UEL: Chukwueze Shines As Villarreal Edge Arsenal, Man Utd Thrash Roma

Chukwueze during the football match between Villarreal CF and CD Leganes on April 21, 2019 at Ceramica Stadium in Villarreal, Spain. Cordon Press

Samuel Chukwueze was on for all ninety minutes as Villarreal edged Arsenal 2-1 in their Europa League semifinal first leg at the Estadio de la Ceramica on Thursday.

Manuel Trigueros and Raul Albiol put Villarreal whose manager Unai Emery was facing his former side 2-0 up inside 30 minutes.

The home side were then handed a numerical advantage when Dani Ceballos was sent off for a second yellow in the 57th-minute but they failed to capitalise as the away side secured a vital away goal with Pepe dispatching a spot kick after Bukayo Saka was fouled in the box.

Villarreal were then reduced to ten men after Etienne Capoue received a second booking with ten minutes left but neither side could muster any more goals leaving the tie finely poised for next week’s return at the Emirates.

Meanwhile, Manchester United are all but through to the Europa League final after they scored five second half goals to thrash AS Roma 6-2 with Edinson Cavani playing a starring role in their semifinal first leg at Old Trafford on Thursday.

The Red Devils got off to a dream start when Bruno Fernandes put them ahead in the ninth-minute with a dunked finish after beautiful link up play involving Paul Pogba and Cavani.

The lead lasted only five minutes however as Paul Pogba was punished for a handball in the box with the resultant penalty converted by Lorenzo Pellegrini. The Italians then went ahead in the 34th-minute after former Manchester City man Edin Dzeko tapped home Pellegrini’s cutback.

Cavani drew Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s level two minutes after the break and it was one way traffic from there on.

The Uruguayan made it 3-2 in the 64th-minute before a Fernandes penalty from former United stalwart Chris Smallings’ foul on Cavani and goals from Pogba and substitute Mason Greenwood put the tie out of the reach of Roma and rendered next week’s second leg little more than a finality.