Erik ten Hag says he had no choice but to make the substitutions he did in Manchester United’s draw against Sevilla in the UEFA Europa League.

Man United look to be in control in the game after a Marcel Sabitzer brace gave them a 2-0 lead going into the break.

However, the team failed to hold onto the lead as they surrendered the advantage to draw 2-2 at Old Trafford in the first leg of the semifinal tie.

Raphael Varane had to be substituted at halftime with Harry Maguire taking his place because of an injury, and Maguire would subsequently be at fault for Sevilla’s second.

In the second half, the United manager made three substitutions after taking off Bruno Fernandes, Anthony Martial, and Jadon Sancho while his team was still ahead.

Ten Hag has been criticised for the substitutions he made with many believing they were key to Sevilla getting back into the game but the Dutchman said he had already been warned about two of his players after they were cautioned by the referee.

“I had to make them,” Ten Hag said.

“There was no other way. Rapha was injured, that was the first I had to make. And then Anthony Martial, first start after a long period, so we had to make him on the 60.

“Then Bruno: I got the warning from the refs, he was short before a second booking and the same for Antony dos Santos. So I had to make the subs, I had no other choice.

“But still we controlled the game. Still, we had to score the third goal. It was a good action from Pelle and Ty [Tyrell Malacia] has a big chance for 3-0 in 81st minute.

“And then the last 10 minutes of the game everything was against us. We have to be smarter, we switch off for the first goal, then we get the injury of Licha [Martinez], another bad luck.

“Both goals against, both deflected, what can you do? Sometimes you have bad days and bad luck. Tonight was not our night.”

United will need to win in Spain if they are to make the final four of the competition. They are also yet to beat Sevilla in any of their four meetings.

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