SPORTS

PAOK makes last 32 of Europa League

GEORGE GEORGAKOPOULOS

TAGS: Soccer

PAOK joined Olympiakos in the last 32 of the Europa League as it beat Slovan Liberec at home on Thursday, while Olympiakos and Panathinaikos ended the group stage with defeats.

PAOK had to better the result of Qarabag against Fiorentina, and it did so quite emphatically, finishing second in its group. The Thessaloniki club downed Slovan 2-0, courtesy of goals by Garry Rodrigues and Dimitris Pelkas, one in each half.

Consequently PAOK has collected 10 points from six games (including the victory at Fiorentina) to finish second, three points behind the Italians and three points ahead of the Azeris.

APOEL doubled its wins over Olympiakos winning 2-0 in Nicosia after its 1-0 triumph in Piraeus. In yet another poor showing this season Olympiakos did nothing with its ball possession, while its wobbly defense saw Pieros Sotiriou force Manuel Da Costa to concede an own goal and Igor De Camargo add a second late in the game.

Olympiakos finished second with eight points, level with Young Boys, but advanced on its superior head-to-head record with the Swiss. APOEL deservedly won the group with 12 points.

Panathinaikos finished a Europa League group stage it will want to forget, going down 2-0 to Celta Vigo in Athens on Thursday.

John Guidetti opened the score for Celta after just four minutes and then earned a second-half penalty that Nemanja Radoja successfully converted.

The Greens were the punchbag of their group and finished rock bottom with just one point from six games.

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