Full Time: Juventus 1-2 Manchester United
Manchester United showed shades of 1999 with a brilliant late comeback in Turin against Juventus to put their Champions League hopes right back on track.
A brilliant Juan Mata free-kick and a Leonardo Bonucci own goal earned a crucial 2-1 win, after Cristiano Ronaldo’s sensational first European goal for Juventus had looked like seriously denting their qualification chances.
Valencia’s 3-1 win over Young Boys had left United needing at least a point to stay in the top two in Group H.
Jesse Lingard made his first start since returning from injury, while Ander Herrera was included from the outset after his excellent cameo in the comeback win at Bournemouth, but Marcus Rashford was left on the bench despite his last minute winner in that game.
Ronaldo was unsurprisingly included against his former club, while Sami Khedira was preferred to Blaise Matuidi in midfield.
United were immediately more competitive than they had been in the feeble 1-0 defeat at Old Trafford a fortnight ago, but it was still David De Gea who had to make the game’s first meaningful save, getting down sharply to keep out a Juan Cuadrado cross that deflected off Nemanja Matic.
Khedira then wasted the best chance of the first half, sending Ronaldo’s cut back wide off the outside of the post.
The woodwork again denied Juventus, immediately after the break, when Paulo Dybala curled a terrific effort off the bar with De Gea well beaten.
But when the goal did come, it was worth waiting for. Leonardo Bonucci clipped a ball over the top from his usual quarterback position and Ronaldo waited for it to drop over his shoulder before firing a glorious volley past De Gea at the near post.
Juan Cuadrado and Miralem Pjanic both missed glorious chances to kill the game off, before Andrea Barzagli was introduced as the home side looked to seal the deal.
In fact, the switch to a back three had the opposite effect, drawing United on, and when Paul Pogba was fouled on the edge of the box five minutes from time, Mata stepped up to curl a beauty over the wall and in.