Thursday, 18 February 2010

[UEL] Juve ahead, Roma behind after first legs

Juventus came from behind to secure a 2-1 first-leg lead against Ajax in the last 32 of the UEFA Europa League, but Roma let slip their own 2-1 advantage to lose 3-2 at Panathinaikos.

Ajax 1-2 Juventus
Juventus took a significant stride towards the Europa League last 16 as headed goals either side of half-time from Amauri earned a comeback win at Ajax. Juve scored only once in their three Champions League away games before Christmas and made the worst possible start as Miralem Sulejmani raced clear to shoot Ajax ahead early on. Led by the inspirational Alessandro Del Piero, the visitors levelled before the interval thanks to Amauri's unstoppable header. The Brazilian striker then turned the tie on its head with a second just before the hour ahead of the return match in Turin on February 25, although Juve's night ended on a sour note when substitute Hasan Salihamidzic was sent off in added time for a high challenge.

Panathinaikos 3-2 Roma
Panathinaikos sealed an impressive late victory in the first leg of their Europa League tie in Athens as they twice came from behind to defeat Roma in a pulsating match, ending the Giallorossi's 20-game unbeaten run. Mirko Vucinic put Claudia Ranieri's men ahead in the first half with a superbly curled effort, but Dimitris Salpingidis came off the bench to level via a close-range effort after 67 minutes. David Pizarro's penalty then restored Roma's lead nine minutes from time, only for another Panathinaikos substitute, Lazaros Hristodoulopoulos, to hook in the equaliser three minutes later before Djibril Cisse headed home the winner in the 89th minute. Despite the defeat, Roma will be confident of turning the tie around in the return in Rome on February 25.

UEFA Europa League 2009-10
Round of 32, First Leg
Tuesday 16 February
Everton 2-1 Sporting Lisbon
Thursday 18 February
Rubin Kazan 3-0 Hapoel Tel-Aviv
Ajax 1-2 Juventus
Club Brugge 1-0 Valencia
Lille 2-1 Fenerbahce
Standard Liege 3-2 Salzburg
Twente 1-0 Werder Bremen
Villarreal 2-2 Wolfsburg
Athletic Bilbao 1-1 Anderlecht
Atletico Madrid 1-1 Galatasaray
Copenhagen 1-3 Marseille
Fulham 2-1 Shakhtar Donetsk
Hamburg 1-0 PSV Eindhoven
Hertha Berlin 1-1 Benfica
Liverpool 1-0 Unirea Urziceni
Panathinaikos 3-2 Roma

Source: UEFA

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