Manchester United 5 FC Midtjylland 1 (agg: 6-3)
In a week that will define how United's season will shape up, it was imperative that after getting through to the FA Cup quarterfinals they overcame their opponents from Denmark. And they did so with van Gaal's special brand of 'horny' football that had everybody excited in the second half.
After the shock defeat last week in the first leg there were many wrongs to put right including a home performance that could at least put a marker down for the remainder of the teams left in the Europa League that United were taking the competition seriously.
With the treatment room at Carrington full to the rafters it was a mixed bag of news for van Gaal in the run-up to the match. The return to training of Rojo and Valencia with the former on the bench for this match. But it was a game too soon for De Gea who will hopefully be fit for when United host Arsenal on Sunday in the critical Premier League game.
The starting team that van Gaal originally put out was: Romero, Varela, Carrick, Blind, Riley, Schneiderlin, Mata, Herrera, Lingard, Memphis and Martial.
Carrick started at center back in place of Smalling in a role that he has filled in before, so it shouldn't be a huge upheaval at the back.
The home side as expected enjoyed the majority of the play in the opening minutes with Rashford and Riley looking sharp on their first starts for the Reds.
The Danish visitors clearly came with a frustrating game plan as most clubs do when they come to Old Trafford and that was to sit everybody behind the ball when United attacked.
Memphis seemed to enjoy himself on the left and on one run beat a number of defenders to open up a chance but the end result came to nothing.
Then in the 27th minute and totally against the run of play with practically their first clear chance on goal Midtjylland scored. And it was a goal by Sisto, who waltzed through the United defence and placed a shot to the right of Romero.
Schneiderlin tried the acrobatics with an overhead kick which was only just wide. Memphis was on fire as he was at the head of every United move and certainly looked on top of his game. His confidence was there for all to see as he tried to beat the keeper from thirty yards as the ball flew just wide.
As the clearance came back towards the visitors penalty area Memphis flicked the ball onto Herrera and as the midfielder entered the box he was tripped to earn United a penalty.
Mata took the huge responsibility and placed the ball towards the bottom corner. But Anderson dived well to turn the ball out for a corner. It was a great save by the keeper who read Mata's intention well. This means that the Spaniard will be taken off spot kick duties for sure.
Half-time and all square at 1-1 in a half that United totally controlled and was unlucky not to be ahead after all the possession they enjoyed. In the end, they shot themselves in the foot with a lack of quality in defending by Blind and Carrick for the visitor's opener by showing a lack of commitment to make a challenge on Sisto as he danced across the area.
On a positive note it was all about Memphis as he tortured the Midtjylland defenders and was at the heart everything United produced, including an assist for the own goal and the pass for the penalty.
Herrera had the next chance as he ran onto a far post cross from Memphis, but the midfielder seemed to change his mind about shooting and elected to head the ball which went just wide.
It was all United as they went in search of their second goal at the same time having to keep an eye on the counter from the visitors especially with their half-time substitute and scorer from the first match 2.01m Onuachu.
Just before the hour mark, the atmosphere in the ground went a bit flat as United took their foot off the pedal and the visitors enjoyed more of the ball.
Lingard seemed to have won a penalty for his side and as the crowd cheered the referee decided wrongly, that the forward had dived and booked him for simulation. A decision that could have had a huge bearing on the outcome of this match as United were still in search of the goal that would see them through. Also, it means that Lingard will be suspended for the next match in the competition.
Memphis continued to conjure up chances from the left and you got the feeling that if any player was going to create something it was him.
Following the goal, it was a welcome return to play for fans favourite Marcos Rojo who came on for Joe Riley, who certainly played his part in his first start for United. Lingard was also withdrawn by van Gaal and replaced by Pereira.
Midtjylland would see out the last few minutes of the match with ten men when Romer received his marching orders after a torrid night up against Memphis.
Then at last after all of his hard work Memphis got his just reward by netting United's fifth goal of the night with a cut in from the left and a shot that gave the keeper no chance. A deserved goal for the man of the match.
Final score 5-1 and 6-3 on aggregate saw United successfully through to the next round after a second-half display that was more like United of old as the Stretford End hailed a new hero in the shape of youngster Rashford who scored a double.
Not bad for a player who thought he would be stuck on the bench proving that dreams do come true and he took the opportunity that was presented to him with the confidence of a quality forward.
After all his troubles this season it was pleasing to finally see Memphis perform to the level that everyone knows he can play at. The extra training sessions with Giggs are clearly paying off.
Thanks for reading.