GOAL! Espanyol 1-1 Wolves (agg: 1-5, Traore 22)
Adama Traore, back in his birthplace of Barcelona, scores at the second attempt to put Wolves 5-1 ahead on aggregate. They also have an away goal, which means Espanyol need at least five more to go through.
GOAL! Espanyol 1-0 Wolves (agg: 1-4, Calleri 15)
A-hem, as I was saying. Jonathan Calleri gives Espanyol the lead with a crisp finish at the near post from Pedrosa’s low cross.
Espanyol 0-0 Wolves No sign of an imminent nightmare for Wolves. Rui Patricio has just made a terrific save, though yer man was offside.
“I’ll be relying solely on your MBMing skills today as they no longer show Europa League games on TV here and I’m too cheap to pay to watch them,” says J. R. in Illinois. “Ah well. I guess I’ll just continue reading this book explaining why y’all Brexited yourselves even though I don’t think I’ll ever fully understand. Maybe if these games are uneventful and you’re looking for material you could try explaining it to me.”
GOAL! Porto 0-1 Leverkusen (Alario 11)
Leverkusen go 3-1 ahead on aggregate. As in the first leg, Lucas Alario had a goal disallowed for offside on the field and then given by VAR. It was a calm, accomplished finish at the end of a neat move, and Leverkusen are well on course for the last 16.
Espanyol 0-0 Wolves Nothing much to report after six minutes, though Espanyol have been lively enough. The RCDE Stadium looks a quarter full at best.
Peep peep! The seven early games have started.
These are the latest scores.
“Dear Rob,” says Peter Van. “I fully agree that tonight’s top matchup is Porto – Leverkusen. But I’d keep an eye on Gent-Roma too. I saw Gent demolish Wolfsburg in the group stages and I was impressed, I think they might turn it around against a hot-and-cold Roma team. And they feature striker Jonathan David, sure to be a recurring feature in your Rumour Mill column.
“On a different note – do you share the (very, very wrong) opinion as most of your colleagues in the English media, according to whom the Europa Vase is a waste of time, useful only as an alternative path to the Big Megabucks League?”
I’m no Europa League disciple – I have a very snobbish subconscious, which I hate – but even so, that attitude has always irritated me. When you win a trophy you should be high on glory, not your win bonus. That’s why I’ve really enjoyed watching Wolves in Europe this season, because there has been no entitlement or elitism.
“Evening Rob,” says Simon McMahon. “After Rangers and Man City STORMED it on the continent last night, it’d be good to see more British teams making a STATEMENT tonight. It’s all part of the Brexit dividend, innit? If we ignore what happened to Liverpool, Tottenham and Chelsea, of course.”
I love that Britain (well, England) is even being shown up by Europe when it comes to VAR.
Some pre-match reading (and listening)
There’s a decent chance that there will be five British clubs in the last 16. Wolves and Arsenal should progress comfortably – should – while Celtic and Manchester United are favourites after managing score draws away to Copenhagen and Club Brugge respectively. The match of the night is probably in Portugal, where FC Porto start 2-1 down to Bayer Leverkusen.
And these are the 8pm games (9pm CET)
- Benfica v Shakhtar Donetsk (1-2)
- Internazionale v Ludogorets (2-0)
- Man Utd v Club Brugge (1-1)
- Arsenal v Olympiacos (1-0)
- Sevilla v CFR Cluj (1-1)
- Celtic v Copenhagen (1-1)
- Ajax v Getafe (0-2)
These are the 5.55pm kick-offs (6.55pm CET; first leg scores in brackets)
- Gent v Roma (0-1)
- Malmo v Wolfsburg (1-2)
- LASK v AZ Alkmaar (1-1)
- Basel v APOEL (3-0)
- Porto v Leverkusen (1-2)
- Istanbul Basaksehir v Sporting Lisbon (1-3)
- Espanyol v Wolves (0-4)
Hello and welcome to live coverage of the Europa League last 32, phase B, part deux, second leg ties. Rangers have already qualified for the next round, so there are 15 more places up for grabs. The kick-offs are staggered as usual, with seven at 5.55pm UK time and seven more at 8pm.
A gold star for the first person who shouted at their screen: “Hang on, 7+7 does NOT equal 15! Do you get paid for this? ‘The world’s leading liberal voice’? Liberal maths more like lol.”
Yes, the match between Salzburg v Frankfurt has been postponed (or, to put it in the parlance of our times, POSTPONED) because of a storm warning. It has been rescheduled (RESCHEDULED) for tomorrow afternoon.
That’ll be then, this is now: let’s look at tonight’s games.