Three away victories were recorded this Thursday in the UEFA club competition. In the remaining key, Arsenal and Slavia Prague tied.
The scorers Marcus Rashford and Gerard Moreno consolidated the position of favorites to the Europa League of the Manchester United and the Villarreal, winners of their quarterfinal first leg duels in Granada (0-2) and Zagreb (0-1) this Thursday, respectively, while the Roma beat Ajax (1-2).
The other match had no winner. Neither Arsenal nor Slavia Prague, tied at one in their confrontation in London, destined to resolve which of the two will be in the penultimate step of the tournament in the territory of the Czech champions in a final match within a week, when will all be completed with the crashes back.
Gerard Moreno’s moment is impressive. In LaLiga and in the Europa League. There is no better proof than the numbers, as indisputable as those of the Spanish international striker, because he has participated in 20 goals in the last 13 matches of his team between the two competitions: 14 he scored and six gave them.
His was the penalty play that caused the 0-1 in Zagreb, a cross from the left wing that hit Teophile’s outstretched arm, and his was the transformation of the maximum penalty, with the right, with the deception of the opposing goalkeeper , who threw himself to the other side, unable to stop the definition of a major scorer.
The 0-1, achieved at the edge of the interval, has a formidable value for Villarreal, pending to do as good as it seems in the return at La Cerámica, just as the most favorite of all should do it, by squad, history, appearance and Scoreboard: Manchester United, effective and winning 0-2 in Granada.
Red Devils, with foot in the semifinals
Marcus Rashford’s continental course is also impressive. It is true that United was not enough to sustain themselves in the Champions League, but their goals shine in Europe: eight goals in ten games between the competition in which the course started and the one in which it is now, which awakens the ambition of a group seeking to rediscover success.
In this is the English team, victorious 0-2 against Granada, which emerged without fear in a tie and with a rival of such dimension, but whose concession in the 30th minute was fatal, no matter how much merit it had the long ball of Victor Lindelof from his territory and the control and definition of Rashford, who needed three touches to appear in the semifinals, old trafford slope.
In the 65th minute he was changed by Edinson Cavani and Granada sought the tie, but received more punishment: the 0-2 in a penalty from Yan Eteki transformed by Bruno Fernandes. Rui Silva was about to stop him. Both teams regret penalty losses for the second round. United lose Harry Maguire, Scott McTominay and Luke Shaw; the Granada, to Domingos Duarte and Yan Eteki.
Arsenal and Slavie hurt each other equally
In London, Alexandre Lacazette, on the other hand, did not have as much offensive punch. His failure against the rival goal when he had the victory in the second half concentrated the lament of Arsenal against Slavia Prague, first relieved by the appearance of Nicolás Pepe to the rescue with 1-0 in the 87th minute, but then disappointed because the crash ended with Holes’ 1-1 lead in the 94th minute.
If Lacazette had 30 meters to drive, tackle the most complex aspect of football – the definition – and provoke the individual duel with the goalkeeper, resolved with a shot with effect to the squad, perhaps too tight in such a favorable situation, because he crashed it on the vertex, Pepe was in a hurry in the fight with the defender when he hit the ball before the rival goalkeeper left.
It was 1-0. 87th minute. Not even that was enough for Arsenal, because Holes, opportunely, in the second post, in a corner, after a rejection in the heart of the area, never lost faith in a draw that proposes the Czech champion at least with the same options – or more – than his rival for the return in a week on his land.
López relaunches Rome
In Amsterdam, while, in addition to Ibáñez’s volley in the final moments that completed Roma’s comeback with 1-2, the difference was made by two goalkeepers in two key moments, with a few minutes of difference, when the Italian bloc was most committed, with 1-0 against and facing the precipice of 2-0.
Ahead on the scoreboard with Davy Klaasen 1-0 in the 40th minute, Ajax went from the occasion of 2-0, with a poor penalty taken by a notable Dusan Tadic in everything else and repelled by Pau López, to 1-1, when their young goalkeeper, Kjell Scherpen, made a disastrous mistake on a Pellegrini foul.
It was not too disturbing a throw, with the inside of the right foot, to his stick, to his hands really, on a stretched chest of drawers, but he escaped from them to finish inside the goal and put his team on the ropes in the tie. Nothing could do, already in 87, before the whiplash of Ibáñez. The 1-2 for Roma, which is aiming for the semifinals. The return is at your home. (D)