Man Utd marches on to Wembley after winning the first leg against Nottingham Forest

Manchester United set one foot on Wembley Way after taking control of the Carabao Cup semi-final with a 3-0 first leg win over Nottingham Forest.

First-half goals from Marcus Rashford and Wout Weghorst and Bruno Fernandes’ third-place finish at the City Ground mean only a miraculous turnaround in the second leg next week will keep United away from playing the League Cup final at the national stadium next month.

Rashford’s strike was a moment of individual brilliance as he ran 50 yards and converted. Weghorst celebrated his first goal for the club since his loan spell at Burnley, while Fernandes effectively ended the post-death draw.

The victory put United on the verge of returning to Wembley for their first domestic appearance since losing the FA Cup final in 2018, and Erik ten Hag will have the opportunity to end the club’s trophy drought that has been ongoing since 2017. first season at Old Trafford.

United almost secured a place in the Carabao Cup final

United almost secured a place in the Carabao Cup final (Tim Goode/PA)

Forest, whose League Cup history is almost as rich as United’s with four titles in 12 years under Brian Clough, will see it as a missed opportunity to head to Old Trafford next week with something to hold on to.

They had a strong period in the first half with Sam Surridge having a disallowed goal and Morgan Gibbs-White and Brennan Johnson having decent chances.

But the Ten Hag team have sailed for victory on the shores of Trentino and will be circling February 26 on their calendars for a day at Wembley while Forest will have to target their former manager Clough in hopes of a miracle.

The two sides met in the famous 1992 League Cup final at Wembley, which United won thanks to a Brian McClair goal, and the current harvest has shown that they want to return there this year.

Ten Hag indicated his strongest team possible and was rewarded with an early lead as Rashford’s sublime form continued after a brilliant individual goal.

Erik ten Hag is looking to finish the trophy at United in his first season

Erik ten Hag tries to finish a trophy at United in his first season (Tim Goode/PA)

The England international, who had scored in the previous three rounds of this competition, took the ball in his own half, carried it to the other end of the pitch, threw himself between Joe Worrall and Remo Freuler before beating Wayne Hennessey at close range. Post.

It was his 10th goal in 10 games since restarting after the World Cup, and his form was the driving force behind United’s impressive run of results.

The visitors scored more goals in a dominant start, but Antony hit the post twice from good positions after an intervention from the right.

Forest were composed in the first 15 minutes but they came alive and thought they had equalized in the 23rd minute.

Wout Weghorst (right) scored his first goal for the club

Wout Weghorst (right) scored his first goal for the club (Tim Goode/PA)

A brilliant counter-attack saw Gibbs-White powering Sam Surridge for a great finish in the bottom corner on the first try.

However, this was ruled out after VAR ruled Surridge’s knee offside.

Forest in their favor didn’t let this disappointment affect them and continued to push forward and had chances to equalize.

David de Gea made a save flight to protect himself from a Gustavo Scarpa volley from the edge of the box, then well-stopped a Gibbs-White attack before seeing Johnson score after missing several tackles for United.

Having absorbed this pressure, United scored a second killer goal after the first half.

They maneuvered the ball adeptly from back to front, and after Hennessey made Antony’s shot, Weghorst reacted first by shooting into the goal and breaking United’s duck.

The hosts struggled to recreate the verve they showed in the first half and United kept them at bay.

Indeed, it was the visitors, who won 8-1 on their last visit to the City Ground in 1999, who consolidated their control of the draw, as after Christian Eriksen hit the crossbar, Fernandes scored a low score in the 89th minute.

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