Barça and Leipzig draw in Europa League, Rome loses in Conference

AFP / Paris, France

Barcelona and RB Leipzig could not get past two 1-1 draws against Eintracht Frankfurt and Atalanta, this Thursday in the first leg of the Europa League quarterfinals, while Roma got complicated in that round of the Conference League, by lose 2-1 to Norwegian side Bodo/Glimt.

Barça, the great favorite for the title in the Europa League, the second European tournament, tied again in the first leg of this competition. They already equalized in the first leg of the playoff access to the round of 16 against Napoli and in the first leg of the round of 16 against Galatasaray, to then win the return leg as a visitor and take the pass to the next phase.

This time Barça’s draw was away from home, against a very combative Eintracht.

Ansgar Knauff put Eintracht ahead (48), but Ferran Torres equalized the score (66), in a game that Eintracht finished with ten due to the expulsion of the Brazilian Tuta for a double warning (78).

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“We have known how to get the game ahead and we have drawn a draw that could be valuable for the second leg”, celebrated Ferran Torres.

Barça, who cut a streak of four consecutive victories, will play for the semi-finals next week at the Camp Nou, supported by their fans.

Muriel gives Atalanta hope

In the other star tie of this round, RB Leipzig and Atalanta also drew 1-1 in Germany.

The Italians, currently seventh in Serie A and who eliminated another German club, Bayer Leverkusen, in the previous round (victories 3-2 in Italy and 1-0 in Germany), opened the scoring through their Colombian attacker Luis Muriel , with a splendid shot with effect (minute 17).

Leipzig, fourth in their league and who did not have to play in the last 16 of this competition since their rival was Spartak Moscow (excluded after the Russian invasion of Ukraine), equalized thanks to a goal against Davide Zappacosta, who was fighting for the ball with the Hungarian defender Willi Orban, before a cross from the Spanish Angeliño (58, 1-1).

A minute earlier, Leipzig had missed a penalty, called for a foul by Turkish Merih Demiral on Christopher Nkunku. Portuguese Andre Silva’s shot was deflected by Juan Musso, Atalanta’s Argentine goalkeeper (58).

Lyon’s visit to West Ham also ended with a 1-1 draw, despite the fact that the English played outnumbered throughout the second half.

The ‘Hammers’, sixth in the Premier League, had managed to open the scoring through Jarrod Bowen (52), when they were already playing with ten men after the expulsion of Aaron Cresswell for a foul on Moussa Dembélé, in the discount of the first half (45+3).

Lyon were able to equalize in the 66th minute through Tanguy Ndombélé, who deceived Alphonse Areola from close range, after a cross from the Brazilian Tetê, recently signed by the French and who had entered the game two minutes earlier.

The only match of the first leg of the Europa League quarterfinals where there was a team that went ahead was the one played in Portugal, where Sporting de Braga beat Glasgow Rangers 1-0, with a goal from the Spanish Abel Ruiz in the 40th minute.

Bodo/Glimt reoffend

In the Conference League, the third European tournament, the first legs of the quarterfinals were also played.

The surprise came in Norway with Roma’s 2-1 setback against Bodo/Glimt, who had already beaten the same team 6-1 in the group stage of the tournament.

This time the setback was less forceful and the team from the Italian capital hopes to come back in the Olympic.

In the rest of the matches, Marseille took a 2-1 lead against PAOK Thessaloniki, while the other two duels ended in draws, Feyenoord-Slavia Prague (3-3) and Leicester-PSV Eindhoven (0-0), leaving everything open for return next week.

“I am disappointed because the advantage is short. We could practically have qualified today, taking into account the difference in level shown by the two teams,” said Marseille’s Argentine coach, Jorge Sampaoli.

strawberry /dr