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FOOTBALL

United walk all over Bayer Leverkusen 5-0

Bayer Leverkusen were overwhelmed by Manchester United on Wednesday night as the English side confirmed their place in the Champions League's knock-out phase with an emphatic 5-0 win.

United walk all over Bayer Leverkusen 5-0
Jonny Evans (l) takes Manchester to 3-0 against Leverkusens goalie Bernd Leno. Photo: DPA

David Moyes' side ran riot in what was United's biggest away win in Europe since beating Shamrock Rovers 6-0 in September 1957 in the now defunct European Champions Clubs' Cup.

"This is probably the best performance of the season. For us to come away from home and score five goals is really special," said Moyes.

A volley from right-back Antonio Valencia and an own goal from Leverkusen centre-back Emir Spahic gave United a commanding early lead before defender Jonny Evans added a third with an hour gone.

England defender Chris Smalling added their fourth on 77 minutes after he met Wayne Rooney's chip at the back post.

Nani then latched on to a Ryan Giggs long ball for a fine solo goal for the fifth on 88 minutes with the Leverkusen defence in tatters.

Rooney proved he can create as well as finish as he had a hand in the first four goals in an outstanding performance.

It was his cross which Valencia converted and his free-kick which Spahic headed into his own net.

His shot led to Evans' goal and his deft chip beat Leverkusen's goalkeeper Bernd Leno and found Smalling unmarked for the fourth.

United remain top of Group A

The result keeps David Moyes' United top of Group A and three points ahead of second-placed Shakhtar Donetsk, who United host at Old Trafford in a fortnight.

Donetsk's 4-0 win at home to Real Sociedad means Leverkusen drop to third in the group and a point behind the Ukrainians.

Having offered little resistance against United, Leverkusen now need to win at Real Sociedad in their final game, and hope United beat Donetsk.

Leverkusen deservedly suffered what was their first home defeat in 14 games since losing 2-1 to Bayern Munich in the Bundesliga back in March.

"When you conceded five goals, there isn't much more to say," said Leverkusen striker Stefan Kiessling.

"We should never have allowed them so many chances to shoot."

Now unbeaten in 11 matches since September, United got their wish to be able to focus on improving their sixth place in the Premier League.

Leverkusen allowed United to dominate

Despite all their pre-match talk about not being intimidated, as they were for their 4-2 defeat at Old Trafford in September, Leverkusen allowed United to dominate.

United's opener came when Kagawa won the ball in midfield, squared to Giggs, who found Rooney on the left wing.    

The England striker floated his pass over two Leverkusen defenders and Kagawa, but found Valencia at the back post on 22 minutes.

The Premier League side doubled their tally when Rooney's free-kick was headed into his own net by Spahic, under pressure from United right-back Chris Smalling on 30 minutes.

Leverkusenhad a brief passage of pressure just before the hour mark, but at the other end, Rooney slipped his marker and threatened a third goal.

It came moments later from a corner when Rooney forced Leno into a save and centre-back Evans collected the rebound, rounded the stranded Bayer goalkeeper and tapped home on 66 minutes.

The fourth came 13 minutes from time when Kagawa slid his pass through the Leverkusen defence for Rooney to chip over Leno and give Smalling the simplest of tap-ins.

With the defence all at sea, Nani met a deft long ball from Giggs, rounded Leno and fired home for a fine individual goal which summed up United's night.

READ MORE: Scary German landing spooks Man United

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FOOTBALL

British football teams allowed to skip Germany’s quarantine for Euro 2020

Germany's government announced on Tuesday it will allow England, Scotland and Wales to enter the country without quarantine to play at Euro 2020 despite a recent rise in cases linked to the Delta variant of Covid-19 in Britain.

British football teams allowed to skip Germany's quarantine for Euro 2020
One of the venues for Euro 2020 is in Munich. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Sven Hoppe

The three teams could potentially reach the quarter-final held in Munich on July 2nd.

If that were the case, they would be exempt from the rule that travellers from the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland must currently observe a 14-day isolation period due to the virus strain of concern – Delta – first identified in India.

“The people accredited for the European football Championship are exempt from the quarantine obligation, even after arriving from an area impacted by a variant” Berlin said in a statement.

“This exemption concerns all the people who have been accredited by the organising committee for the preparation, participation, the holding and the follow-up of international sporting events,” it added.

The exemption does not include fans, who will be obliged to follow German government self-isolation rules.

Germany declared the UK a ‘virus variant area of concern’ on May 23rd due to rising cases linked to the Delta variant in parts of the country. 

READ ALSO: Germany makes UK ‘virus variant area of concern’: How does it affect you?

This reclassification came just seven days after the UK was put back on Germany’s list at the lowest risk level, and barely a month after it was taken off all risk lists completely.

The ban was put in place despite the UK’s relatively low Covid rates as a precautionary measure.

A general ban on entry is in place for people coming from countries on the ‘virus variant’ list – such as India and Brazil – the highest of Germany’s risk categories. 

There are some exceptions for entering from these countries – for example German residents and citizens. However, anyone who does enter from Germany is required to submit a Covid-19 test before boarding the flight and must quarantine for 14 days on arrival, regardless of whether they are fully vaccinated or not.

READ ALSO: Germany’s new relaxed quarantine and testing rules after travel

Euro 2020 starts on Friday as Italy host Turkey in Rome with the Bavarian city hosting three group games as well as the last-eight match.

Around 14,000 fans will be allowed into the Allianz Arena for the fixtures.

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