Manchester United staged a late comeback to seal a 2-1 victory over Italian giants Juventus in the Champions League tonight.
Jose Mourinho’s side looked well organised and resolute from the start in Turin, although Juve always looked like the team more likely to score and when they did break the deadlock it was through a very special strike by a very special player.
In the 65th minute Juve centre-back Leonardo Bonucci floated a sublime long ball over the top of the United defence for Cristiano Ronaldo to rifle an unstoppable volley past a stunned David De Gea.
It looked as if the home side would push on seal the win and with it qualification for the knockout stages, but Manchester United hung in the game and drew level in the 86th minute when substitute Juan Mata floated a beautiful free-kick into the top corner.
The Red Devils were not done, however, sending their travelling support into ecstasy and securing a famous victory when Ashley Young’s free-kick was diverted into his own goal by Juve left-back Alex Sandro in the last minute.
Speaking after the game United manager revealed he was proud of his team’s performance.
“The game was a very good game. It was top. We performed at a high level. We had about five minutes after that goal to wake up again but the team was there until the last,” Mourinho told BT Sport.
Mourinho, who speaks fluent Italian, was abused by the home crowd for the entire 90 minutes and responded after the final whistle by cupping his hand to his ear – something the Juve fans and several players took offence to.
However, the Portuguese coach was quick to downplay the incident after the game.
“On a beautiful Italian day, I made a little thing. I know millions are happy with the win. But I respect Juventus and the quality they have. I am really proud of my boys because they did everything.
“A couple of our boys said in the interview at home that they were a little bit [makes gesture]… We had to come and not feel inferior. We were in a situation where we thought we needed to go to the last second of the match. The boys started really well and things were under control.”
United will all but qualify for the knockout stages with a win against Group H minnows Young Boys at Old Trafford on the November 27, with their rivals for second place Valencia having to face Juventus in Turin.