The opening exchanges proved almost as lively. Tom Cleverley and Yilmaz both stung palms with efforts from outside the area before Danny Welbeck’s cross almost caused Felipe Melo embarrassment. Semih Kaya was booked for a two-footed lunge on Alexander Büttner and Hamit Altintop took a blow to the ribs to round off an action-packed first 10 minutes.
Yilmaz was then guilty of spurning two headed opportunities as Galatasarary began to stamp their authority on the match. The first he miscued, the second he headed over; both attempts were made under little or no defensive pressure.
Still, in the powder-keg atmosphere, Sir Alex’s side just about held their own, played neat passing triangles when in possession and did well to keep cool under an ever-growing list of robust challenges.
A spell of frantic defending ensued when Lindegaard spilled Altintop’s drive. In the next phase of play Galatasaray were convinced they should have had a penalty when the ball struck Büttner’s arm. Welbeck then raced down the other end and won a corner, from which Phil Jones was inches away from nodding in at the far post.
Nick Powell, in his first Champions League fixture, went even closer when he thundered a header off the crossbar on 43 minutes. And there was still time for the home side to threaten before referee Carlos Velasco Carballo brought a brilliant half to a close.
Lindegaard was twice called into action early in the second period. He held well from former Liverpool and Manchester City left-back Albert Riera’s volley and then spectacularly turned over Felipe Melo’s bullet header from 10 yards.