The Europa League’s Round of 32 is over and the results are in with some unexpected teams making it through to the next round.
Another European night, a lot of thrillers to report. As we have grown to expect, there were a lot of unforeseen results this Thursday. Starting with the afternoon fixtures, there were two surprise results where the underdogs pulled through.
Napoli vs Granada
The Spanish team had pulled off a great result at home against Gattuso’s side with a 2-0 win. However, Napoli were expected to turn things around in the return leg. Although the Italian side started off in the best way possible with a goal from Zielinksi in the third minute, Granada quickly spoiled the party. Veteran midfielder Montoro scored a terrific header and kissed the badge while celebrating. Napoli managed to shorten the lead with Fabian Ruiz’s first goal of the season. However, it wasn’t enough to make it through.
Hoffenheim vs Molde
Coming from one of the best leagues in the world, Hoffenheim were the most likely side to win this qualifier. After a 3-3 thrilling match in Spain, the German team had an away goal advantage and only needed a tie to make it through. However, the Norwegians showed why they were a force to be reckoned with and managed to put two goals past Baumann. In fact, it is the first time Molde have made it this far in the Europa League.
The afternoon games were a great appetizer for what was coming next. This Thursday night’s fixtures brought us higher profile losses from some of the favorites to win the competition.
Bayer Leverkusen vs Young Boys
These squads starred in the most thrilling game of the first leg which ended with a 4-3 win for the Swiss team. Although it was clear Leverkusen was going to struggle to beat their opponents, they were appointed as the clear winners. However, the Bundesliga side didn’t stand a chance against this Young Boys team. Despite having little ball possession, the Swiss champions managed to put two past Lomb and flew into the Round of 16.
Leicester vs Slavia Prague
This was undoubtedly the biggest surprise of the Europa League night. Although Leicester had been unable to score against the Czech champions in the first leg, Brendan Rodgers’ team was tipped to make it through without breaking a sweat. However, it was a terrible night for the team who currently sit in the top three of the Premier League. Leicester weren’t able to score a single goal against Slavia Prague and Schmeichel had to grab the ball from his net twice.