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UEFA Champions League
September 19, 2012
• Old Trafford, Manchester
Referee: W. Stark
• Attendance: 74653
M. Carrick 7'
United hang on to claim all three points after an early Carrick goal following a frantic start to the match. Galatasaray had a host of chances to make Nani rue his missed penalty, but the Turkish side were wasteful and leave Old Trafford with less than they deserved.
FULL TIME: Manchester United 1-0 Galatasaray
90' + 5'
Vidic earns a goal-kick with some fantastic defending to shepard the ball out under immense pressure.
90' + 3'
Chance for Hernandez! Valencia's cross is floated to the back post for Chicharito to volley home but his acrobatic effort flies over the bar! What a finish at Old Trafford!
90' + 2'
PENALTY SHOUT! Now this is a BIG decision. Evans brings down Yilmaz inside the box and that could have easily gone Galatasaray's way. God almighty what a let off.
90' + 1'
Wonderful play from United. Nani cuts in from the left and feeds Hernandez with a super ball but the Mexican can beat Muslera with his finish.
There will be five minutes of time added on.
Eboue takes a whack on the knee in a challenge with Welbeck and he will require more treatment as we enter the final minute of the 90.
Penalty shout! Valencia goes down on the byline under a challenge but the referee waves away the appeals once again.
Nani flicks a cute pass in for Hernandez, but the substitute miscues his shot and sends the ball into the side netting.
Evra head the ball back to De Gea with Elmander bearing down on him, thankfully for United the Spanish stopper gets there first.
Robin van Persie
Javier 'Chicharito' Hernandez
Yellow Card Robin van Persie
Galatasaray are enjoying a decent spell of possession in the final 10 minutes but are failing to find that cutting edge in the final third. The double save from De Gea and the looping header from Yilmaz are the two bright moments they will be hoping to recreate.
Great ovation by the Old Trafford crowd for the return of Darren Fletcher, great moment for the Scottish international after a horribly long 10 month lay-off with that bowel condition.
Valencia's crossing has been below standard tonight, he gets into another great position but his delivery lets him down.
Van Persie plays a sublime flick into Kagawa but the the United man's shot is blocked from inside the area.
Kagawa wins the ball in midfield and finds Nani flying forward, the winger squares the ball across the box to the unmarked Van Persie but the Dutchman's first touch is poor and the chance is wasted.
DOUBLE SAVE FROM DE GEA! Yilmaz on the break, one-on-one fires first at the Spaniard who saves wonderfully, the substitute Emre Colak then follows up with another quality shot which is superbly saved again!
CLOSE! Nani finds Evra's burst into the box with a neat pass and the left back drags a shot which goes wide off the keeper.
Inan gives the ball away to Van Persie with Galatasaray caught forward but Kaya makes a last ditch challenge to save his team-mate.
Eboue goes down under a challenge from Nani and requires treatment.
The impetus is slowly draining out of United's play with the Turkish supporters making an absolute racket at Old Trafford.
Eboue goes down and wins a free-kick for the visitors on the right flank. Altintop's swerving delivery is well caught by De Gea.
Yellow Card Nemanja Vidic
Close! Nani's corner is met by Vidic's head and it goes just over the bar, with it coming off the keeper last, but a goal kick is given.
Yellow Card Felipe Melo
OFF THE POST! Altintop swings in a cross which is met by a super header from Inan which loops across the face of the goal and scrapes the far post. How close can you get? United living dangerously.
That penalty miss has sparked some life into the Turkish side.
Now there isn't a ball to be found! Scenes at Old Trafford! Hilarious stuff.
Penalty save Néstor Muslera Micol
Missed Penalty Nani
Nani really overcomplicated his run-up then, how frustrating for Sir Alex's side.
Nani goes left after a stuttering run up and Muslera goes the right way and makes a great save!
Rafael skips past a few players before being brought down by Yilmaz in the box. Penalty.
PENALTY TO MANCHESTER UNITED!
Nani expects a free-kick and picks up the ball! Referee just gives Galatasaray the free-kick, curious incident.
Altintop goes for goal from long range with a low daisy cutter which goes a yard or so wide of the De Gea's right hand post.
Nani and Kagawa link up superbly with the Japanese midfielder eventually taking the show which is blocked for a corner. Nani swings in the delivery but van Persie is penalised for a foul.
Galatasaray take the kick-off and the second half is underway!
Joe Wright reports: "Half-time at Old Trafford and Manchester United hold a slender lead courtesy of Michael Carrick's well-taken early goal in an intriguing clash here. After surviving an opening-minute penalty scare, the hosts began to dictate the flow of proceedings and found themselves deservedly in front after less than quarter of an hour, but Galatasaray grew into the game as the half wore on and looked by far the more threatening side at the end of the 45. Sir Alex Ferguson will be pleased with the scoreline, but he'll be hoping for more from his side in the second period."
45' + 3'
HALF TIME: Manchester United 1-0 Galatasaray
45' + 2'
Kagawa tries a cheeky chip from inside the area but lofts the ball into Muslera's hands.
Two minutes to be added on.
What a chance! Scholes is dispossessed and Altintop is baring down on goal, under pressure from Carrick the midfielder plays the shot off his own foot and it skews horribly wide. Carrick was living dangerously there though, ref could have easily pointed to the spot for his slide across the Turk.
Miscommunication between Evans and De Gea hands the visitors a corner. Taken short it is swung in by Yilmaz and then Amrabat then has a tame strike on goal.
CLOSE! The free-kick is played to Altintop on the edge of the area and his curling effort rockets off the foot of the post!
Yellow Card Patrice Evra
Evra's sloppy touch lets Amrabat in, the Frenchman then catches the Moroccan late with a sliding challenge to concede a free-kick in a dangerous area.
Another corner for Galatasaray who are starting to pile on the pressure. Inan's delivery is headed clear by Vidic.
Burak Yilmaz buys a free-kick off Valencia about 30 yards from goal. Altintop fires it straight at the wall.
Galatasaray have been lively going forward but are yet to truly test David De Gea in goal.
Big shout for a penalty! Nani slips in Kagawa who beats two players before being brought down before he could shoot. Referee says no penalty and gets it spot on! The challenge from Kaya is superb.
Sloppy pass from Valencia hands the ball to Galatasaray, they break forward in numbers with Altintop eventually feeding Eboue for a shot from a wide area, blocked for a corner.
Van Persie takes the corner but Nani's header is wide off the mark.
Rafael heads away Eboue's cross and United go on the attack. After a minute or two of probing, Scholes finds Valencia in space yet again on the right but his cross is headed out for a corner.
The ball comes of Eboue's hand after Muslera's save from Valencia moments ago. It would have been a harsh penalty to give, mind.
Van Persie lays the ball off to Valencia, who hits a vicious cross across goal which forces the keeper into a fine save. The Ecuador international is in again moments later but wastes the chance with an inaccurate cross.
GROUP H UPDATE: Braga 0-1 CFR Cluj (Bastos)
The Turkish champions are working their way back into the match, the ball comes to Elmander after a nice spell of possession and he earns a cross off Evans. Felipe Melo meets the corner with his head but lifts it well over the bar.
A shot from range from Paul Scholes hits Kagawa in front of goal, but the Japanese attacker can't quite bring the ball under his spell in the box.
But unfortunately he is, and will be replaced by former Bolton striker Johan Elmander.
Bulut looks to be hobbling. Galatasaray fans will be praying that their club's top goalscorer isn't force off through injury so early in the game.
What a start to the game, it's finally settled now though. Galatasaray look very dangerous on the counter-attack, and Manchester United are only a couple of notches away from clicking into full gear.
Off the bar! Amarabat curls a sweetly struck effort from just inside the area on to the bar. with De Gea well beaten. Warning sign for the hosts.
Assist Shinji Kagawa
Goal Michael Carrick
What a start to the match and it's capped off by the hosts taking an early lead! Carrick recieved the ball from Van Persie before exchanging passes with Kagawa. The midfielder was then clipped by the keeper as he went round him, and eventually flicked the ball in whilst laying on the deck.
GOAL!!! Manchester United 1-0 Galatasaray (Carrick)
Great save from Muslera! Nani is in with only the keeper to beat, he tries to lift over him but the keeper saves!
Galatasaray break in numbers and have a four on three situation but Yilmaz strays offside.
Nani wriggles through the midfield and finds Valencia out wide, a cross shot from the winger is blocked.
It was a clumsy challenge by Vidic on Yilmaz, and it was also a penalty. Early let off for the hosts, tough break for the Turkish side. The Serb trod on the Turk's heels without getting anywhere near the ball.
Anxious moment for Manchester United early on, Galatasaray have a shout for a penalty but the referee is having none of it.
Manchester United take the kick-off and we are underway!
So the Galatasaray away support sang over the anthem and virtually drowned it out. They are one rowdy set of supporters!
More from Mr. Wright at Old Trafford: United fans have just been treated to an audio montage of the club's greatest nights in European football history, whilst flag-bearers wave huge banners at all four corners of the pitch to commemorate the years in which the Red Devils lifted Europe's top prize. If you needed any further reminders that the hosts are back in this tournament with a point to prove, you've just had it.
The players are emerging from the tunnel, the crowd is full to capacity and we are moments away from the Champions League anthem.
The United manager admitted that he made the mistake of playing too many young players in these matches last season, in his pre-match comments. He certainly won't be repeating that mistake.
That man will take nothing for granted after last year's disastrous showing in this competition, the Red Devils only managed to win one out of their three home games on the way to crashing out on the final day in Basel.
Tonight also marks a record breaking 18th consecutive Champions League campaign for Manchester United, and of course Sir Alex Ferguson.
Goal.com's Joe Wright reports from Old Trafford: "There are one or two familiar faces for United in the Galatasaray ranks this evening. Van Persie will find himself up against another former Arsenal man in Emmanuel Eboue, who starts at right back for the Turkish giants and will perhaps know better than most how to halt the efforts of the Dutchman. Meanwhile, there are two other former Premier League players who will begin tonight amongst the substitutes: Johan Elmander, once of Bolton, and ex-Liverpool winger Albert Riera."
The other match in Group H tonight takes place in Portugal between Braga and Cluj, I'll be sure to keep you Manchester United fans updated on that one.
Galatasaray: Muslera; Dany, Hakan Balta, Semih Kaya, Eboue, Hamit Altıntop, Selçuk İnan, Felipe Melo, Amrabat, Burak, Umut Bulut. Subs: Ceylan, Cris, A Yılmaz, Riera, Engin Baytar, Emre Çolak, Elmander.
Manchester United: De Gea; Rafael, Evans, Vidic, Evra; Valencia, Carrick, Scholes, Nani; Kagawa, Van Persie. Subs: Lindegaard, Ferdinand, Anderson, Chicharito, Welbeck, Cleverley, Fletcher.
Team news coming up shortly...
Have to hand it to the traveling Turkish fans. The Galatasaray faithful have been at Old Trafford since about 18.30 and haven't stopped singing since!
Tonight could be the 100th win for Sir Alex Ferguson and Manchester United in the Champions League. Only Real Madrid can boast a better record, they are already at 100 wins courtesy of their 3-2 win over Manchester City last night.
It's back! The greatest club competition in the world returns and on the agenda tonight is a Group H clash between Manchester United and Galatasaray at Old Trafford. Stay with Goal.com's play-by-play commentary for all the thrills and spills live!
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