Harry Maguire played as a makeshift striker for Manchester United against Real Sociedad as they pushed for a second goal at San Sebastian.
United needed to beat group winners Sociedad by two clear goals to top their Europa League group and avoid playing a play-off against one of the sides from the Champions League.
The Red Devils went 1-0 up in the first half through 18-year-old wonderkid Alejandro Garnacho, who scored his first ever goal after an assist from his idol Cristiano Ronaldo.
Sociedad, who finished as group winners on goal difference after both ended up on 15 points, drew a sublime double save from from David de Gea.
But they had to withstand some heavy pressure from United, who went fully route one in attempt to get the all-important goal.
In the 82nd minute, captain Maguire was brought on alongside Fred, with Garnacho and Christian Eriksen making way.
The England international partnered Ronaldo up top for the latter stages, with United desperately pumping in crosses and long balls for their No.5 to get his head on right up until the 95th minute.
In his surprise cameo, Maguire also found himself wandering into wide positions to try and link the play in some quite incredible scenes. Twitter was awash with reaction over Erik ten Hag's 'Plan B' involving Maguire playing up top.
There has not been many times I’ve questioned Ten Haag but WTF is Harry Maguire doing up front when rashford is there?? And Ronnie???— Jason (@jason_66) November 3, 2022
Harry Maguire up front I’m here for it 😂— Scott Saunders (@_scottsaunders) November 3, 2022
The year is 2022 and Harry Maguire is partnering Cristiano Ronaldo upfront for Man United 😅 pic.twitter.com/UqeKuS3Res— ESPN UK (@ESPNUK) November 3, 2022
Just watched 12 minutes of Harry Maguire playing striker pic.twitter.com/vBVIOdfTfZ— Luke (@ekulkun) November 3, 2022
How do i tell my kids that i watched Harry Maguire and Cristiano Ronaldo play upfront together— Ace🥤 (@speeds_c) November 3, 2022
Cristiano Ronaldo has had a glittering career but forming a strike partnership with Harry Maguire must be the highlight.— Midnite Football (@MidniteFtbl) November 3, 2022
The video Erik Ten Hag saw before bringing in Harry Maguire as a strike pic.twitter.com/MBUaVrRTwh— Converseer (@converseernews) November 3, 2022
Maguire caused chaos and provided entertainment but couldn't help United get the goal they needed. They will now play in the Europa League knockout play-off round and could face the likes of Barcelona, Juventus, Ajax, Sevilla or Sporting CP in a two-legged affair.
The draw will be made on Monday in Nyon, Switzerland.
Featured Image Credit: Alamy
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