The 2021 UEFA Europa League Final was the final match of the 2020–21 UEFA Europa League, the 50th season of Europe's secondary club football tournament organised by UEFA, and the 12th season since it was renamed from the UEFA Cup to the UEFA Europa League. It was played on 26 May 2021 at the Stadion Gdańsk in Gdańsk, Poland, between Spanish club Villarreal and English club Manchester United.
|Event||2020–21 UEFA Europa League|
|After extra time|
Villarreal won 11–10 on penalties
|Date||26 May 2021|
|Venue||Stadion Gdańsk, Gdańsk|
|Man of the Match||Étienne Capoue (Villarreal)|
|Referee||Clément Turpin (France)|
|Weather||Partly cloudy night|
11 °C (52 °F)
The final was originally scheduled to be played at the Ramón Sánchez Pizjuán Stadium in Seville, Spain. However, due to the postponement and relocation of the 2020 final to Cologne, the final hosts were shifted back a year, with Gdańsk instead hosting the 2021 final, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic in Europe.
Villarreal won the match 11–10 on penalties following a 1–1 draw after extra time, thus winning its first trophy in the competition. As winners, Villarreal earned the right to play against the winners of the 2020–21 UEFA Champions League, Chelsea, in the 2021 UEFA Super Cup. They also qualified for the group stage of the 2021–22 UEFA Champions League.
In the following table, finals until 2009 were in the UEFA Cup era, since 2010 were in the UEFA Europa League era.
|Team||Previous final appearances (bold indicates winners)|
|Manchester United||1 (2017)|
The match was played at the Stadion Gdańsk in Gdańsk, Poland. At the meeting of the UEFA Executive Committee in Kyiv in May 2018, the stadium was initially selected to host the 2020 UEFA Europa League Final, but when the COVID-19 pandemic forced UEFA to move the latter stages of the 2019–20 competition to Germany, the UEFA Executive Committee delayed Stadion Gdańsk's hosting of the Europa League final to 2021. The original venues for the 2021 and 2022 finals were also delayed by a year.
This was the first UEFA club match hosted at the stadium, which was one of the venues for UEFA Euro 2012. It was the second UEFA club competition final to be played in Poland, as the 2015 UEFA Europa League Final was played at the National Stadium in Warsaw. When the stadium was selected to host the 2020 final, it was known as Stadion Energa Gdańsk, so due to UEFA sponsorship regulations, marketing materials for the match referred to the venue as Gdańsk Stadium. Although the sponsorship deal with Energa was ended in November 2020, the stadium continued to be known as Gdańsk Stadium for the final.
An open bidding process was launched on 22 September 2017 by UEFA to select the venues of the finals of the UEFA Champions League, UEFA Europa League, and UEFA Women's Champions League in 2020. Associations had until 31 October 2017 to express interest, and bid dossiers had to be submitted by 1 March 2018. Associations hosting matches at UEFA Euro 2020 were not allowed to bid for the 2020 UEFA Europa League final.
UEFA announced on 3 November 2017 that two associations had expressed interest in hosting the 2020 UEFA Europa League final.
|Portugal||Estádio do Dragão||Porto||50,035||Also bid for 2020 UEFA Super Cup and 2021 UEFA Champions League Final|
The Stadion Gdańsk in Gdańsk was selected by the UEFA Executive Committee during their meeting in Kyiv on 24 May 2018.
On 17 June 2020, the UEFA Executive Committee announced that due to the postponement and relocation of the 2020 final, Gdańsk would instead host the 2021 final.
This was Villarreal's fourth ever final in an official knockout tournament, having played previously three in UEFA competitions, all in the UEFA Intertoto Cup, winning it in 2003 and 2004. On the other hand, this was head coach Unai Emery's fifth European final, all in the UEFA Europa League; he won three successive titles with Sevilla in 2014, 2015 and 2016, before losing in 2019 with Arsenal.
This was Manchester United's second UEFA Cup/Europa League final, having won the only previous occasion in 2017. Overall, it was their eighth European major final between the European Cup/Champions League, Cup Winners' Cup, and the UEFA Cup/Europa League. Ole Gunnar Solskjær reached his first final as the club's manager, having scored the winning goal in the 1999 UEFA Champions League Final playing for them, exactly 22 years prior.
The clubs previously met four times, in the 2005–06 and 2008–09 UEFA Champions League group stages. All games ended in goalless draws.
Road to the finalEdit
Note: In all results below, the score of the finalist is given first (H: home; A: away).
|Europa League||Champions League|
|Opponent||Result||Group stage (EL, CL)||Opponent||Result|
|Sivasspor||5–3 (H)||Matchday 1||Paris Saint-Germain||2–1 (A)|
|Qarabağ||3–1 (A)[a]||Matchday 2||RB Leipzig||5–0 (H)|
|Maccabi Tel Aviv||4–0 (H)||Matchday 3||İstanbul Başakşehir||1–2 (A)|
|Maccabi Tel Aviv||1–1 (A)||Matchday 4||İstanbul Başakşehir||4–1 (H)|
|Sivasspor||1–0 (A)||Matchday 5||Paris Saint-Germain||1–3 (H)|
|Qarabağ||3–0 (H)[b]||Matchday 6||RB Leipzig||2–3 (A)|
|Group I winners
|Final standings||Group H third place
|Opponent||Agg.||1st leg||2nd leg||Knockout phase||Opponent||Agg.||1st leg||2nd leg|
|Red Bull Salzburg||4–1||2–0 (A)||2–1 (H)||Round of 32||Real Sociedad||4–0||4–0 (A)[c]||0–0 (H)|
|Dynamo Kyiv||4–0||2–0 (A)||2–0 (H)||Round of 16||Milan||2–1||1–1 (H)||1–0 (A)|
|Dinamo Zagreb||3–1||1–0 (A)||2–1 (H)||Quarter-finals||Granada||4–0||2–0 (A)||2–0 (H)|
|Arsenal||2–1||2–1 (H)||0–0 (A)||Semi-finals||Roma||8–5||6–2 (H)||2–3 (A)|
- ^ Qarabağ played their home match against Villarreal in Istanbul, Turkey as UEFA matches in Armenia and Azerbaijan were temporarily suspended due to the 2020 Nagorno-Karabakh war.
- ^ The Villarreal v Qarabağ match was cancelled and awarded as a 3–0 win to Villarreal after several players of the Qarabağ squad tested positive for SARS-CoV-2.
- ^ The first leg away of Manchester United's round of 32 tie against Real Sociedad was played in Turin, Italy due to travel restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic from the United Kingdom to Spain.
On 12 May 2021, UEFA named Frenchman Clément Turpin as the referee for the final. Turpin had been a FIFA referee since 2010, and was previously the fourth official in the 2018 UEFA Champions League Final. He officiated six matches in the 2020–21 Champions League season, and one leg in the 2020–21 Europa League round of 32. He served as a referee at UEFA Euro 2016 in France and the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia, and was selected as an official for UEFA Euro 2020. Turpin also was a video assistant referee at the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup in Russia (including in the final), the 2017 FIFA Club World Cup in the United Arab Emirates and the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup in France. He was joined by five of his fellow countrymen, with Nicolas Danos and Cyril Gringore as assistant referees, François Letexier as the video assistant referee, and Jérôme Brisard and Benjamin Pagès as two of the assistant VAR officials. Slavko Vinčić of Slovenia was the fourth official, while Dutchman Pol van Boekel served as the remaining assistant VAR.
Villarreal opened the scoring in the 29th minute with a goal from Gerard Moreno, diverting the ball into the net with his right leg from six yards out after a free-kick from the left side delivered by Dani Parejo. Edinson Cavani equalized in the 55th minute after a shot by Marcus Rashford from 20 yards deflected off of Scott McTominay to Cavani, who scored with a low shot from five yards out. There were no more goals in normal time or in extra time with the match going to a penalty shoot-out. The first ten penalties from both teams were converted, leaving the goalkeepers to take a penalty. Villarreal keeper Gerónimo Rulli converted his penalty, and then saved David de Gea's attempt to his left, winning his side the trophy.
The "home" team (for administrative purposes) was determined by an additional draw to be held after the quarter-final and semi-final draws.
|Villarreal||1–1 (a.e.t.)||Manchester United|
Man of the Match:
- ^ Each team was given only three opportunities to make substitutions, with a fourth opportunity in extra time, excluding substitutions made at half-time, before the start of extra time and at half-time in extra time.
- ^ a b "Étienne Capoue named official UEFA Europa League final man of the match". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 26 May 2021. Retrieved 26 May 2021.
- ^ a b c d e f "Referee teams appointed for UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League finals". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 12 May 2021. Retrieved 12 May 2021.
- ^ a b "Full Time Summary Final – Villarreal v Manchester United" (PDF). UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 26 May 2021. Retrieved 26 May 2021.
- ^ a b c "Tactical Lineups – Final – Wednesday 26 May 2021" (PDF). UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 26 May 2021. Retrieved 26 May 2021.
- ^ a b "UEFA competitions to resume in August". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 17 June 2020. Retrieved 17 June 2020.
- ^ "Villarreal 1-1 Manchester United (aet, 11-10 pens): Spanish side win Europa League in marathon shoot-out". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 26 May 2021. Retrieved 26 May 2021.
- ^ "Champions League and Europa League changes next season". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 27 February 2018. Retrieved 27 February 2018.
- ^ "Istanbul to host 2020 UEFA Champions League Final". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 24 May 2018. Retrieved 2 February 2021.
- ^ "Europa League to resume on 5 August, final on 21 August". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 17 June 2020. Retrieved 2 February 2021.
- ^ a b "2021 UEFA Europa League final: Gdańsk". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. Retrieved 2 February 2021.
- ^ a b "Gdansk to host 2020 UEFA Europa League final". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 24 May 2018. Retrieved 28 September 2019.
- ^ "Six associations interested in hosting 2020 club finals". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 3 November 2017.
- ^ "Seville to host 2021 UEFA Europa League final". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 24 September 2019. Retrieved 28 September 2019.
- ^ "UEFA Super Cup - 2021 season" (Press Kit). Union des Associations Européennes de Football. 11 August 2021.
- ^ Tejedor Carnicero, José Vicente (22 April 2021). "Spain – List of Cup Finals". RSSSF. Retrieved 6 May 2021.
- ^ Torre, Raúl (29 January 2009). "Spain – List of League Cup Finals". RSSSF. Retrieved 6 May 2021.
- ^ Tejedor Carnicero, José Vicente; Torre, Raúl; Lozano Ferrer, Carles (28 January 2021). "Spain – List of Super Cup Finals". RSSSF. Retrieved 6 May 2021.
- ^ "2021 UEFA Europa League Final" (PDF) (Press Kit). Union des Associations Européennes de Football. 26 May 2021. Retrieved 26 May 2021.
- ^ Stone, Simon (6 May 2021). "Roma 3-2 Man Utd (5-8 on aggregate): Solskjaer's side through to Europa League final". BBC Sport. Retrieved 6 May 2021.
- ^ "Villarreal CF » Record against Manchester United". WorldFootball.net. Retrieved 6 May 2021.
- ^ "Manchester United football club: record v Villarreal". 11v11.com. Retrieved 6 May 2021.
- ^ "Temporary suspension of UEFA matches in Armenia and Azerbaijan". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 20 October 2020.
- ^ "CEDB: Villarreal CF v Qarabağ FK". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 18 December 2020. Retrieved 18 December 2020.
- ^ "UEFA Europa League venue changes". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 12 February 2021. Retrieved 12 February 2021.
- ^ "Villarreal beat Manchester United 11-10 on penalties to win Europa League final". Guardian. 26 May 2021. Retrieved 27 May 2021.
- ^ Stone, Simon (26 May 2021). "Villarreal 1–1 Manchester United (11–10 on pens): David de Gea spot kick saved in epic Europa League final shootout". BBC Sport. Retrieved 26 May 2021.
- ^ "Regulations of the UEFA Europa League, 2020/21". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 3 August 2020.
- ^ "Two triple-headers approved for 2021 March and September national team windows". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 24 September 2020. Retrieved 24 September 2020.
- ^ a b c d "Team statistics" (PDF). UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 26 May 2021. Retrieved 28 May 2021.