Lazio in pole position

A review of Thursday night's Europa League last-16 first-leg action not involving English sides, including a win for Lazio.

Last Updated: 07/03/13 at 22:34 Post Comment

Lazio celebrate Ogenyi Onazi's goal

Lazio celebrate Ogenyi Onazi's goal

A review of Thursday night's Europa League last-16 first-leg action not involving English sides, including victories for Lazio and Fenerbahce.

Lazio put one foot in the quarter-finals of the Europa League with a confident display to beat Stuttgart 2-0 on their own turf.

Stuttgart knew they needed a result at home to have much hope, given the Italians' imposing home form, but barely created a clear opening in slumping to defeat.

Goals in either half from Honorato Ederson and Ogenyi Onazi sealed the win for Lazio, who will now take a commanding advantage back to the Stadio Olimipico where they are unbeaten in 10 European outings.

Benfica will head to the Stade Chaban-Delmas with a one-goal lead after a hard-fought 1-0 Europa League last-16 first leg win over Bordeaux.

An unfortunate own goal from goalkeeper Cedric Carasso was the difference between the sides on Thursday night, as both sides struggled to create opportunities at the Estadio da Luz

Fenerbahce are in a strong position heading into their second leg after an impressive 1-0 victory at Viktoria Plzen.

The Czechs failed to hit their stride and Pierre Webo's late strike was deserved punishment for the home side's lack of attacking intent.

Basle's strong home form in Europe stood up to Russian champions Zenit St Petersburg as two late goals gave them a 2-0 advantage in their Europa League last-16 clash.

Marcelo Diaz scored in the 82nd minute after both sides had wasted a string of chances, and substitute Alexander Frei scored from the penalty spot deep in stoppage time after Luis Neto had seen red for a foul on Mohamed Salah.

It extends Basle's unbeaten home run in the competition to five matches, dating back to their second group game, while extending a poor run for Zenit which has seen them win only one away match in Europe in 11 attempts.

Both sides had a man sent off but neither Levante nor Rubin Kazan could find the net in a Europa League 0-0 last-16 stalemate.

The Spanish side were marginally the better side in the first half and had a chance to take control ahead of the second leg when Rubin's Cristian Ansaldi was given a second yellow card in the 53rd minute.

But they threw away the advantage almost immediately, losing Michel to a straight red card just moments later.

The extra space was not enough to bring a goal, leaving everything to play for when hostilities resume in Russia.


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Readers' Comments

I

worry about these types of conclusions on a teams brilliance when it was very clear that Argentina had 4 chances where they really should have scored and on chances alone then it would have been the more pragmatic Argentinians who would be the best in the world. I like the Germany team but this just shows that even with planning it relies on a great deal of luck and finding your opponents at just the right time.

dryice
Reward At Last For Years Of Careful Planning

W

e all know the British public don't have the patience to plan for 14 years. No chance. As soon as our young players don't win the world cup they get harrassed and abused to the point of mental breakdown. No, England likes to react to failure by sacking the manager and tearing up their best laid plans in favour of something shiny and new to keep the knee jerkers happy.

HarryBoulton
Reward At Last For Years Of Careful Planning

G

lad Messi was player of the tournament, there was no-one more deserving. Except Robben. And James Rodriguez. Or Muller and half the Germany team etc etc

sailingmagpie
Golden Ball award for Messi

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