Manchester United eased into the quarterfinals of the Champions League on Wednesday, a 4-0 win at Old Trafford giving them a 7-2 aggregate victory.
As in the first leg, Wayne Rooney was the key presence, scoring United’s first two goals, before Park Ji-Sung and Darren Fletcher added further goals.
AC Milan, although they had long spells of possession, were made to look pedestrian, and there was almost a sense of anti-climax about the ease of United’s victory.
Milan midfielder David Beckham, whose return to Old Trafford after seven years was such a feature of the build-up, was left on the bench and arrived after 64 minutes, by which time his team was already out of the tie.
The early minutes brought Milan some hope, but it was soon extinguished.
Ronaldinho headed just wide after six minutes as Andrea Pirlo’s cross glanced off Nani, wrong-footing United’s defence.
Tiago Silva then picked out an unmarked Klaas-Jan Huntelaar at the back post, only for the Dutch forward’s touch to let him down.
Gary Neville was included primarily to close down Ronaldinho, but he showed his attacking capacity as well.
He sent an early shot dipping just over, and then it was from his cross that Rooney headed United into a 13th-minute lead — his sixth headed goal in a row.
Milan’s belief almost visibly drained from them at that and the game rather drifted to half-time, with the away side dominating possession and United comfortably holding them.
Darren Fletcher almost extended their lead just before the break with a 25-yard drive that flew just wide.
Clarence Seedorf, who scored Milan’s second in the first leg, came on for Daniele Borero off at half-time, but within a minute United had gone two up.
Nani, this time, was the creator, jabbing a pass infield for Rooney, who clipped a calm finish past Christian Abbiati, his 30th goal of the season. Park slid in the third from a cleverly disguised ball from Paul Scholes just before the hour.
Beckham arrived four minutes later, and sent one ferocious volley straight at Edwin van der Sar, but by then the game had the feel of an exhibition. Fletcher headed in a Rafael cross to complete the scoring in the 88th minute.