Former Man City goalkeeper haunts Manchester United in Europa League final defeat
Manchester United have been devastated after losing the Europa League final in heartbreaking fashion, and ex-Manchester City man Geronimo Rulli is the cause of the pain.
United were lucky enough to lift their first trophy since 2017 on Wednesday, but wasted that chance dramatically by losing a spectacular penalty shootout to Villarreal.
Gerard Moreno put the Yellow Submarine in the lead in the first half before a strike from Edinson Cavani restored parity, but those are the only highlights of the otherwise turgid 120 minutes.
The game ending 1-1 after looming overtime penalties and the shootout was a much more entertaining affair.
All of the first 20 kicks were scored with all outfielder on both sides found the back of the net, leaving it to the goalies to take their turn.
Villarreal’s Rulli was the first to intervene and he smashed his shot straight into the roof of the net.
The Argentine was briefly on City’s books after being signed from Uruguayan side Maldonado for £ 4.23million in the summer of 2016.
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A day later he was sent on loan to Real Sociedad, where he was successful enough to earn a permanent move the following summer, with City making a profit as they were given fees of £ 6.30million. . A loan spell at Montpellier followed before joining Villarreal in 2020.
After scoring his penalty, Rulli had to face his counterpart David de Gea. With all the pressure on the Spaniard to score, he hit a low, tame shot that Rulli descended to his left to save to spark wild celebrations and inflict an agonizing defeat on United.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer awaits his first trophy as the United boss continues, as City prepare for Saturday’s Champions League final.