United’s history with possible Europa League opponents
Anderlecht were the first European Cup opponents United faced in 1956, when their two-legged tie ended in a 12-0 shellacking. United most recently played Belgium’s most decorated club in the 2000-01 Champions League group stage.
They could also draw St Etienne’s neighbours, Lyon, where they would be reunited with former winger Memphis – but only off the pitch, since the Dutchman is cup tied after playing for United in the Europa League. United played Lyon in the Champions League 2004-05 group stage and overcame them in the last 16 three seasons later.
United could return to Amsterdam, where they most recently beat Daley Blind’s Ajax in their 2012 Europa League knockout win, while there could be a first trip to Rome since the 2009 Champions League final. United played Roma six times in a little over a year, eliminating them in the Champions League quarter-finals in 2007 and 2008, as well as recording a win and a draw in the 2007-08 group stage.
Copenhagen defeated United in the 2006 Champions League group stage, Besiktas became the second Turkish side to win at Old Trafford in 2009 and United thrashed Schalke 6-1 on aggregate in the 2011 Champions League semi-final. Olympiakos were beaten four times within a year at the start of the century in the Champions League group stage.