Mar 19, 2014 at 7.45pm UK at ​Old Trafford
Man UtdManchester United
van Persie (25' pen., 45', 52')
Carrick (10'), Evra (61'), Ferdinand (90')
FT(HT: 2-0)

Manolas (5'), Dominguez (9'), Salino (62'), Marcano (90')

Live Commentary: Manchester United 3-0 (3-2) Olympiacos - as it happened

Relive Manchester United's memorable 3-0 win over Olympiacos in the Champions League as they overcome a two-goal deficit to reach the quarter-finals.

Manchester United produced a memorable European comeback to progress through to the Champions League quarter-finals at the expense of Olympiacos this evening.

Having lost the first leg 2-0 in Athens last month, the Red Devils needed to win by three clear goals if they were to book their spot in the last eight and avoid a shock exit.

They managed to do that courtesy of a Robin van Persie hat-trick, giving manager David Moyes a much-needed win to erase the memories of Sunday's defeat to Liverpool.

You can read how United pulled off their comeback courtesy of Sports Mole's live play-by-play commentary below.

6.45pmGood evening! Thank you very much for joining Sports Mole for tonight's huge Champions League last 16 second leg between Manchester United and Olympiacos. United come into the match trailing by two goals to nil after an abject performance in the second leg, making tonight's match crucial for them, and perhaps for the future of David Moyes. We'll start with a look at the hosts...

6.47pmThe shadow of Sir Alex continues to loom large over Old Trafford, and Moyes is struggling to emerge from it at the moment. It may be that the daunting task of following in Fergie's footsteps is the only thing keeping Moyes in the right right now. After all, the man himself was reportedly on the verge of being sacked early in his reign before turning the club around and establishing himself as arguably the greatest manager of all time. However, if elimination from the Champions League immediately follows their humiliation at the hands of Liverpool on Sunday - and particularly if they go out with a whimper - then the board's patience could get dangerously thin.

6.49pmWhether or not tonight's game is make or break for Moyes remains to be seen - I suspect not - but it could well be his biggest match yet in charge of the Red Devils. This season will go down as a failure, whatever happens tonight, but slumping out to Olympiacos with another poor performance at home would turn it into an unmitigated disaster of a campaign. If they can pull off what would be a memorable European comeback, then a quarter-final spot in the Champions League is not bad and could give them the momentum to make a strong end to the campaign.

6.51pmIf they are to pull off the comeback, they will need to drastically improve from their recent performances. The 3-0 home defeat to fierce rivals Liverpool at the weekend would have been hard viewing for any United fan, especially as they were lucky not to lose by more. The first leg of this tie also produced an uninspiring performance from United as they failed to threaten Olympiacos in Athens. Everyone will be looking for a response tonight.

6.53pmPerhaps the biggest indication of United's decline this season can be viewed in tonight's match. Should the Red Devils have lost 2-0 away from home with Fergie as boss, there still would not have been much doubt that they could do the business at Old Trafford against Olympiacos. However, they have already lost six times at the Theatre of Dreams this season, and now it is far from a given that they will not add to that tally tonight.

6.55pmThe Champions League is the final frontier for United to fight on this season. They are well on course to record the worst defence of a Premier League title in history, while they were eliminated from the domestic cup competitions by Sunderland and Swansea. With the quality of other teams in this competition, even the most ardent United fan will not be expecting them to go on and win it, but reaching the last eight is a good achievement and would at least give them a chance to dream of further glory.

6.57pmThe first leg defeat to Olympiacos was such a poor result, coupled with such a poor performance, that optimism won't be high for United to progress past this stage. Earlier in the season, this competition supplied United with a welcome distraction from their domestic woes as they cruised through their group unbeaten, conceding the joint-fewest goals in the entire tournament. However, it now threatens to completely derail their campign if they cannot overhaul a challenging deficit.

6.59pmOne positive for the hosts is that they have a 100% record in the Champions League at Old Trafford this season. The 'Theatre of Dreams' may not be the fortress it once was domestically, but so far it has held firm to European challenges. Stretching back even further, they have won 13 of their last 15 Champions League knockout games in front of their own fans, with the only defeat coming to Real Madrid last year when they were reduced to 10 men.

7.01pmHowever, the United that amassed those victories is a very different one to the side that will be playing tonight. Much of the personnel may be the same as old-timers like Ryan Giggs and Rio Ferdinand have been including in the starting lineup, but the attitude of the squad appears to be different. They need to win by three goals tonight to go through without extra time or penalties - a feat that they have managed just once all season, beating Norwich 4-0.

7.03pmThere was certainly a feeling that United had received a kind draw when Olympiacos were pulled out of the bag to face them, but it could end up being a nightmare one for them. The Greeks didn't exactly show any startling form themselves in the first leg, but they worked hard and took advantage of a poor United performance to grab the victory. You can be sure that they were work equally as hard tonight and, with a 2-0 lead to protect, it will be up to United to play through them.

7.05pmOlympiacos come into this match on a high, however. They clinched yet another league title at the weekend, beating Panthrakikos 2-0 to secure the trophy with five games to spare. While United find themselves 18 points behind the leaders in the Premier League, Olympiacos are 18 points clear of Atromitos in the Greek Super League.

7.07pmOf course, the difference in quality between the two leagues must be taken into account, but Olympiacos have shown signs in this season's Champions League that they can be dangerous. Even before their win in the first leg of this tie, only Paris Saint-Germain had beaten them in the competition, and there is no shame in losing to a side boasting the likes of Ibrahimovic, Lavezzi and Cavani, among others.

7.09pmHowever, there have been signs that Olympiacos have begun to get a little complacent in recent weeks. They suffered a European hangover after the first leg, losing back-to-back league games to give them their first domestic defeats of the season. With such a big lead at the top of the table, taking their foot off the pedal is perhaps understandable, but manager Michel will be keen to ensure that no such complacency creeps into their game tonight.

7.11pmThe visitors scraped through to this stage of the competition, finishing second in their group - three points behind PSG and level on points with Benfica. They ousted the Portuguese side - who are now causing Spurs problems in the Europa League - on goal difference, so it would be a major surprise if they were top join the likes of Bayern Munich, Barcelona and Real Madrid in the quarter-finals. They have not reached the last eight of this competition since 1999, a year United fans will remember rather more fondly than 2014.

7.13pmTheir record away from home in this competition is not good, however. They have won just three times in their last 13 Champions League games on the road, with their solitary success this season coming against Anderlecht. Their record in England is even worse, with seven defeats from seven games, conceding at least two goals on every occasion and never scoring more than once.

7.15pmTEAM NEWS: Right, time to bring you some team news! I have already alluded to the fact that both Ferdinand and Giggs start for United, while Moyes has also restored Danny Welbeck to the starting lineup in place of the cup-tied Juan Mata. As for Olympiacos, they start both Campbell and Dominguez - the goalscorers from the first leg - but there is no place for Javier Saviola. Full team news for both sides coming up...

7.17pmMANCHESTER UNITED STARTING XI: De Gea; Rafael, Jones, Ferdinand, Evra; Valencia, Carrick, Giggs, Welbeck; Rooney, Van Persie

7.17pmMANCHESTER UNITED SUBS: Lindegaard, Fellaini, Fletcher, Januzaj, Kagawa, Young, Hernandez

7.19pmOLYMPIACOS STARTING XI: Roberto; Maniatis, Holebas, Manolas, Marcano; Salino, N'Dinga, Perez, Fuster, Campbell; Dominguez

7.19pmOLYMPIACOS SUBS: Megyeri, Papadopoulos, Bong, Paulo Machado, Samaris, Valdez, Vergos

7.21pmSo, what can we make of those two teams? Well, every player is going to be key for United today. They did not show up at all in the first leg and any slip up anywhere on the field could cost them tonight. David de Gea will go into the match knowing that a clean sheet is likely to be vital to his side's progress as, if Olympiacos score a crucial away goal, then United would have to find the net four times.

7.23pmIn front of him, there is no place for Vidic in the squad after his red card on Sunday, so Jones partners Ferdinand in the centre of defence. Ferdinand had a poor game in the first leg and drew plenty of criticism for it, so he will have something to prove this afternoon for sure. Rafael and Evra make up the backline, and they will be looking to get forward whenever possible to give United more width - an area that they have struggled with this season.

7.25pmIt will be interesting to see how Moyes deploys his midfield this evening. Carrick is likely to be joined in the middle by Giggs, who racks up yet another Champions League appearance as he continues to edge towards Raul's record. Valencia, of course, is exclusively a wide man, but to give balance to the attack Welbeck would also have to play as more of a winger than a wide attacker.

7.27pmWayne Rooney is likely to slide in behind Van Persie in the number 10 role, and he will be vital to United's chances of progressing this season. He began the campaign as one of United's best players, but he hasn't quite regained that form since returning from injury. Tonight would be a perfect chance for him to produce a big-match performance, and he is certainly capable of it.

7.29pmVan Persie, meanwhile, will lead the line as he looks to rediscover his shooting boots. United did not create many chances in the first leg, but the best of the lot fell to Van Persie, only for him to blaze his shot over the bar. He can ill afford to be so wasteful this evening as United will need to take every chance they can get. There had been talk over whether Van Persie may be dropped from today's side in a similar way to how Ferguson dropped Rooney at this stage last season, but that would have opened Moyes up to all sorts of criticism had it backfired. Van Persie remains their most potent striker too and, in a match that requires them to score at least twice, players like him need to be in the side.

7.31pmThe biggest problem for United tonight will be playing their way through Olympiacos. The Red Devils looks short of ideas in the first leg and really struggled to break down an Olympiacos defence that wasn't exactly parking the bus. Michel has insisted that his side will not sit back on their lead tonight, but they were certainly have their focus on defence, so it will be up to United to make something happen. Without the guile of Mata and Januzaj - who is on the bench - it remains to be seen if they can do that.

7.33pmIf Michel is indeed true to his word and decides to look for an away goal that could effectively kill the tie off, then it is most likely to come from Dominguez or Campbell. Both scored in the first leg, with the latter - an Arsenal loanee - netting a particularly memorable strike. United will be wiser to the threats they pose now but, with the hosts pushing on for goals, there could well be regular holes at the back for them to exploit.

7.35pmUnited will, however, be pleased to see no Javier Saviola on the teamsheet today. The striker is nearing a return from injury but just couldn't make it back in time for this match, failing to even make the squad. It would have been his 100th appearance in European club competition, but he will now be hoping that that milestone may come in the quarter-finals.

7.37pmThe whole Olympiacos team will be important in terms of defence this evening. Michel will want his side to defend as a unit, and I would not be at all surprised to see 10 players behind the ball for most of the game. The likes of Campbell and Dominguez do have the ability to hurt United on the break, but the focus is likely to be very much on defence today - and understandably so.

7.39pmOf course, the danger with that is that sitting back and inviting pressure from the very first whistle will make it very hard to hold out for the full 90 minutes. A United goal - especially an early one - will get the fans up for the game and give the team momentum too. An away goal would have the adverse effect, so it is a tricky balance that Michel has to find tonight.

7.40pmPREDICTION: Right, we're five minutes from kickoff at Old Trafford, so it is about time I made my prediction! This one is a tough one to call as you'd expect United to come out all guns blazing after Sunday, but they have disappointed so often this season that it is also feasible that they'd exit with a whimper. I think they will lay siege to the Olympiacos defence and will eventually make the breakthrough before forcing extra time. Anything could happen from that point on, but I'll go for United to progress on penalties.

7.42pmSome good news for United is that they have won all four of their home games against Greek opposition in the Champions League era, scoring 15 goals and conceding just the one. However, fans will be well aware that they have already set a number of unwanted records this season - including their first ever defeat to a Greek side in the first leg of this tie - so that could end up being just another to add to the list.

7.44pmThere is one more Champions League tie taking place tonight, and you can follow Borussia Dortmund vs. Zenit here. I will also be keeping you up to date with major events from that game.

1 minKICKOFF: The visitors get us underway in a huge match for United's season. Olympiacos can now focus on the Champions League having wrapped up their domestic league - United simply must focus on it as it is their only remaining avenue of success this season. Can they overhaul their two-goal deficit?

2 minJones goes flying into a challenge having initially dispossessed Campbell, giving the visitors a free kick in a good crossing position. There was plenty of passion shown by Jones there, though.

3 minUnited comfortably deal with the first test as the free kick comes to nothing, while Rooney picks up the ball moments later before trying to slip in Welbeck, but the ball rolls through to the keeper.

4 minThreatening moment from the visitors as Holebas skips away from Rafael to move down the left flank before flashing a dangerous low cross into the box that Jones does well to clear. Olympiacos are not afraid of coming forward in these early stages.

6 minYELLOW CARD! Manolas picks up an early yellow card for a trip on Welbeck as the United man looked to be racing through on goal. The home fans want a red card and the ref certainly has to make the decision, but a yellow is the right choice.

7 minVery strange save from the visiting keeper as Rooney swings the resulting free kick towards goal. It looks to be a routine stop for Jimenez, but he opts to punch it away and is fortunate that Valencia can't take advantage on the edge of the box.

9 minValencia was involved in a clash when trying to control a ball then and he has a whopping shiner above his left eye. It is a huge lump and I'd be surprised if he was able to continue for much longer. He can surely not see out of that eye?!

10 minYELLOW CARD! The referee produces another early card, this time for Dominguez, who brought Valencia down with a mis-timed sliding challenge.

11 minYELLOW CARD! ...and there is another. The ref makes it a hat-trick of cautions in the opening 11 minutes by showing a harsh one to Carrick, who looked to get a toe on the ball.

12 minRooney makes good progress down the right flank and sends a decent cross towards Van Persie, who has made a good run towards the front post. The defender just does enough to deny the initial effort and the ball runs loose momentarily inside the box before being cleared.

14 minStill no signs of that all-important first goal for United, but they are certainly playing with more urgency than in the first leg and on Sunday. They will be very wary of the threat on the counter, though, as Olympiacos have shown signs of being able to break quickly and dangerously.

15 minCHANCE! Big chance for the visitors to get an away goal! Campbell squares up Jones and shows a good burst of pace to get past the defender and reach the byline. He cuts it back into a dangerous area and Perez manages to dig out a shot that goes over the bar. The ball was a bit behind him then, but it was still a very good chance.

17 minThe opening 17 minutes of this match have been a lot more even than the hosts would have liked. An early goal would have worked wonders for them, but as things stand Olympiacos have matched their opponents all over the pitch so far.

18 minOFF THE POST! United are inches away from making the breakthrough! The ball is swung in from the left wing and Rooney rises to flick a header towards the near post. It makes it beyond the despairing dive of Roberto but comes back off the foot of the post. It bounced back into the six-yard box, but the defence was quickest to react to clear.

20 minHaving seen that effort again, credit must go to the keeper. He made a vital stop, just stretching out a fingertip to turn it onto the woodwork. Roberto has had some dodgy moments already in this match, but that was a fine stop.

22 minUPDATE: There has been a goal in the other Champions League last 16 tie tonight, and it is an interesting one as Zenit have taken the lead away to Dortmund. Hulk got the goal to make it 4-3 on aggregate.


25 minGOAL! Manchester United 1-0 Olympiacos (Robin van Persie, penalty)

25 minHuge goal for United! Having conceded three penalties to Liverpool here on Sunday, United have one of their own as Rooney's terrific long ball was controlled by Van Persie in the box before he was barged over by Holebas. It is the correct decision from the ref to point to the spot, and Van Persie makes no mistake with his effort, hitting it hard beyond the keeper. Roberto did get a touch to it, but there was too much power on it for him to keep it out.

27 minThat is exactly what United needed. Had this remained goalless until half time then you would not bet on them getting two in the second half. Now, however, they have more than an hour to look for a second that will force extra time. That is a real lifeline for the hosts.

28 minThey can afford to be a little more cautious now as they will be fully aware that an Olympiacos goal would mean that they need to score three. The visitors threaten there as Dominguez whips a fine ball into the box that Carrick just about deals with inside his own six-yard box.

30 minSuddenly, the likes of Rooney and Van Persie are hounding the ball down very high up the pitch, putting the pressure on the goalkeeper and the defenders in possession. Those two were always going to be vital to United's chances tonight, and it is no coincidence that their goal came as a result of their first piece of link-up play.

32 minMichel is cutting an animated figure on the touchline at the moment. You have to admire the fact that his side have not come here to defend today, but perhaps they would have been better served doing so. He will now be hoping that they can hold out until half time, and then we might see them retreat into their shell a little more.

34 minPossession has been 50/50 in the opening half an hour or so, and Michel will certainly be happy with his side's performance so far despite the scoreline. They have shown that they can threaten on the attack, and he will be fairly confident of his side grabbing an away goal tonight.

35 minSAVE! Very close to a second for United. Evra gets up to meet a cross and diverts a clever flicked header towards the top corner that Roberto does really well to tip behind for another corner.

36 minThat corner is again met by Evra, but this time it is easier for Roberto to deal with as he drops on the ball at the near post to make a comfortable stop.

38 minCarrick is on the receiving end of a heavy challenge in midfield, but the referee turns a blind eye to the tackle. Carrick is not happy, particularly as he was booked for a better tackle earlier in the game.

40 minWHAT A DOUBLE SAVE! Incredible, just incredible from De Gea! The visitors come forward down the right flank and the eventual cross is nodded goalwards from the middle of the box, drawing a fine save from the United keeper. The ball falls back out to a blue shirt, but De Gea somehow recovers in time to make an even better stop at his near post to deny the rebound. How vital could that prove to be?! World class stuff from the keeper.

42 minMoments after that double save United have another penalty shout at the other end as Valencia goes down under the challenge on Manolas. The referee says no to this one, however, and there isn't much complaint from the United winger. It could have been given, though.

44 minVery close to another good chance for the hosts as Evra skips past his man on the left before advancing into the area. He tries to pull the ball back for Rooney, but it gets a deflection on the way through that allows the defence to hack it clear.

45 minThere will be just a minute of added time at the end of this half.

45+1 minGOAL! Manchester United 2-0 Olympiacos (Robin van Persie)

45+1 minWhat a time to get the crucial second goal! Giggs picks out Rooney with a fine pass from midfield and the England international takes it down before sliding a pass into the area for Van Persie to stroke past the keeper. Once again it is the front two linking up that causes problems for the hosts, and suddenly there is a smile on the face and a spring in the step of David Moyes. We're all level on aggregate!

45+1 minHALF TIME: Manchester United 2-0 Olympiacos (2-2 on aggregate)

8.37pmWhat a half of football that was. While the first leg lacked any real excitement for large periods, this match has rarely been without it. Both sides have contributed to an entertaining spectacle, but the half undoubtedly belonged to Manchester United. They have now overhauled the 2-0 deficit from the first leg and will look to push on for an aggregate winner in the second half.

8.39pmAll in all, David Moyes would not have imagined the first half going any better than that. They have certainly not had things all their own way as Olympiacos have threatened on a few occasions, but to have levelled things up on aggregate with 45 minutes left to play will be a huge weight off the shoulders of the beleaguered boss. Things are not over yet, of course, as one goal for the visitors would mean that the hosts need to score twice more, but it is certainly a good start.

8.41pmThe first goal came from the penalty spot after Van Persie had been bundled over inside the box by Holebas. It was a certain penalty and the Dutch striker made no mistake from 12 yards as he fired it past the hand of Roberto, who got a touch but could not keep it out. Giggs deserves credit for a fine ball that released Van Persie in the first place, while the veteran was also involved in the second goal...

8.43pmIt was Giggs who picked out Rooney with his long ball forward, allowing the England striker to move it on for Van Persie to get his second of the game. That goal came right on the stroke of half time, giving United a huge boost and making Moyes's team talk nice and easy at the break. All they have to do is keep up their attacking pressure and tighten things up a little at the back.

8.45pmIt should not be forgotten that the half-time score could have looked a lot worse for the hosts had it not been for the heroics of De Gea. The Spanish keeper made a miraculous double save to keep the visitors from registering an away goal that could well have killed United off. The threat of an away goal is still there, but the hosts will be confident that they can score two more in the second half to nullify any such goal.

8.47pmThe tie is still very finely poised, and the coming 45 minutes will be very interesting indeed. As things stand, we are heading for extra time and possibly penalties, but a goal either way could prove to be the winner. The most important thing for United is to maintain their level of performance without leaving too many holes at the back.

46 minKICKOFF: United get us back underway for the second half, and what a huge half it is for both teams. Who will progress through to the quarter-finals? We will find out soon enough!

48 minGiggs has received a fair amount of criticism in the past couple of seasons for his level of performance, with plenty of suggestions that he is past it. However, he has done very well so far today and his experience is proving to be invaluable in the middle of the park.

49 minSalino receives the ball on the right flank and whips a cross into the box that Perez meets with a poor header that he sends wide. It was not a great effort, but Olympiacos had four men inside the box, which goes to show that they are still searching for that away goal.

51 minRooney breaks free from two players in midfielder before slipping the ball to Welbeck, who looks to be through on goal before being forced to cut back. He does win a free kick in a very good position, though, and now United have a chance for that vital third goal. Van Persie is standing over it. Could this be his hat-trick?

51 minGOAL! Manchester United 3-0 Olympiacos (Robin van Persie)

51 minHe's done it! Cometh the hour, cometh the man. What a huge hat-trick this is for Van Persie, his first in the Champions League. Rooney feints the free kick and the Dutchman takes it on, sending it to the keeper's side and leaving Roberto rooted to the spot. It really is poor from the keeper as the ball was only a couple of yards away from him, but he had started moving to his left and couldn't recover.

53 minOlympiacos' task may not have changed too drastically with that goal - one goal would still put them in the driving seat. However, that is now a necessity, while United are under no obligation to push on for another now.

55 minOlympiacos are not far away from getting that away goal here as Dominguez goes for goal with a free kick. His effort deflects off Van Persie and bounces a couple of yards wide of the post.

56 minThe visitors have another free kick and this time it is whipped in to Perez, who squanders a glorious chance with a header from close range. However, his blushes are spared by the linesman's flag.

57 minOLYMPIACOS SUB: The first change of the night comes from the visitors as Perez is hauled off and Nelson Valdez comes on in his place.

59 minUnited have had nine shots so far tonight, and every single one of them have been on target. That is a huge improvement from their performance in the first leg - and indeed against Liverpool on Sunday - when they very rarely threatened the opposition goal.

60 minGiggs plays a corner short to Valencia before receiving the return pass and cutting into the box. He picks out Phil Jones with a pass, but the defender blazes his shot over the bar under heavy pressure.

61 minYELLOW CARD! Bad news for United and Evra as the skipper for the night gets a yellow card for a foul on Valdez, which means that he would miss the first leg of the quarter-finals should United hold on to this lead.

62 minYELLOW CARD! Stupid from Salino as he gets caught offside and then smashes the ball away in frustration. In addition to earning himself a booking, that also just wastes a bit of time that would be better used by his side trying to get a goal back.

63 minCHANCE! Decent chance for the visitors as Salino's cross into the box is knocked down to Dominguez, who fires a first-time volley over the bar. It wasn't an easy chance as he had to take it early, but it was certainly an opening.

65 minUnited have certainly taken their foot off the pedal since moving 3-0 ahead, and they are now allowing Olympiacos a lot more of the ball. The Greek side have shown signs that they are capable of scoring, so it is a dangerous tactic to employ for the hosts.

67 minSAVE! De Gea is called into action again as he makes a smart stop to deny the visitors. He has had to be at his best at times this evening, but that was a more comfortable stop, despite it being a well-struck shot from Holebas.

69 minMoyes has to try to find a tricky balance in the last 20 minutes of this match. They have already reduced their attacking threat since scoring their third, but a fourth goal would give them some insurance against an Olympiacos away goal. On the other hand, going for a fourth could leave them more susceptible to conceding, so it would be a risky strategy.

70 minUnited come forward with decent numbers, one of whom is Rafael. Rooney gives it out to Valencia, who finds his Brazilian full-back unmarked in the box. However, he doesn't quite look at home in such a good attacking position and eventually fires an ambitious shot that is deflected behind for a corner.

72 minThe home fans, who have been in good voice all evening, are beginning to get a little restless now as their side continue to dig in rather than pushing for a fourth. Olympiacos are in control at the moment, but the home defence is standing firm.

74 minOLYMPIACOS SUB: The hosts make their second change of the match as Salino is replaced by Paulo Machado, who is sporting some impressive facial hair.

76 minCampbell attempts a repeat of his heroics from the first leg, but he doesn't pull it off this time. He cut inside onto his left foot before drilling a low strike towards the bottom corner from range, but it went comfortably wide of the post.

77 minMANCHESTER UNITED SUB: Valencia trots off the field later than I was expecting giving his eye injury. I'm not quite sure how he has managed to see out of it throughout the match, but he seems to have coped fine. He is replaced by Ashley Young.

79 minSAVE! Another good stop from De Gea as Dominguez skips past his man before hammering the ball across goal. It takes a deflection on the way through which diverts it goalwards, but De Gea is alert enough to adjust and make the stop at his near post. The rebound eventually falls to Campbell, who lashes an effort high and wide.

81 minDespite United's comprehensive lead, the possession remain dead even between the two sides. United have simply used theirs more effectively, although it must be said that the visitors probably deserve a goal for their efforts tonight. As thing stand, a goal would still see them through. It is almost next goal wins now.

82 minMANCHESTER UNITED SUB: Welbeck has had a good impact on the team today, creating more space for the likes of Rooney and Van Persie. He goes off to be replaced by Darren Fletcher, making his first Champions League appearance for 15 months.

83 minOLYMPIACOS SUB: The visitors also make a change as Nikolaos Vergos comes on for David Fuster.

84 minSHOT! Rooney whips a free kick into the middle that is cleared as far as Fletcher on the edge. He resists the crowd's urges to shoot, instead laying it back for Rooney, who bends a powerful effort well wide of the post. You could see what he was trying to do there.

86 minIt is not often that you can say a team leading 3-0 faces a nervy final five minutes, but that certainly applies to United now. A late goal for the visitors would almost certainly see Olympiacos through now as United would have very little time to get another. Remember, they need to win by three clear goals.

87 minJones makes a vital interception at the front post to nod a cross behind for a corner. There is a tension about the hosts now. These final five minutes could well be the biggest of their season so far.

89 minVan Persie goes down having received a knee to his calf. It looked like a painful one, but he should be able to continue. At the very least, he will waste a bit of time now and any sub would take up another minute or so.

90 minYELLOW CARDS! Marcano goes into the book for his protests again the length of time Van Persie is staying down for as they strap him to a stretcher and take him off. Ferdinand then takes issue with Marcano and receives a yellow himself.

90+2 minThere will be five more minutes for United to endure before they can finally relax as Champions League quarter-finalists.

90+2 minMANCHESTER UNITED SUB: Van Persie is carried off the field on a stretcher, which is a worrying sign for the hosts. Fellaini comes on for the hat-trick hero.

90+3 minFellaini contribution is clear here. He keeps the ball in the corner before using his strength to hold off the defenders and win another corner.

90+5 minFULL TIME: Manchester United 3-0 Olympiacos (Man Utd win 3-2 on aggregate)


9.39pmThe referee ends those nervy final minutes for United and Old Trafford erupts in delight as the Red Devils produce a memorable European comeback to book their place in the Champions League quarter-finals. In a season of lows, this is very much a high for Moyes - possibly his greatest moment as United manager so far.

9.41pmOf course, it is worth noting that United have not exactly salvaged their season with this result, especially considering that they were expected to ease through before the first leg. However, it could prove to be a turning point in United's season and allow them to kick on in the Premier League. It may have also saved Moyes's job for now.

9.43pmAll three goals came from Robin van Persie, but it was a much-improved performance from United all round tonight. De Gea was superb in goal, while Rooney and Giggs also put in very important shifts. It is heartbreak for Olympiacos, who would have been dreaming of a major scalp to cap a week in which they also won the league, but they leave England having still never won on these shores.

9.45pmRight, that is all we have time for this evening! Thank you very much for joining Sports Mole on a memorable European night at Old Trafford. United claim a 3-0 win over Olympiacos to overturn their two-goal deficit and progress through to the last eight of the Champions League thank to a Van Persie hat-trick. I will leave you with our match report, and be sure to stick around for reaction and analysis, which will be up shortly. From me, though, it is goodbye for now!

Rio Ferdinand of Manchester United controls the ball during the match between the A-League All-Stars and Manchester United on July 20, 2013
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