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In the quarter-final first leg of the Europa League, AS Rome overthrew Ajax Amsterdam (1-2) on Thursday, while Manchester United relied on Marcus Rashford and Bruno Fernandes to easily dominate Granada (0-2) . In Zagreb, Gerard Moreno scored the only goal in Villarreal’s victory at Dinamo.

Manchester United, AS Roma and Villarreal, by winning all three away on Thursday, April 8, in the first leg of the quarter-finals of the Europa League, took an option on qualifying for the semi-finals.

Arsenal for its part, who had done the hardest by finally finding the opening in the 86e minute by the former Lille native Nicolas Pépé, may have regrets, with the equalizer of Slavia Prague in added time (1-1).

The Mancuniens of Paul Pogba, winners of the event in 2017, went to win among the Spaniards of Granada (2-0) thanks to the achievements of Marcus Rashford (31e) and the Portuguese Bruno Fernandes who converted a penalty (90e).

At the half hour mark, Rashford made perfect use of a long opening from Swedish defender Victor Lindelöf. The 23-year-old international striker’s goal came just after a dangerous situation in favor of the Andalusians, who are playing their first quarter-final of a European competition for their very first appearance.

The partners of the former Lyonnais Maxime Gonalons then found the post at the 41e minute on a volley from the Venezuelan Yangel Herrera. Rashford then gave way to Edinson Cavani (65e) and the Mancuniens benefited at the very end of the game from a converted penalty for a score (2-0) which allows them to approach the return match next Thursday in a comfortable situation.

Roma in a strong position

Just like the Romans, who obtained a victory slightly against the course of the game on the lawn of Ajax Amsterdam. They had however conceded the first goal on a realization of Davy Klaassen (39e, 1-0). Then shortly after the resumption, everything changed: Tadic missed a penalty for the Dutch (53e) and four minutes later, Lorenzo Pellegrini equalized taking advantage of an error by goalkeeper Scherpen (1-1, 57e). AS Roma took the advantage by Roger Ibanez, up close (2-1, 87e), on a volley after a chest check.

The Spaniards of Villarreal won on the lawn of Dinamo Zagreb thanks to a single goal before the break from Gerard Moreno, on a penalty awarded for a hand from French defender and former Stéphanois Kevin Théophile-Catherine (1-0, 44e).

Arsenal surprised by Slavia Prague

In Prague, the Arsenal Gunners, finalists in 2019, have long sought the opening. They found it after the exit of the ex-Lyonnais Alexandre Lacazette replaced in tip by Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

Pépé gave a short-lived advantage to his family on a pass from the former Stéphanois (1-0, 86e) before the equalizer at the end of extra time in Prague, on a header from Tomas Holes, helped by the not firm enough hands of Bernard Leno (1-1, 90e+4).

With AFP