Omonia Nicosia backup goalkeeper Francis Uzoho took all the credit as the Cypriot side managed to keep Manchester United at bay.
United faced Nicosia in the Europa League, with Erik ten Hag fielding a largely full-strength side against opposition they would have expected to beat easily.
The hosts were dominant for most of the half but could not find a way past Uzoho, who was playing just his third club game of the season.
The Nigerian goalkeeper was in commanding form and his save to keep out Casemiro’s effort, which would have been the midfielder’s first for the club, was the highlight of the first-half performance.
If in doubt just hit it!!
Omonia goalkeeper Uzoho makes an incredible finger save to deny Casemiro to give Manchester United the lead before half-time… 🧤#UEL pic.twitter.com/6WAoXU5lkH
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) October 13, 2022
“Prime Buffon, Schmeichel, etc. they became one tonight,” exclaimed one fan, comparing the 23-year-old to some of the best goalkeepers in football history.
“Audition for De Gea’s job,” said another fan, with the Spanish goalkeeper’s potential replacement recently tipped by United fans.
Another added: “Uzoho becomes top Manuel Neuer playing against his boyhood club at Old Trafford. Rashford has tried everything against him – good saves every time from the Nigerian keeper.”
A fourth fan appeared to believe the performance was part of a goalkeeper conspiracy theory against the Premier League side, saying, “Why does every goalkeeper turn into Spider-Man against Manchester United? How is that Uzoho?”
“This whole game was just Rashford’s keeper against Omonia,” said another, referring to Marcus Rashford’s multiple efforts being thwarted by the keeper.
Aside from Casemiro’s save, it was mainly Rashford who was on the wrong end of Uzoho’s incredible performance that kept things goalless at half-time.
It wouldn’t make things any easier for United fans to learn that the Nigeria international goalkeeper is actually a fan of the Premier League side.
United completely dominated the first half, with 15 shots on target, holding the ball for 79% of the game and combining for a mammoth 381 passes.
However, despite this, the visitors could have taken the lead and United might also have been reduced to 10 men, both of which would have had interesting twists.
In the 42nd minute, Bruno Felipe should have fed the ball to Andronikos Kakoullis for a mock strike, but he decided to shoot and missed.
Also late in the first half, Lisandro Martinez may have been lucky to get away with a spark on a Nicosia forward running to David de Gea, who managed to clear the ball away.
Ten Hag’s side won last week in Cyprus to give them their second win in the group, having beaten Serif in week two, but also lost to Real Sociedad in week one.
They will be desperate to top the group to avoid one of the teams dropping into the Europa League from the Champions League, which could be Juventus or Barcelona.