Eighteen-year-old Mason Greenwood on Thursday scored as Manchester United cruised into the UEFA Europa League last 32 with a 3-0 win over Partizan Belgrade at Old Trafford, while Celtic stunned SS Lazio with a last-gasp goal in Rome to progress.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s United knew that a third victory in four Group L games would be enough to send them through.
Greenwood broke the deadlock in the 22nd minute with a cool finish to score his third goal of the season and second in the competition.
Anthony Martial doubled the advantage after the half-hour mark with a brilliant individual goal, before Marcus Rashford lashed home the third four minutes after the interval.
The comfortable victory saw United bounce back after a 1-0 loss at AFC Bournemouth last weekend had ended a three-game winning run.
Dutch side AZ thrashed Astana 5-0 in Kazakhstan to keep control of the race for second place in Group L behind United, ousting their hosts and moving four points clear of Partizan Belgrade.
Olivier Ntcham scored a dramatic stoppage-time winner to grab Celtic a 2-1 victory at Lazio.
Neil Lennon’s outfit remain top of Group E with two games remaining, seven points clear of third-placed Lazio after their second straight win over the Romans.
Ciro Immobile volleyed the hosts into a seventh-minute lead, but James Forrest drew Celtic level before halftime.
Substitute Ntcham latched onto Odsonne Edouard’s pass in the fifth minute of stoppage-time and dinked a cool finish over Lazio goalkeeper Thomas Strakosha.
“We have very little chance of qualifying, but never say never,” Lazio coach Simone Inzaghi said.
The other game in the group saw CFR Cluj move to within a point of qualification by beating Stade Rennais 1-0 in Romania.
Celtic’s Old Firm rivals Rangers gave their hopes of reaching the knockout stage for the first time since 2011 a massive boost with a 2-0 victory over Porto at Ibrox.
Second-half goals from Alfredo Morelos and Steven Davis fired Steven Gerrard’s men second in Group G, three points ahead of Feyenoord after the Dutch side’s 1-1 draw with BBS Young Boys.
Borussia Moenchengladbach got their first win of the Europa League campaign as Marcus Thuram’s 95th-minute strike sealed a 2-1 triumph against AS Roma.
The German club moved second in Group J, ahead of Roma on head-to-head and two points behind leaders Istanbul Basaksehir, who saw off Wolfsberger AC 3-0 in Austria.
Raul Jimenez’s 92nd-minute goal grabbed a 1-0 success for Wolverhampton Wanderers over Slovan Bratislava at Molineux.
Nuno Espirito Santo’s men now sit five points clear of Slovan in second in Group K, with SC Braga a point ahead of the Premier League side at the top after beating Besiktas JK 3-1.
Sevilla thrashed F91 Dudelange 5-2 to also reach the knockout rounds.
Dudelange are still in contention to progress despite sitting at the bottom of the group, one point behind APOEL and Qarabag after the Cypriot side’s 2-1 win in Nicosia.
PSV Eindhoven suffered a humbling 4-1 defeat by LASK to slip to third in Group D behind their opponents and Portugal’s Sporting, who won 2-0 at Rosenborg.
RCD Espanyol moved to the brink of qualification by hammering nine-man Ludogorets Razgrad 6-0, while KAA Gent moved top of Group I with a 3-1 win at VfL Wolfsburg.
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