Manchester United’s Champions League hopes have received a huge blow with the 10-man Red Devils going down 4-3 to Copenhagen in Denmark.
Erik ten Hag’s side twice blew a lead on Wednesday following Marcus Rashford’s red card before super sub Roony Bardghji sealed a bonkers 4-3 win for the hosts.
A fortnight on from injecting hope into a faltering continent campaign by narrowly beating the Danish champions, Parken witnessed a scarcely believable comeback that leaves United bottom of Group A.
Rasmus Hojlund’s brace had put United in control against his former club, but Rashford’s red card sparked an incredible turnaround as Copenhagen’s pre-match tifo reading “your theatre of nightmares” proved prescient.
This first half was as dramatic as it was action-packed. Hojlund’s third-minute opener at the end of a fine team move was followed by several breaks in play, before the Copenhagen native scored his second and was denied a hat-trick.
Things soon spectacularly unravelled for United. Rashford was sent off for catching Elias Jelert after a VAR review, with Mohamed Elyounoussi scoring before Diogo Goncalves levelled from the spot after a Harry Maguire handball.
A wild first half was followed by a pulsating second period. Skipper Bruno Fernandes’ penalty put United back ahead, only for Lukas Lerager to level again and substitute Bardghji to seal an incredible Copenhagen victory.
In London, Bukayo Saka set up the first goal before scoring himself to lead Arsenal to a 2-0 win over Sevilla that strengthened the English team’s position atop Group B.
The England forward laid the ball off for Leandro Trossard to sweep home a low finish in the 29th minute at Emirates Stadium.
Saka then doubled the lead in the 64th by running onto Gabriel Martinelli’s pass, cutting inside and slotting home past goalkeeper Marko Dmitrović.
Saka hobbled off the field before the final whistle after being on the end of some rough tackles by Sevilla throughout the match. He’d done enough damage by then.
Arsenal moved onto nine points in Group B, four more than both PSV Eindhoven and Lens. Sevilla are languishing in last place on two points.
Record winners Real Madrid overcame an early scare and the absence of Jude Bellingham to advance to the last 16, and so did Bayern Munich thanks to Harry Kane’s brace, Inter Milan and Real Sociedad.
Real beat Braga 3-0 to progress from Group C, with Brahim Diaz, in for Bellingham who was nursing a shoulder problem, Vinicius Junior and Rodrygo on target after goalkeeper Andriy Lunin saved a sixth-minute penalty from Alvaro Djalo.
Bayern won their 17th group game in a row, 2-1 against Galatasaray from Kane’s double in the final 10 minutes.
Earlier, Real Sociedad scored three goals in the first 21 minutes in a convincing 3-1 win over Benfica in San Sebastian while Union Berlin battled to a 1-1 draw at Napoli.
Mikel Merino opened the scoring in the sixth minute, Mikel Oyarzabal netted in the 11th and Ander Barrenetxea got the third in the 21st for Sociedad.
Two-time European champions Benfica pulled one back through Rafa Silva in the 49th, but were eliminated from the competition.
Sociedad secured a spot in the knockout stage when Inter won 1-0 at Salzburg in the other Group D match. The Spanish club last advanced to the last 16 in 2003-04.
In Italy, Berlin’s David Fofana was on target in the 52nd minute to cancel out the Serie A champions’ first-half lead from Matteo Politano.