The round of 16 concluded today with some very interesting and surprising results. We are now down to the final 8 teams and the quarter final draws will be carried out today at 1730 IST covered by the Ten Sports network. Watch this space as we discuss each match up soon after the draws are declared. Some really strong teams have made it this far and we expect some mouth-watering ties. Let’s round up tonight’s results.
Besiktas : The Turkish giants ran riot in the night at home despite going down to 10 men in the 39th minute. Olympiakos failed to capitalise on their man advantage and with 49% possession and 13 shots, they managed to convert only one of those. Besiktas had a steady supply of goals coming in as they won 5-2 on aggregate comfortably.
Genk : Winning the first leg 5-2, the Belgian side won their derby match against Gent and finished the night 1-1 winning the fixture 6-3 on aggregate. Despite enjoying the bigger share of possession, Gent had to settle for a consolation goal late in the 84th minute. It would’ve required a Barcelona-esqe comeback to overturn a 5-2 deficit and the losing side fell well short of that.
Celta Vigo : Celta have reached the quarter final for the first time since 2000-01 and won comfortably on the night thanks to two away goals in the second half. Russian side Krasdonar only made things difficult for themselves by going down to 10 men in the 86th minute, ruling out any chance of a comeback. The Spanish side winning the tie with a 4-1 aggregate.
Ajax : The Dutch side overturned a first leg defeat to win 2-0 on the night against Kobenhaven and winning the tie 3-2 on aggregate. Enjoying majority of the possession, Ajax were quick turn the deficit in the first half itself scoring in the 23rd minute and converting a late penalty in the first half stoppage time. Ajax reach the final 8 of this competition for the first time since 1998.
Manchester United : Tournament favourites Manchester United had to deal with a difficult opposition and an uncomfortable 90 minutes as Rostov threatened with potency. Juan Mata converted a brilliant counter attack involving Mikhitaryan and Ibrahimovic and was present at the right place at the right time to tap in from close range. However, it was the United stopper Romero who showed up with the good stuff to deny Rostov the chance to take this fixture into extra time. The Argentine brilliantly denied a last minute on-target free kick and the referee concluded the match after that. United won the the 2-1 on aggregate.
Lyon : Italian club Roma were probably the unluckiest of them all and were knocked out despite winning 2-1 on the night. Battling a first half defeat, the Italians were hard done by, despite an own goal turning things in their favour. Lyon were first to score in the 16th minute making it a herculean task for Roma. Ending the tie 4-5, surely Roma must feel disappointed on missing out.
Schalke 04 : Playing away from home, Schalke managed to draw the tie 2-2 on the night grabbing 2 valuable away goals after being 2-0 down in the first half. The draw ended 3-3 with Schalke going through based on the away goals rule. Schalke were quick to respond in the second half with a a bit of fortune in the first goal as the ball took a nasty bobble before nestling into the bottom corner. Borussia M’Gladbach must surely feel they failed to capitalise from an advantageous position.
Anderlecht : The belgian side repeated the scoreline of the first leg and won the tie on a 2-0 aggregate. Frank Acheampong scored the night’s only goal within seconds of coming on from the bench. Nicosia failed to utilise their superior possession and ended their night in disappointment.
So there you have it. The final 8 teams in the europe league and the draws should now give us an idea on how the rest of the tournament will pan out.
image credits : google image search
data collected from uefa.com and Fotmob.