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Can Man Utd overturn Bielsa's Athletic?

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Alistair Magowan - BBC Sport | 10:08 UK time, Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Walking away from Old Trafford last Thursday as Athletic Bilbao continued Manchester United's woes in Europe this season, there was a nagging feeling that the hosts had underestimated their Spanish opponents.

Roared on by 7,000 travelling supporters, Athletic's thrilling 3-2 victory in the last 16 Europa League tie leaves Sir Alex Ferguson's side needing to score at least twice in order to progress. And apart from the 6-1 defeat inflicted by Manchester City earlier this season, it is hard to recall a recent game where the Red Devils have been so outclassed.

As former Valencia and Liverpool boss Rafael Benitez told the Football Focus Forum this week: "I was talking with some former Athletic players and they were telling me that maybe United didn't realise how strong and how good Athletic could be."

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