Last Updated at 2:18 pm, February 18th 2012
FULL TIME: Manchester United secure a comfortable win against Ajax at the Amsterdam ArenA after a classy second half showing. Ashley Young broke the deadlock just before the hour mark stepping inside Vurnon Anita before firing his low shot through the legs of Kenneth Vermeer. And the visitors made sure of victory with five minutes remaning as Javier Hernandez combined with Wayne Rooney before finishing off the move from close-range despite Vermeer's best efforts.
YELLOW CARD: Christian Eriksen is booked for a late challenge on Fabio da Silva.
SUBSTITUTION: Substitute Antonio Valencia is substituted after falling awkwardly following his through ball and is replaced by Danny Welbeck.
GOAL: Ajax 0 Manchester United 2 (Javier Hernandez 85).
SUBSTITUTION: Ajax make their final change as Jody Lukoki replaces Aras Ozbiliz.
SUBSTITUTION: United change as goalscorer Ashley Young comes off the field for the in-form Antonio Valencia.
Andrew Tweets: "I predict United will bag another with Ashley Young adding a second. Great commentary tonight!"
SUBSTITUTION: Nicolai Boilesen replaces full-back Dico Koppers for Ajax as they make their second change of the night.
SUBSTITUTIONS: Paul Scholes replaces Tom Cleverley for United while Ricardo Van Rhijn comes on for Dmitri Bulykin for Ajax.
GOAL: Ajax 0 Manchester United 1 (Ashley Young 59).
Charlie emails me to say: "Seems Nani has started where he left off losing the ball in the final attacks. Mr Ferguson bring on Valencia!!"
Jude Tweets: "Think united will just scrape this. Hope to see Pogba on and see what he can do." Yep, he's on the bench, but as things stand Jude, I doubt he'll be coming on.
YELLOW CARD: And Siem de Jong is himself booked for a late challenge on Ashley Young following a poor throw out by Kenneth Vermeer.
YELLOW CARD: Fabio da Silva is booked for a late tackle on Siem de Jong in the middle of the park.
Jordan writes: "Second half United will pile the pressure on and a nice 3-1 win. Two from Rooney and one from Hernandez - a header I think."
Ajax are now 7/2 to claim victory with SKY BET, who make Manchester United 5/4 and the draw 5/4. My pre-match prediction of 0-2, which was 8/1, is now down to 7/1. Head now to www.skybet.com to place your bets.
HALF TIME: No goals at the break in what has been a rather disappointing first-leg tie at the Amsterdam ArenA. Miralem Sulejmani has looked lively for the hosts while Siem de Jong's shot was parried around the post in probably the best chance of the half. United have rarely threatened although Javier Hernandez is looking sharpe.
Ishaq thinks United will win despite their poor start tonight: "I think Man Utd will win 2-0 with Rooney and Nani to score."
Matt must be a Man City fan: "5-0 Ajax with De Gea blundering horribly, yet again, on many occasions." Oh well!
Charlie's being a little negative with his comments: "To be honest with you I have only one eye on the game tonight it is such a comedown from the Champions League that my interest is minimal. In some ways I hope that United don't stay in the Europa League longer than they have to so they can win the Premier League."
Ryan emails me to say: "I'll be disappointed if united don't get a 3 or 4 nil convincing win tonight looking at the team they have out. Good to see Cleverley back in the lineup and looking forward to seeing Valencia coming off the bench late on to run riot."
Horace is expecting a thumping win for Ajax: "I think Ajax will wipe the floor with Manyou tonight. 5-1 to the Dutchmen."
Charlie reckons United will lose tonight: "I think Man Utd will struggle tonight in Ajax, their midfield looks weak and I also think because it is in Holland that Ajax will have the edge, so I'm going for Ajax to win 3-2. I do expect it to be close, but I'm sure Ajax will get the result. Miralem Sulejmani to open the scoring." Yes, the Serb is a talented player Charlie and I expect him to give that United backline a few problems this evening.
Nigel from Ireland emails me to say: "Looks a good team put out by Fergie. Delighted to see Cleverly back. 2-0 utd I think. I hope Eriksson has a good game for Ajax and Fergie buys him as he the type of player United need." Well, the Dane is a very special talent Nigel. We'll see how well he does tonight.
Meanwhile, Tom Tweets: "Rooney in good form and is scoring in vital games at the moment, everyone else chipping in a well which should see them through!"
Michael Tweets: "United team looks strong on paper, Evans and De gea could cost us the match if not on form! And how fit are Nani, Clevs and Jones?" Interesting thought Michael.
Let's have a quick look at the betting. Ajax are 10/3 to claim victory with SKY BET, who make Manchester United 5/6 and the draw 5/2. Ajax's Miralem Sulejmani is favourite to bag the first goal for the hosts at 8/1 while Dmitri Bulykin and Siem De Jong are both 9/1. Theo Janssen is a good outside bet at 12/1 while Christian Eriksen is priced at 16/1. Meanwhile, United's talisman Wayne Rooney is 7/2 and Javier Hernandez is 9/2 for the visitors. Ashley Young is 16/1 to bag a brace. Michael Carrick is a 20/1 shot to score first. I'm going for a pre-match prediction of 0-2, which is 8/1. Head now to www.skybet.com to place your bets.
Thu 16th Feb - Round of 32
Lokomotiv2 - 1Ath Bilbao
Ajax0 - 2Man Utd
Salzburg0 - 4Metalist
AZ Alkmaar1 - 0Anderlecht
Lazio1 - 3A Madrid
Plzen1 - 1Schalke
Leg Warsaw2 - 2Sporting
FC Porto1 - 2Man City
Stoke0 - 1Valencia
S Bucuresti0 - 1Twente
Wisla Krakow1 - 1S Liege
Udinese0 - 0PAOK S'nika
Trabzonspor1 - 2PSV
Hannover2 - 1Club Brugge
Europa League Group A
Europa League Group B
Europa League Group C
|1||Red Bull Salzburg||6||18|
Europa League Group D
Europa League Group E
Europa League Group F
|2||Maccabi Tel Aviv||6||11|
Europa League Group G
Europa League Group H
Europa League Group I
|3||Vitoria de Guimaraes||6||5|
Europa League Group J
Europa League Group K
|3||Sheriff Tiraspol (Mol)||6||6|
Europa League Group L
|3||Maccabi Haifa (Isr)||6||5|