May. 30, 2017
Manchester United Return to the Champions League After Winning the Europa League Title
The fall from grace is officially over! Manchester United will return to the Champions League after missing out on the competition this past season.
After finishing in sixth place in the EPL, United needed to win the Europa League in order to return to Champions League play. And thanks to a starting lineup costing nearly €300 million, the Red Devils will be returning to Europe's greatest competition.
Despite not being a big fan of Man U, I think they totally deserve to compete in the Champions League. Just look at the team history, the world class players on the team, and even the manager (even though I despise him).
Not only did Man U win their first ever Europa League Wednesday night, but they did it just two days after the horrendous terrorist attack at the Manchester Arena after an Ariana Grande concert that left 22 dead and 50 others wounded.
This is huge for not only for the club, but for the city of Manchester. And I agree with Phil Neville, who told ESPNFC following the match that he thought the club should hold a victory parade in the cit in order to rejuvenate the citizens.
"After what happened on Monday, United should parade the trophy around Manchester and finish at the Arena," Neville said. "I think it would be special. You should fill the streets of Manchester -- Deansgate, St Peter's Square, St Ann's Square -- and get the trophy back."
"Football can do brilliant things so don't go off on holiday, get back to Manchester, get the trophy out and share the success with the city."
Chelsea cancelled their Premier League title celebration scheduled for this Sunday after the horrific event Monday night, but former United great, David Beckham, seems to agree with Neville, saying, "Tonight was more important than sport. [It was] a big night for United but an even bigger night for the city and our country."
It was a dominating performance from the Reds (who happened to wear blue) with world-record signee Paul Pogba scoring the game winning goal off a deflection in just the 18th minute and it was controlled possession from their on out for the British side.
Another big summer signing in 2016, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, scored the brace United needed shortly after the halftime break, which proved to be too much for the young Ajax squad to overcome.
Winning this trophy means a lot for Man U. It almost guarentees that Antoine Griezmann will make the switch from Atletico Madrid to United, and it is also enough to likely keep Swedish beast Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who said that he would probably leave the club if they didn't make the Champions League.
It's clear based on the pictures after the match just how much this meant to everyone who's a part of this team. Just look at Pogba and Mou on the plane back after the match. Laughter and smiles all around.