Bayern dumps United out of Europe

Arjen Robben capped a surprising comeback Wednesday by scoring with a late volley to send Bayern Munich into the Champions League semifinals on away goals despite a 3-2 loss at 10-man Manchester United.

Robben scored from outside the area in the 74th minute at Old Trafford to make the aggregate score 4-4, giving Germany its first semifinalist since 2002 and leaving England with no teams in the final four for the first time since 2003.

United had led 2-0 after seven minutes from goals by Darron Gibson and Nani. And Nani added another in the 41st minute to make it 3-0 before Ivica Olic pulled one back for Bayern in the 43rd.

"After 3-0 I thought it was going to be a very long evening, but the goal from Olic gave us confidence," Robben said. "They were a lot better in the first half."

United was reduced to 10 men in the 50th when Rafael da Silva was sent off after being shown a second yellow card for tugging at Franck Ribery.

Bayern will play Lyon, which lost 1-0 at Bordeaux in an all-French quarterfinal but advanced on 3-2 aggregate to reach its first Champions League semifinal.

Robben had missed the first leg with a calf injury, but his comeback was overshadowed by Wayne Rooney’s rapid return from damaged ankle ligaments that was meant to rule him out for up to three weeks.

Rooney was instrumental in United taking a two-goal lead, feeding Gibson with his first touch to score in the third minute.

And the England striker was again the instigator four minutes later, releasing Antonio Valencia on the right flank. The Ecuador winger swept past Holger Badstuber before crossing to an unmarked Nani, who coolly backheeled past goalkeeper Hans-Jorg Butt.

There was a scare in the 22nd when Rooney starting limping after appearing to twist his ankle following a challenge by Daniel van Buyten, but he gave a "thumbs-up" signal to the bench and remained on the pitch.

"(It’s) the stopping and starting that’s causing the problems," Ferguson said at halftime of Rooney’s ankle, and complained that the injury was being targeted by Bayern players.

United looked to be cruising into the semifinals for a third successive season when Nani blasted in United’s third of the night.

Valencia knocked Rafael’s throw-in past Martin Demichelis and Rooney let the resulting cross roll past him for Nani to dispatch into the back of the net to give United a 4-2 aggregate lead.

Old Trafford was still celebrating when Bayern stunned United by scoring from only its second attack of real threat.

Thomas Muller headed on a deep cross to Olic, who left Michael Carrick flat-footed before forcing the ball past Van der Sar from a tight angle.

"The first half was not that good," Bayern coach Louis van Gaal said. "What we did in the second half is incredible. We should have been aggressive from the start."

Bayern’s chances of scoring the goal required to take them through were boosted five minutes into the second half when Rafael was shown a second yellow card, having been penalized in the first half for a petulant kick after being fouled by Mark Van Bommel.

"Young boy, inexperience, but they got him sent off," United manager Alex Ferguson said. "They all rushed towards the referee. Typical Germans. You can’t dispute that. The key issues were the goal before halftime and then the boy getting sent off."

And without Rooney – the England striker was replaced in the 55th – Bayern overpowered United before Robben struck the decisive goal.

"With 11 men it wouldn’t have been a problem," Ferguson said.

The victory helped Bayern avenge its defeat in the 1999 final to United, which scored two injury-time goals.