Liverpool held Borussia Dortmund to a 1-1 score line in Germany in their UEFA Europa League quarter final first leg tie ON Thursday, while there were away wins for defending Champions Sevilla -eyeing a third straight triumph in the competition and 2009 winners Shakhtar Donetsk.
Borussia Dortmund 1-1 Liverpool
Liverpool will take a precious away goal back to Anfield after an entertaining 1-1 draw with Borussia Dortmund on Jürgen Klopp’s return to his former club in the first leg of the sides’ UEFA Europa League quarter-final.
Divock Origi gave Liverpool the lead potentially crucial away goal in their Europa League quarter-final tie with Borussia Dortmund as the first leg in Germany ended in a draw.
Belgium striker Divock Origi struck for the Reds with a low finish across goal. Dortmund goalkeeper Roman Weidenfeller then denied Origi one-on-one.
Mats Hummels headed in an equaliser and the hosts pressed in search of a winner, but Liverpool kept them at bay to take home an away goal advantage.
Athletic Bilbao 1-2 Sevilla
Sevilla began the stronger in Bilbao, Kevin Gameiro and Éver Banega carving out early chances before Los Leones roared briefly, Iñaki Williams denied one-on-one by David Soria. Back came the holders, though, and Vitolo was cleverly sent clear by Michael Krohn-Dehli only for his effort to be smothered by Iago Herrerín.
A goal up through the competition’s top marksman Aritz Aduriz and looking good, Athletic were pegged back by Timothée Kolodziejczak before substitute Vicente Iborra clinched a UEFA Europa League quarter-final win for the visitors.
The victory means Sevilla remain on course for an unprecedented third straight UEFA Cup/UEFA Europa League triumph.
Villarreal 2-1 Sparta
Cédric Bakambu struck twice, but an away goal and a succession of missed chances will leave the La Liga top four contenders feeling short-changed.
Inside three minutes, Bakambu was rewarded for chasing down David Bičík when the goalkeeper’s attempted clearance cannoned back into the net off the striker’s outstretched leg before Jakub Brabec held his ground to head Bořek Dočkal’s corner past Sergio Asenjo in first-half added time for 1-1. It was the first goal Villarreal had conceded at home in this UEFA Europa League campaign.
Marcelino’s team were queuing up to miss chances thereafter, Samuel Castillejo, Roberto Soldado and Bakambu all passing up more than one, as Bičík redeemed himself with a string of saves.
The French-born DR Congo ace made it 2-1 three minutes after the hour mark to hand the Yellow Submarines a one goal cushion ahead of the return leg. The visitors have exceeded all expectations to get this far, but this tie should have been all over by half-time given the number of chances Villarreal squandered.
Braga 1-2 Shakhtar
Rakitskiy and Ferreyra scored in both halves for Shakhtar before an 89th-minute header from Wilson Eduardo gave Portuguese side Braga a lifeline ahead of next week’s trip to Ukraine.
Braga were made to rue a series of missed chances as Shakhtar Donetsk gave their hosts a finishing lesson in northern Portugal.
The Ukrainian team spent much of this quarter-final first leg on the back foot but Braga could not capitalise and a sucker-punch in each half leaves their UEFA Europa League ambitions on a knife-edge. There was hope at the last, though, as substitute Wilson Eduardo’s header gave them a lifeline.