Ole Gunnar Solskjaer ends European quarter-final curse as Man Utd beat Granada

Manchester United ran out 2-0 winners in the first leg of their Europa League quarter-final against Granada – and ended a European curse in the process.

The Red Devils have put themselves in a strong position to reach the semi-finals of the competition for a second straight season, with goals from Marcus Rashford and Bruno Fernandes handing them a win and two crucial away goals.

Rashford produced a neat finish from close range to open the scoring after 31 minutes, before Fernandes sealed the victory from the penalty spot late on when Yan Eteki was deemed to have brought him down inside the box.

Heading into the game, United had failed to win the first leg of each of their last three two-legged quarter-final ties in Europe.

That unwanted record is now gone, nevertheless, and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be desperate to see his side advance to the last four and end another curse at that stage of the tournament.

The Red Devils were beaten in three semi-finals last season, suffering defeat against Sevilla in the Europa League while crashing out of the FA Cup and Carabao Cup against Chelsea and Man City respectively.

They were dumped out of this season's Carabao Cup by City again at the last-four stage, while an FA Cup semi against Southampton is to come next weekend.

United are now in a strong position to make it three semi-finals from three once again this term, and Solskjaer was full of praise for his side after the win.

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  • He told BT Sport: "It was not a perfect night. We got three yellow cards and three suspensions. 2-0 is very good result. We know how difficult it is to come to Spain. We've got to play well to get a result."

    He then added: "We want to win every game. It’s still a young team, a learning team.

    "We have to improve all the time. Football catches you so quickly if you rest. We can’t have any other approach."

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