Watch: Champs League striker left in tears as United keeper's point-blank save robs him



Associated Press

A solid performance by goalkeeper David De Gea helped Manchester United hold Sevilla to a 0-0 draw in their first-leg match in the last 16 of the Champions League this morning.

The hosts played well and had most of the significant scoring chances but could not get past the Spanish goalkeeper.

Among De Gea's saves was a spectacular one-handed reflex stop after a close-range header by Sevilla forward Luis Muriel just before halftime.

The Colombian forward was in perfect position to score from just a few metres out but his firm header wasn't placed far enough from De Gea and the goalkeeper quickly outstretched his right arm to tip the ball over the crossbar.

In disbelief, Muriel embraced the left post and closed his eyes for a few moments.

"I lament that missed chance," Muriel said. "I could have gone for the corner but I decided to strike it harder instead of placing it. De Gea is a great goalkeeper and made a great save."

A few moments before Muriel's header, De Gea had already been forced to tip a header by Steven N'Zonzi over the crossbar.

The scoreless result left the tie open heading into next month's second leg in Manchester, when Sevilla will be trying to make it to the quarterfinals for the first time and United will look to return to the last eight after three seasons.

It was another great defensive performance by United, which has kept nine clean sheets in its last 11 matches in all competitions. Jose Mourinho's team has the best defense in the Premier League with 19 goals conceded in 27 matches.

Sevilla, a five-time Europa League winner, hadn't been held to a scoreless draw at its Ramon Sanchez-Pizjuan Stadium in 62 consecutive matches in European competitions, dating back to 2005.

In one of United's few chances, forward Romelu Lukaku had a goal disallowed for controlling the ball with his arm before finding the net from inside the area with about 10 minutes left.

Mourinho raised some eyebrows by leaving Paul Pogba on the bench but had to bring the midfielder on less than 20 minutes into the match because of an injury to Ander Herrera.

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