Paul Pogba injured in Manchester United's Europa League victory

Paul Pogba injured in Manchester United's Europa League victory

Juan Mata grabbed the only goal as Manchester United beat Rostov 1-0 on the night and 2-1 on aggregate in the Europa League last 16.

Rostov appeared to be growing in confidence, so it was just as well that United finally broke the deadlock inside the final 20 minutes.

Rostov barely threatened in the opening exchanges but they almost took the lead in the second half when Sardar Azmoun forced a save from United stopper Sergio Romero.

Ibrahimović nearly finally found the breakthrough a few minutes later, though his effort from a tight angle curled against Rostov's far post.

The visitors found themselves under some continuous early pressure but weathered the storm as Henrikh Mkhitaryan fired wide on 12 minutes, while some good early deliveries from Antonio Valencia from the right flank were hacked clear.

Rostov know that due to the current aggregate score they will need to score in Manchester and there is a clear sense that their best chance of eliminating United would have been with a triumph in Russian Federation, where Ajax and Bayern Munich had already been beaten this season.

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United needed only a 0-0 draw or a win to progress and completely dominated the first half, with the first chances coming inside four minutes.

The Armenian's low cross was back-heeled towards goal by Ibrahimovic and Mata charged in at the back post to slam home from close range. The Swede then smashed his next effort against the right-hand upright after cutting inside from the left.

United lost midfielder Paul Pogba with an apparent hamstring injury, while Mourinho was intent on directing a cluster of thinly-veiled digs at top-flight rivals free from fixture congestion.

There was no sign of Rooney at Wednesday's training session after he sustained a knock in a training-ground collision with Phil Jones, and Mourinho confirmed that he is still receiving treatment.

Romero made a smart stop to deny Bukharov with a stooping header before Marko Devic replaced Andrei Prepelita with just over 10 minutes of the match remaining.

Pogba departed in the 47th minute, Marouane Fellaini taking his place, and Rostov briefly threatened to take the upper hand, Sergio Romero saving from Sardar Azmoun and Christian Noboa.

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