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Home   /   As It Happened: Europa League Play-off Stage – Feyenoord vs AS Roma

Good evening and welcome to live coverage of the opening matches of this season’s Europa League knockout stage. I’m Noah Mitchell and I will be providing extensive coverage of the contest between Feyenoord and Roma in Rotterdam – whilst also keeping you updated on the key events elsewhere on the continent.

Feyenoord make just the one change to the side who beat rivals Sparta Rotterdam at the weekend. Captain Lutsharel Geertruida has failed to recover from his illness and is replaced in the starting 11 by Bart Nieuwkoop.

Meanwhile, Roma hope to bounce back after defeat to Inter Milan on Saturday evening. Consequently, Daniele De Rossi has made numerous changes tonight. This includes a customary Europa League appearance for Mile Svilar in goal – who has kept three clean sheets in the competition so far.

1′ UNDERWAY! All four fixtures have kicked off and we are ready for another thrilling night in the Europa League.

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4′ Vibrant atmosphere here in the Netherlands – the Feyenoord support clearly know they have to make full use of their home advantage. Not much action on the pitch so with both sides easing into the game.

6′ Some fierce tackles flying in from the home side which the referee has pulled up on. The latest from Yankuba Minteh who took out Svilar in goal – the Gambian has recently returned after appearing in all group stage matches at AFCON.


10′ Lorenzo Pellegrini found himself in behind the Feyenoord defence and attempted to take it round Timon Wellenreuther in goal. The ball ricocheted in the box before a shot was acrobatically cleared off the line. The assistant flagged on the far side for an offside – but replays shows that the Italian timed his run perfectly. Roma in the ascendency.

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14′ YELLOW CARD – First booking of the game is awarded to Thomas Beelen after halting Romelu Lukaku on a promising attack. Pellegrini sees his subsequent free-kick hit the wall and out for a corner, which again leads to nothing.

16′ Roma fully on top! Lovely play on the right-hand side leads to a threatening cross into the Feyenoord box. Lukaku – who is the second top scorer in this season’s Europa League – has to do better with his header. He generated enough power but was straight down the throat of Wellenreuther.

21′ Against the run of play, Feyenoord should lead! Igor Paixao with a lovely weaving run glided through the Roma defence but the Brazilian dragged his shot horribly wide.

ELSEWHERE – First goal of the night in the Europa League as Kerem Demibay has opened the scoring for Galatasaray in Istanbul! The German with just his second goal of the season has given them a vital lead against Sparta Prague.

26′ Meanwhile back in Rotterdam, the game is bubbling up very nicely. Svilar has been forced into two routine saves as the Dutch side look to assert their authority. At the other end, Roma break quickly and look to set free Lukaku but the pass to him is intercepted and the attack breaks down.

Crazy scenes in Hamburg as smoke in the stadium sees the referee halt the game between Shakhtar and Marseille momentarily.

FIRST GOAL IN SWITZERLAND! Sporting – who reached the quarter-finals of the competition last season – take the lead. It is the unfortunate Auerele Amenda who has scored an own goal which has given the Portuguese side the lead.

35′ Yellow Card – Minteh, who put in a late challenge on Svilar in the opening minutes, has now been shown the yellow card for an apparent ‘foul’ in the middle of the park. Very harsh on the Gambian but he has to be careful from now.


40′ An incredible strike from Paredes from 25-yards out looks destined for the top corner but Wellenreuther pulls out an astonishing save onto the bar which keep the scores level!

Two quick-fire goals in Switzerland! Viktor Gyokeres had doubled the lead for Sporting via the penalty spot but Young Boys have hit back straight away through a strike from Ugrinic. Game on!


45+1 The smallest man on the pitch has come up with the biggest goal for Feyenoord! A simple ball in from the left-hand is met by the Brazilian who just nods it past Svilar in goal. Awful defending from Roma who left him completely unmarked in the box. Incredible scenes in Rotterdam. 1-0 Feyenoord!

Half-Time – Roma will be kicking themselves after that late goal sees them behind after the first 45. De Rossi has a big half-time team talk ahead of him in order to galvanise his side. Despite the chances wasted by the Italian side, they should have no complaints at the score line so far. Huge 45 coming up!

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Here’s how Feyenoord took the lead on the stroke of half-time.

Elsewhere, it is half-time in the other games across Europe:

Galatasaray 1-0 Sparta Prague

Young Boys 1-2 Sporting CP

Shakhtar 0-0 Marseille

The former Coventry striker has now scored 28 goals in all competitions this season – could we see the Swede make a transfer in the Summer? If so, they will have to fork out almost £100 million for the striker.

46′ Back underway in Rotterdam. Can Feyenoord hold on to their slender advantage ahead of the return leg next week?

Who doesn’t like a Europa night? Two goals already as the games resume for the second half. Firstly, Sparta Prague force an equaliser in Turkey through Angelo Preciado, whilst Sporting regain their 2-goal lead in Switzerland. Surprisingly, Gyokeres doesn’t find himself on the score sheet this time as the centre-back Goncalo Inacio adds a third for the away side.

54′ Roma really pushing in this second half as they go in search for a vital equalising goal. Firstly, Paulo Dybala curls a shot wide of the upright before Lukaku wastes yet another headed chance.

60′ Roma’s wretched away form looks like it might continue tonight. In fact, the Italian side have lost six of their 11 away matches in Serie A this season which was a contributing factor into Jose Mourinho’s sacking last month.

GALA RETAKE THE LEAD! Sparta Prague weren’t level for long. Mertens looks to have claimed the goal but I think it might go down as an own goal from a Sparta defender.

But wait! The Turkish side are now down to 10 as Victor Nelsson receives his marching orders. Chaos in Istanbul.

And a first goal in Hamburg. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang – who is used to a goal in the Europa League has given Marseille the lead against Shakhtar

Meanwhile, back in Turkey, Sparta have made their man advantage count in the blink of an eye as they level against Gala


67′ How many headed chances has the Belgian missed tonight? Well he makes this one count! Another cross from the left and Lukaku loops the ball over the helpless Wellenreuther. He is now level with Joao Pedro at the top of the goalscoring charts. Huge moment in this tie! 1-1 in Rotterdam and all to play for.

The Europa League never fails to deliver, does it? Another goal, this time in Hamburg as the ‘home’ side level the match against Marseille. Mykola Matviyenko strikes back imminently for Shakhtar.

75′ You can’t say that goal hasn’t been coming for Roma. Feyenoord have sat back and allowed repeated pressure to be mounted onto them. How do they react from here? Crucial last 15 coming up in Rotterdam.

Feyenoord make another substitution and it is a huge moment for 17-year-old Givairo Read who comes on for his debut.

82′ After finding that leveller, Roma look to slow the tempo as the game creeps towards its conclusion. Svilar in the Roma goal goes down following a Feyenoord corner much to the disgust of the home fans. Roma will clearly be the happier team if the scores stay level – they will be favourites back in the Italian capital next week.

86′ Yellow Card – How crucial could this moment be in the tie? Edoardo Bove has received a caution which means he will miss the second-leg this time next week.

90′ Svilar with a big save for the visitors. Santiago Gimenez – who has scored 21 in all competitions this season – arrowed a shot on goal but the Roma keeper produced a fine save to keep the scores level


91′ From a free-kick on the right-hand side, Feyenoord almost find a winner after cheeky play from Luka Ivanusec. He tries to catch Svilar out by going for goal but he is denied by the upright. Roma let off the hook. Still 1-1.


Insane drama across Europe! Firstly, former Sheffield United forward Illiman Ndiaye gives Marseille the lead in Hamburg but Shakhtar have hit back instantly. A header from Eguinaldo surely rescures a draw for the Ukrainian side and it’s all to play for next week in France.

If that wasn’t entertaining enough, 10-man Galatasaray have surely grabbed winner as Mauro Icardi scores at the death in Istanbul. Heartbreak for Sparta, who have also been reduced to 10 men.


Wow! What an incredible 90 minutes of action we have witnessed in Europe, including in Rotterdam. It was a tale of two headers in each half as the spoils are shared ahead of next week’s return leg in Rome. Feyenoord failed to make the most of their home advantage and might be disappointed they didn’t press for a second goal earlier in the second leg. This tie is finally poised, let’s hope the game next week has more of the same drama.

Elsewhere there were 13 goals across the other 3 matches tonight. Galatasaray will take a slender lead to Prague after defeating Sparta 3-2. Sporting take a relatively comfortable lead back home after beating Young Boys in Switzerland 3-1. Finally, Marseille were denied victory in Hamburg when Shakhtar levelled in stoppage time to make the score 2-2.

So, the games are finely poised ahead of the return legs next Thursday, all of which will kick-off at the later time of 20:00 GMT. Meanwhile four more Europa League ties are about to get underway, including the clash between AC Milan and Rennes at San Siro. Thank you for reading this live blog, I hope you can join me the same time next week!

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May 2024