Many games being played all over Europe last night. Three English teams were represented with the spotlight on Tottenham v Inter Milan at White Heart Lane.
Anzhi Makhachkala 0 – 0 Newcastle
Whilst this certainly wasn’t a game for the neutrals, the Magpies will be delighted to return to the Northeast having not conceded a goal against moneybags outfit Anzhi. With players like Eto’o and Willian at their disposal, many were expecting a relatively easy win for the Russian superpower, but Newcastle will be encouraged by their strong display and are certainly still in this tie with things all square after the first leg.
Steaua Bucharest 1 – 0 Chelsea
It was a night to forget for Chelsea as they went down 1 – 0 to a spirited Bucharest side. This game didn’t exactly set the pulses racing, but Chelsea should really have done better, and return to London with no away goal and a one goal deficit following Raul Rusescu’s 34th minute penalty. Rafa Benitez has insisted they can turn it around but the end of the season can’t come quick enough for Chelsea fans.
Tottenham 3 – 0 Inter Milan
Tottenham continued their rich vein of form with an outstanding performance at home to Inter Milan. Now, Internazionale aren’t the force they used to be, but they will nevertheless be thoroughly disappointed with a performance which came close to signaling the end of this season’s European jaunt. Gareth Bale was the man of the moment again, with one goal and an assist for Jan Vertonghen while Gylfi Sigurdsson added the other. Spurs are in fantastic form right now, and many are seeing AVB’s men as likely winners of the entire competition.
Plzen 0 – 1 Fenerbahce
Fenerbahce headed back to Istanbul with a crucial away goal as Pierre Webó struck in the last few minutes of Thursday’s clash. Plzen struggled to get into the game and only had 4 attempts on goal – none of which hit the target. Fenerbahce rained in shots on the Plzen goal and one has to fancy them to complete the job back in Turkey next week.
VfB Stuttgart 0 – 2 Lazio
It was a fairly even game at the Mercedes-Benz Arena and consequently the result will be even more galling for the Germans who now face the prospect of having to overturn a two away goal deficit next week in Rome. Sadly, two Stuttgart mistakes resulted in goals for Ederson and Onazi and Lazio could be forgiven for looking forward to the quarterfinals now.
Benfica 1 – 0 Bordeaux
Both sides proved to be of a similar level at the Estádio da Luz on Thursday night and sadly for Bordeaux it was a slice of misfortune that proved the difference between the two sides, with Bordeaux goalkeeper Carrasso scoring a 21st minute own goal. Nevertheless, this tie is certainly still alive as both sides reconvene in France next week.
FC Basel 2 – 0 Zenit St Petersburg
You’d have been forgiven for thinking that Zenit were favourites going into this one, but Basel bided their time and struck two late goals to make life very difficult for Zenit heading into the second leg. Luís Neto also got himself sent off at St Jakob-Park and the Russians will have to dig deep next week to have a chance of reaching the last 8.
Levante 0 – 0 Rubin Kazan
Levante and Kazan had men sent off within two minutes of each other as both sides battled to a goalless draw. Rubin began to look lively towards the end of the game and will be hoping to continue where they left off back in Russia. Levante on the other hand, will be buoyed by another clean sheet and with all to play for next week, it’s difficult to guess which way this one will go.