Europa League: Matchday Five
|Inter's younger players were taught a harsh footballing lesson by Rubin Kazan, who confirmed their status as winners of Group H with a 3-0 victory on Thursday (see full report here).
In the battle of the basement boys, nothing could separate Neftchi Baku and Partizan Belgrade, who fought out a 1-1 draw in the Azeri capital.
Flavinho struck an unstoppable drive from 30 yards out inside the first 10 minutes to hand the hosts the lead, but almost an hour later, Sasa Ilic slipped through Aleksandar Markovic for the equaliser. The striker, however, was soon dismissed as the game finished in a stalemate.
|Ironi Kiryat Shmona's match with Athletic Bilbao was postponed due to violence in the host city of Haifa (see full story here).
However, Sparta Prague's 1-1 draw with Olympique Lyonnais on Thursday means the Basques have been eliminated from the competition without kicking a ball.
Yoann Gourcuff's recent upturn in form was highlighted again as he supplied the ball which found Yassine Benzia, and Les Gones starlet's shot cannoned in off the crossbar to give the French side the initiative.
But Sparta were not to be denied of a place in the round of 32. Tomas Prikyl's diagonal pass was slotted in by Josef Husbauer, rendering the outcome of the clash in Israel obsolete.
|Lazio sealed their place in the last 32 of the Europa League thanks to a goalless draw with Tottenham (see full report here).
Panathinaikos's 1-0 victory over Maribor means the fight for second place in Group J will be taken to the last matchday.
Ales Mejac was sent off on the cusp of half-time for a pair of bookable offences to give the Greeks a numerical advantage, while Arghus' foul in the box was penalised.
Vitolo failed to take full advantage of the first spot kick, but the Spanish midfielder was handed a reprieve as he was hacked down by Ales Mertelj later on. This time, he duly converted, sending Jasmin Handanovic the wrong way.
|Rosenborg were denied entry to the round of 32 a fortnight ago but nonetheless starred in a 3-2 success over Rapid Vienna on Thursday.
On 28 minutes, John Chibuike's mazy run ended in the deadlock being broken, but Thomas Schrammel restored parity with a flying effort from the edge of the box shortly after half-time.
Not long after the hour mark, Rapid doubled their lead through Terrence Boyd, who applied the rebound from Harald Pichler's initial shot which was parried away by Alexander Lund Hansen.
However, Tarik Elyounoussi levelled terms with 15 minutes remaining, and Rade Prica mopped up Jonas Svensson's square pass to win the tie for the Norwegians.
Elsewhere, Metalist Kharkiv maintained their unbeaten Europa League campaign with a comprehensive 2-0 win over Bayer Leverkusen, who suffered their first loss in the competition.
Moments after the restart, the Germans conceded their first goal in the group stage following Jonathan Cristaldo's crisp half-volley. And with just five minutes remaining, Cleiton Xavier's deft turn allowed him to finish off an intricate, sweeping move.