Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk vs. Basel 1893
Basel went into the second leg of this game with quite a bit of confidence as they had earned a significant lead in the first. However, with the chance of Dnipro getting even one away goal, Basel remained focused for the entire game. Penalties basically decided this game although both teams had shown significant strength against each other. Dnipro were under more pressure to get two goals back, and even more under home support, but Basel were determined to make it very difficult for them. The visitors had almost no attempts and were the underdogs for this second leg, but they were strong defensively and that’s all that seemed to matter. Both teams were tied all the way to the end. Deniz Aytekin’s decisions could have indeed been what separated the two teams! With both teams reduced to 10 men, it was up to Schar to score from the penalty spot to prevent the game from going to extra time. And he did!
A spot in the round of 16 was sealed for Basel.
Both teams were issued 3 yellow cards and 1 red card each. Kalinic (Dnipro) and F. Frei (Basel) were, in that order, the only players to be sent off during this match.
Juande Ramos and Murat Yakin lined up the following squads:
Dnipro Starting XI:
Lastuvka, Mandziuk, Strinic, Giuliano, Cheberyachko, Rotan (c), Matheus, Fedetskiy, Zozulya, Seleznyov, Douglas
Subs:Shelikhov, Kankava, Kulakov, Oliynyk, Kalinic, Konoplyanka, and Kravchenko
Basel Starting XI:
Sommer, Park Joo Ho, Dragovic, Schar, Steinhofer, Serey Die, Stocker (c), Cabral, Salah, D. Degen
Subs: Vailati, Voser, Sauro, Yapi, Diaz, El Nenny, and Zoua
Final Score: Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk 1-1 Basel* (Agg: 1-3)
Seleznyov 76′ (pen), Schar 81′ (pen)
Round of 16:
Having eliminated Dnipro, Basel will face Zenit in the round of 16. They will play the first leg of this match at home and the second leg away.
Chelsea vs. AC Sparta Praha
The Champions of Europa went into the second leg of this game with a slight advantage from an away goal scored in Prague from the first half. But having one goal wasn’t enough because Sparta were hungry for goals as well! In their own way too, Sparta had an upper hand, because if they would score at least 2 away goals, Chelsea would have a mountain to climb. The visitors upped their game when they visited Stamford bridge and it was evident that they weren’t looking to park the bus! Although the home side dominated throughout almost the whole game, Sparta were the first to score as early as he 17th minute and level things (on aggregate) so that they would escape the away-goal trap. Overall, however, Chelsea were the stronger team and it seemed that a response to Sparta would be coming,even though we had to wait until the final minute to see it. Chelsea got their winner and avoided going to extra time thanks to a spectacular goal by their only substitute on the night, Eden Hazard.
Chelsea had more attempts and better chances including one against the woodwork, but their lack of a good finisher (with Ba cup-tied and Torres unlucky), Sparta’s defense prevented them from getting a good final touch and capitalizing on their chances. 6 yellow cards were issued on the night, Sparta receiving 4 more than their hosts. No players were sent off during this match.
Rafael Benitez and Vitezslav Lavicka lined up the following squads:
Chelsea Startng XI:
Cech, Cahill, Terry (c), Azpilicueta, Bertrand, Ramires, Mikel, Oscar, Torres, Mata, Moses
Subs: Turnbull, Cole, David Luiz, Ferreira, Marin, Benayoun, and Hazard
Sparta Praha Starting XI:
Vaclik, Svejdik, Hybs, Zapotocny, Matejovsky (c), Krejci, Holek, Vacha, Prikryl, Lafatam Kadlec
Subs: Cech, Pamic, Vidlicka, Polom, Janos, Kweuke, and Bednar
Final Score: Chelsea* 1-1 AC Sparta Praha (Agg: 2-1)
Hazard 90’+2; Lafata 17′
Round of 16:
Having eliminated Sparta Praha, Chelsea will face Steaua in the round of 16. They will play the first leg of this game away and the second leg at home.
Written by Ange Marline