10 heroes who pulled Manchester United and Ajax to the UEFA Europa League final

“Football-today.com”: MU and Ajax will compete in the decisive battle of the UEFA Europa League final! There are five players who helped their teams qualify for the final.

Europa League MU
Manchester United_2017-03-09

Manchester United

Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Sweden)

It is sad that Zlatan will no longer play for Manchester United in Europa League. The Swedish striker damaged both the interior and exterior cruciate ligaments and had surgery. Ibrahimovic made a serious contribution in Europa League. There are 8 points (5 goals + 3 “assists”) on Zlatan’s account and that is the best indicator in the team. Without Ibra’s goals, there would be no victories in the stubborn duels against Zorya Lugansk in the group stage. He participated in both goals in the gate of Rostov and scored a hat-trick in the game with St. Etienne. Overall, Zlatan scored, Zlatan assisted, Zlatan charged Manchester United with his confidence.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan (Armenia)

The first season in Manchester United turned out to be uneven for the Armenian midfielder. However, it was Europa League where Henry shined and was very useful. Mkhitaryan scored five goals, four of which —in the playoffs. He scored a winning goal in home game against FC. St. Etienne, an important goal against FC Rostov. His input was huge in overcoming the barrier called Anderlecht in the quarter-finals. There Henry played a decisive role upsetting the Belgians in each of the matches.

Paul Pogba (France)

 Europa League Paul Pogba
Paul Pogba

Not everything is going smoothly for the planet’s most expensive player on “Old Trafford”. Nevertheless, Paul worked hard in the Europa League matches. He is the leader of the MU in terms of the number of minutes spent in this tournament.  Pogba is excellent in the elements of field suppression – tackles, interceptions, winning single duels. A Frenchman can play even better, but sometimes he becomes a hostage of Mourinho’s style.

Markus Rashford (England)

The young Englishman got into the heroes list at the decisive stages. He did not flinch when he became the main central striker after Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s injury. His contribution cannot be ignored, even if his heroic deeds are not voluminous, but point-like. MU won the quarterfinal and semifinal duels against Anderlecht and Celta due to Rashford’s direct participation. In a home match against the Belgians, Rashford assisted Mkhitaryan.  Then he scored the decisive goal in overtime. Later Marcus scored the penalty kick in the second match against Celta. And in the home game he performed a cool assist to the curly head of Fellaini.

Ander Herrera (Spain)

In “Football-today.com” opinion:  the most useful player of Manchester United in this season. Known for his creativity for Athletic Bilbao, the midfielder adapted to Mourinho’s requirements faster than other partners. As a result, he turned out to be a very “prickly” midfielder. Ander has the best statistics in tackling the ball in Europa League among the MU players. The Basque does not forget about his technique, often uses dribbling. Herrera is also a leader in this component.



Amin Younes (Germany)

Ajax leader in the number of minutes spent on the field. He lags behind the absolute leader in this indicator — goalkeeper André Onana with only couple of minutes. Former pupil of Borussia Monchengladbach is the key player of Amsterdam this season. His actions in Europa League were completely decisive. Let’s mention his two outmost accomplishments: a goal against Schalke at 120 minute mark, which brought Ajax to the semifinals. And effective assist to Dolberg against Lyon which led directly to goal. There would not have been a long-awaited entry into the final without it.

Kasper Dolberg (Denmark)

19-year-old striker from Denmark scored 6 goals in the Europa League. He is the best scorer of Ajax in the tournament. Dolberg scored in the gates of Celta and Standard at group round. And in the playoffs he disappointed Copenhagen and Lyon twice. The main sniper of Ajax deserves full praise because the statistics favor him.Football-today.com” hopes that Casper will distinguish himself in the final too. He is especially effective this spring: four goals in the last five matches of the Europa League!

Bertrand Traore (Burkina Faso)

Bernard Traore
Bernard Traore

The 21-year-old player arrived in Ajax on loan terms from Chelsea. He got accustomed to team style and gained valuable practice in the Europa League. Bertrand is definitely the leader of the Amsterdam club in the “goal plus-minus” system. There are eight scoring performances on the account of Traore. His most decisive play was, of course, a home match against Lyon, in which Ajax won 4-1. Traore took part in three goals that time.

Hakim Ziyech (Morocco)

Ziyech came from Twente before the start of the current campaign. He came to take the place of Quincy Promes who left for Spartak and made a big success in all his glory. Hakim does not spoil the overall picture in Ajax. That is to put it mildly. The light and fast midfielder sharpens the game. He scores himself and gives out the passes. At the group stage, he scored the ball in each of the two matches against Celta. Celta also reached the late stage of the Europa League. Also he reserved the further “assists” for the decisive fights against Schalke and Lyon. Let us also not forget his composition of three assists that led to the goals.

Kenny Tete (Netherlands)

Perhaps, to some people the choice seems not too obvious, but this young guy deserved recognition. Often it was Tete who backed up the cheerful central defenders. Also, it’s worth mentioning the health of this guy. He is vigorous enough to relentlessly iron the right flank. In the Europa League, he is the top one of the Ajax for successful tackles. Who is Kenny Tete —A nice fellow who played with random success in the fall term. Right now he is at top peak and played extremely well in the playoffs.

Final Thoughts for Europa League final

We hope that final will be marvelous considering above mentioned excellent players. The term’s showpiece that takes place at the Friends Arena in Stockholm, Sweden, on Wednesday 24 May will be most spectacular.


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