Manchester United: Europa League Tie With Real Sociedad Moved to Turin

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Manchester United will now face their Europa League round of 32 opponents Real Sociedad in Turin due to Covid-19 restrictions, it has been confirmed.

Manchester United Face Trip to Turin

Government Restrictions Forced the Move

United were due to travel to the Reale Arena in San Sebastian, Spain, on Thursday 18th February. This has now been changed due to Spanish government restrictions on travellers entering the country as a result of the new COVID-19 variant.

Instead, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side will head to the Allianz Stadium in Turin, home of the Serie A champions¬†Juventus. The game will still kick off at 17:55 GMT. United aren’t the first team to see their upcoming European match altered. Liverpool were denied entry to Germany to face RB Leipzig in the Champions League, so they will travel to Budapest instead.

The second leg at Old Trafford is unaffected and expected to go ahead as planned. United played at the Allianz Stadium under Jose Mourinho in the Champions League in November 2018. They were under immense pressure for much of the group game but scored two late goals to take a precious three points after Cristiano Ronaldo had put Juve 1-0 up.

What Does This Mean for United?

This can easily be viewed as a good thing for the Red Devils. Whilst the idea of an away leg is skewed during COVID times, Real Sociedad will be playing away from their own stadium twice. Not only that, they’re playing in a stadium that the majority of the United team have played in very recently.

United will have the opportunity to register some precious away goals in a game that’s being held in a neutral venue. That’s not an opportunity Solskjaer can afford to pass up. It could mean that United will attack and apply pressure a bit more freely than they otherwise would have at the Reale Arena in Northern Spain.

Manchester United said in a statement: “UEFA have thanked Real Sociedad and Manchester United for their close cooperation and assistance in finding a solution to the issue at hand, as well as the Italian Football Federation and Juventus for their support.”

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