Category Archives: Europa League

Liverpool beats poor-performing United in Europa League

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Liverpool beats poor-performing United in Europa League

Liverpool asserted their dominance in Anfield as they beat a poorly performing Manchester United by 2-0 in their Europa League round-of-16 match.

As both sides meet each other for the first time in a European competition, Liverpool pressed and probed from the start under the floodlights against their longtime rivals.

Daniel Sturridge made the controversial opener from the spot twenty minutes in, after Memphis Depay was penalized for fouling Nathaniel Clyne in the box.

Even if he was playing with a team that seemed to have gave up since the beginning of the game, David De Gea hanged on for Manchester United, making saves after the saves from Liverpool frontmen Sturridge, Philippe Coutinho and Adam Lallana.

Indeed, United seemed to hope that their keeper would carry the team through the whole game as both teams head into the break. Even Jurgen Klopp had felt that his team were “too loose” in the second half.

But with a Michael Carrick mistake, Roberto Firmino tuned in a pass from Lallana to make it two for the host. Anfield was ablaze as red and white scarves swung wildly along with a huge waving banner with the words “European Elite.”

It may be a second-tier European tournament, but the atmosphere – red smoke from flares, the celebration from Liverpool fans at the final whistle and The Kop’s pre-game rendition of You’ll Never Walk Alone –certainly makes the game reminiscent of any game in the Champions League Final.

English clubs through in Europa League

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English clubs through in Europa League

Liverpool, Tottenham and Manchester United are all through to the UEFA Europa League round of 16 as each club secured a victory in their respective match-ups.

Liverpool managed to scrap up a narrow 1-0 win against FC Ausburg, thanks to a James Milner penalty after a Dominik Kohr handball in the box. However, the Reds failed to exploit any further opportunities in the game.

With one away goal enough to help Ausburg pull through, the German side played with stride and fervor although to no avail. Liverpool keeper Simon Mignolet had done well to keep them out, with a late save from an otherwise brilliant Tobias Werner effort.

Meanwhile, Manchester United could all but forget about their awful previous fixture as they made a wild comeback to defeat FC Midtjylland by 5-1.

However, the club appeared to be headed for embarrassment again initially at Old Trafford as they conceded the first goal to Pione Sisto, adding to the Danish side’s 2-1 first leg advantage.

A somewhat incensed crowd calmed somewhat when the host managed to equalized through Nikolay Bodurov’s own goal, but was somewhat troubled as Juan Mata missed his penalty.

Then, 18-year old Marcus Rashford took center stage to replace an injured Anthony Martial, and struck twice to make it 3-1 after the break. Then, Ander Herrera converts a penalty and Memphis Depay thumped one more in to seal Midtjylland’s fate.

Tottenham managed to take down Serie A elites Fiorentina convincingly by 3-0 to underline their credentials as serious contenders even without the help of star striker Harry Kane.

Spurs pulled ahead on home ground as Ryan Mason strode through and side-footed home midway through the first half. Although the Italians came back in force after half-time, Erik Lamela’s close range made it two nil.

Later, an own goal from skipper Gonzalo Rodriguez extinguished any hope of a Viola fightback.

All three English clubs will go into the draw without knowing if they will play each other, given that there are no seedings or restrictions which prevents fixtures between clubs of the same country.

Tottenham and Liverpool through to Europa League last 32

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Tottenham

Erik Lamela scores his first hat-trick in a 4-1 Tottenham win.

Erik Lamela ensured Tottenham stays at the top of Group J and moves on to the knockout stages with a hat-trick.

The Argentine led the English side to a 4-1 win over Monaco without any help from Harry Kane, Dele Alli and Christian Eriksen.

Tottenham would extend their winning streak to a total of nine games, with just 2 defeats in their last 21 matches.

Lamela scored with three past Monaco keeper Danijel Subasic, but the Croatian will feel he was beaten far too easily at his near post.

However, the best goal of the night was a cool finish applied by Carroll after his quick feet had left Elderson wrong-footed.

Nabil Bentaleb and Nacer Chadli continued their recoveries from injury with tidy substitute performances, while 18-year-old Joshua Onomah impressed in his first senior start.

The midfielder combined some probing passing with clever runs and he might have scored, but he opted for precision rather than power from six yards out.

Meanwhile, all was quiet at the Tourbillon Stadium as Sion held down Liverpool to an uneventful goaless draw.

Divock Origi had the best chances for goal, but a mistimed volley in the first half and a fine last-ditch tackle stopped the Belgian.

Meanwhile, Reds keeper Simon Mignolet was forced to make a save to deny Sion’s Ebenezer Assifuah.

Although their unbeaten record in the championship remains intact, Liverpool players were clearly left frustrated, having a lot less to celebrate compared to the jubilant Swiss team.

Klopp

Klopp is satisfied that Liverpool came out of Sion unscathed.

The draw notwithstanding, the spiritual leader of the Reds appeared to be happy enough. Jurgen Klopp was “thrilled” that none of his players was hurt.

The German said: “The ground was very difficult to play and for both teams the first thing to do was show you were prepared for a game like this and that is what my team did.”

“We saw the pitch and we knew what can happen on a pitch like this but as a professional footballer and especially as a manager you cannot talk about the pitch.”

“I am really satisfied, no-one is injured and they were very focused and concentrated on the game.”

Both Sion and Liverpool are through the round of 32, where they may go up against clubs such as Manchester united depending on Monday’s draw.

Klopp's liverpool

Klopp’s Liverpool may be up against Van Gaal’s Man United, depending on Monday’s draw.