LONDON: Manchester United swept back into the Champions League final as the holders produced a stunning 3-1 win over Arsenal in Tuesday's semi-final second leg.
Sir Alex Ferguson's side arrived at the Emirates Stadium holding only a slender 1-0 lead from last week's first leg, but United scored twice in the first 11 minutes to set up a 4-1 aggregate triumph that booked their place in the final against Chelsea or Barcelona, who meet in their decider Wednesday.
United, who beat Chelsea in last year's final, were given a helping hand from Arsenal as South Korea winger Park Ji-Sung punished an embarrassing slip from Kieran Gibbs to open the scoring.
Cristiano Ronaldo then deceived Manuel Almunia with a long-range free-kick, and the Portuguese striker put the result beyond doubt when he added his second goal after half-time.
Arsenal barely tested United keeper Edwin van der Sar until Robin van Persie converted a late penalty after Darren Fletcher was sent off, ruling him out of the final, for a foul on Cesc Fabregas.
Even that couldn't detract from a fantastic display from United, who are the first defending champions to reach the final since Juventus in 1997.
They were simply outstanding and exposed the flaws in Arsene Wenger's inexperienced, injury-hit team with ruthless efficiency.
No team has retained the trophy in the Champions League era, but United are hitting new heights and, with the Club World Cup and League Cup already won and the Premier League within touching distance, Ferguson and company are close to a memorable quadruple.
Arsenal were fortunate to be trailing by just one goal after a timid display at Old Trafford and the onus was on Wenger's side to make a fast start.