Champions League: Real Sociedad v Manchester United - LIVE! - Live coverage - The Independent

Champions League: Real Sociedad v Manchester United - LIVE!

By Jack de Menezes
by Jack de Menezes on Nov 5, 2013 at 9:51 PM

Welcome to The Independent's live commentary of tonight's Champions League Group A encounter between Real Sociedad and Manchester United at the Anoeta Stadium.

Follow the latest news and updates below...
  • Welcome to The Independent's live commentary of tonight's Champions League Group A encounter between Real Sociedad and Manchester United.
    11/5/2013 5:44:16 PM
  • 11/5/2013 5:46:47 PM
  • 11/5/2013 6:06:16 PM
  • The build-up to this match has been slightly overshadowed by the news that Sascha Riether chose not to appeal his charge for stamping on United's Adnan Januzaj, and the Fulham defender apologised via Twitter to the winger earlier today:

    "I want to say I am sorry to Adnan Januzai. It was very unlike me and I can only say that frustration got the better of me.

    "I want the fans to know that I will be working hard to stay fit and will be ready to continue fighting for the Club as soon as I am able. I will accept the consequences of my actions, and hope to put it behind me when I return."

    To read more of what Riether has to say, CLICK HERE.
    11/5/2013 6:10:43 PM
  • A couple of teams can actually qualify for the next round with victory tonight, while others can go a long way to booking their place: 
    The fourth round of the Champions League group stages gets underway tonight with both Manchester United and Manchester City in action. Both clubs take a major step towards qualification for the last-16 with wins against Real Sociedad and CSKA Moscow respectively, but a number of teams can actually book their place in the draw for the next round today.
    To read the permutations of tonight's action, CLICK HERE.
    11/5/2013 6:14:11 PM
  • So how tough is the challenge that United face tonight?
    Manchester United will have to defy the history books to come away from Real Sociedad’s Anoeta Stadium with three points. The last time the Red Devils defeated a Spanish side on their own turf in European competition was back in 2002 when goals from David Beckham and Ruud van Nistelrooy were enough to seal a first-leg quarter-final victory over Deportivo La Coruna.
    To read more of Samuel Stevens match preview, CLICK HERE.
    11/5/2013 6:17:12 PM
  • The players got to see the Anoeta pitch last night, much to Wayne Rooney's happiness

    11/5/2013 6:20:54 PM
  • Ian Herbert is our man in San Sebastian tonight. Here's a quick flick from tonight's match-day program:

    11/5/2013 6:26:17 PM
  • We want to hear from both United and City fans. Are you confident ahead of tonight's matches? More so, do you feel you're on your way to the next round even at this early stage? Comment in and we'll re-post your views.
    11/5/2013 6:29:39 PM
  • While a number of United fans are confident of a good result tonight, it's worth noting that Sociedad have scored 10 goals in their last three games, including a 5-0 win over Osasuna on Saturday. Is anyone predicting an upset tonight?
    11/5/2013 6:35:44 PM
  • Here comes the team news...
    11/5/2013 6:48:08 PM
  • Manchester United: De Gea; Smalling, Ferdinand, Vidic, Evra; Valencia Fellaini Giggs Kagawa; Rooney Hernandez.
    Subs: Lindegaard, Büttner, Jones, Anderson, Nani, Young, van Persie.
    Real Sociedad: Bravo; Martínez, Mikel, Iñigo, De la Bella; M. Bergara, Pardo, Zurutuza; Vela, Agirretxe, Griezmann
    Subs: Zubikarai, Ansotegi, Cadamuro, Elustondo, X.Prieto, Chory Castro, Seferovic.
    11/5/2013 6:49:41 PM
  • David Moyes makes a number of changes to his side that beat Fulham on the weekend with Rafael, Evans, Jones, Cleverley, Januzaj, and van Persie dropping out of the side, with Smalling, Ferdinand, Fellaini, Giggs, Kagawa and Hernandez coming in. Januzaj doesn't make the bench while both Rafel and Evans are injured.

    Real Sociedad manager Jagoba Arrasate makes four changes to the side that beat Osasuna 5-0 on Saturday, with Mikel, De la Bella, Bergara and Agirretxe coming to replace Ansotegui, Angel, Elustondo and Castro.

    11/5/2013 6:57:36 PM
  • With Ryan Giggs named int he starting line-up the Welshman will be making his 950th appearance for the club. A truly incredible feat, but will he make the milestone of 1000 appearances?
    11/5/2013 6:58:51 PM
  • So how do you feel about that line-up?



    11/5/2013 7:01:51 PM
  • Manager David Moyes said in the build-up to tonight's match that he will not be taking Sociedad lightly, but has he done so with that line-up? He's made six changes to the side that beat Fulham 3-1 on the weekend, giving a number of fringe players a chance to shine.
    11/5/2013 7:11:32 PM
  • One of those players is Javier Hernandez, who caused a stir this week by retweeting an article that claimed he would have to leave Old Trafford if he is starved of first-team football. It seems it might have worked...
    11/5/2013 7:12:42 PM
  • A few concerns about seeing Kagawa and Giggs in the same side...


    11/5/2013 7:15:04 PM
  • Under 30 minutes till we're underway. We'll also be keeping you updated with the latest from the Etihad where Manchester City take on CSKA Moscow.
    11/5/2013 7:18:45 PM
  • Tributes for Ryan Giggs are flooding in on Twitter ahead of his 950th appearance:
    But not everyone is in a celebratory mood for Giggs' inclusion...
    11/5/2013 7:26:38 PM
  • Here's how the teams will form up:

    11/5/2013 7:28:23 PM
  • The new Republic of Ireland management team of Martin O'Neill and Roy Keane are at pitchside as part of ITV's coverage. Fair to say Keane isn't amused by any jokes aimed at his expense...they soon stop.
    11/5/2013 7:32:37 PM


  • 11/5/2013 7:34:49 PM
  • Just under 10 minutes to go. Make sure you get your vote in before kick-off. As it stands, 50% of you think one team will miss out on qualification from the group stages. The question is, who?
    11/5/2013 7:37:12 PM
  • Manchester United manager is hoping that his side are quick out of the blocks, having gone behind in a number of recent games and forcing a comeback. The players are in the tunnel and we're not far off getting underway.
    11/5/2013 7:40:58 PM
  • The new Irish management combination of Martin O'Neill and former United captain Roy Keane

    11/5/2013 7:42:29 PM
  • Conditions are wet and windy - it's like being at home! Here we go...
    11/5/2013 7:45:09 PM
  • 1 mins: The match is underway!
    11/5/2013 7:45:30 PM
  • 1 mins: Inigo Martinez takes an early knock, as he catches a stray elbow from Hernandez on the side of the head. No malice or intent, and Martinez is good to continue.
    11/5/2013 7:46:36 PM
  • 3 mins: Valencia is looking to get into the game early, and there's a lot of pressure coming down the United right-flank. The Ecuadorian sends in a swinging cross, but it's easily dealt with.
    11/5/2013 7:48:07 PM
  • 4 mins: Sociedad react well and enjoy some possession on the right of the United box. Manchester City have already gone in front via a Sergio Aguero penalty.
    11/5/2013 7:49:44 PM
  • 5 mins: Smalling gets a telling off from referee Nicola Rizzoli for knocking goalkeeper Bravo to the floor after he'd gathered the ball - about 10 seconds after, actually. No card though, just a free-kick.
    11/5/2013 7:51:12 PM
  • 7 mins: Valencia tries to thread a ball through the middle for Rooney, but the Englishman is caught flat-footed and the ball rolls through to Bravo.
    11/5/2013 7:52:10 PM
  • 8 mins: As expected, Kagawa has started on the left with Valencia on the right and Rooney on the middle, giving Giggs a central roll alongside Fellaini. The Welshman tries to chip over the Sociedad defence for Evra, but the defender can't keep it in play and it's out for a goal kick.
    11/5/2013 7:53:52 PM
  • 10 mins: Good play from Fellaini and Rooney sees Kagawa break down the left, with Evra overlapping. The Frenchman crosses into the box for Rooney, whose little flick allows Kagawa to have a shot. It's off-target, but deflected out for a corner which comes to nothing.
    11/5/2013 7:56:08 PM
  • 12 mins: Kagawa gives away a free kick for impeding Bergara, but the cross floats over all the players and safely into the hands of De Gea.
    11/5/2013 7:57:34 PM
  • 14 mins: Sociedad have their first sustained period of attack, with Griezmann looking to stretch Smalling out wide with limited success so far.
    11/5/2013 7:59:55 PM
  • 16 mins: First sign of pressure, as Sociedad press the United defence, forcing them to play it back to De Gea who kicks it straight out for a throw. A half-chance for Sociedad, but De Gea is out quickly to claim the ball and United counter, but Bravo is equal to it and gathers the ball comfortably.
    11/5/2013 8:01:58 PM
  • 18 mins: Rooney gives the ball away in midfield and United are under attack, but the England international does well to work back and win the ball with a good tackle. united haven't settled yet, and Sociedad are having the larger share of possession, but very little to shout about so far. 
    11/5/2013 8:03:27 PM
  • 19 mins: Chance...Rooney works the ball across the box from right to left. it comes to Kagawa who has a few metres of space, and he needs no second invitation to shoot, but it's straight at Bravo. Better from United though.
    11/5/2013 8:04:58 PM
  • 21 mins: Hernandez drops deep and tries to chip through for Rooney, but Inigo has it covered. Rooney certainly looks the most lively man out there so far. City have gone 2-0 and it's Aguero again, and it looks like they're on their way to the last 16 for the first time.
    11/5/2013 8:07:06 PM
  • 23 mins: Corner for Sociedad, and it;s a good delivery into the heart of the box. About five players leap for it, with not one connecting, and Fellaini ends up on the floor as the ball trickles back out to safety.
    11/5/2013 8:08:17 PM
  • 25 mins: Hernandez looks to link with Giggs, but his pass is careless and gives the ball away on halfway. Sociedad don't look like converting a chance at the moment though.
    11/5/2013 8:10:49 PM
  • 26 mins: Inigo gives the ball away, then wins it back from Rooney who takes a swipe at the defenders ankles. Careful Wayne...referee Rizzoli is more interested in berating Inigo though for demanding that Rooney be booked for the challenge. Either way, it's all a bit of nothing in the end.
    11/5/2013 8:12:40 PM
  • 28 mins: Half a chance for Sociedad, as Agirretxe links with Zuretuza, who returns the favour in the box with a cross from the right. Agirretxe hits it first time but it's wide of the goal.
    11/5/2013 8:14:31 PM
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