Europa League: Frustrated and angry Wolves draw in Greece

Rangers struggle at Ibrox as several matches are played behind closed doors or postponed

 Pedro Neto celebrates scoring at an empty Karaiskakis Stadium. Photograph: Getty Images

Pedro Neto celebrates scoring at an empty Karaiskakis Stadium. Photograph: Getty Images

 

Pedro Neto earned Wolves a valuable 1-1 draw at 10-man Olympiacos as they forgot their frustration at being forced to play amid the coronavirus outbreak.

The substitute’s deflected strike cancelled out Youssef El Arabi’s opener in the Europa League last 16 tie in Athens.

Ruben Semedo’s first-half red card in the virtually empty Georgios Karaiskakis Stadium had given Wolves early encouragement but the game will only be memorable for the circumstances it was played in.

Nuno Espirito Santo’s side return from Greece with a positive result in exceptionally trying circumstances, although there is no guarantee next Thursday’s second leg will go ahead.

With a backdrop of a deadly global pandemic, boss Nuno again criticised the decision to play pre-match, calling it absurd.

Wolves had lobbied Uefa to postpone the game — an appeal which was rejected — after Olympiacos owner Evangelos Marinakis announced he had tested positive for coronavirus on Tuesday.

Meanwhile Bayer Leverkusen celebrated a 3-1 win at Rangers in front of a full house at Ibrox and Istanbul Basaksehir fans rejoiced after an 88th-minute penalty by Edin Visca gave them a 1-0 home win over FC Copenhagen.

Rangers fell behind to a 37th-minute Kai Havertz penalty, given after a lengthy VAR check as George Edmundson handled a Charles Aranguiz cross. Aranguiz scored midway through the second half as he drilled in a half-cleared cross before Edmundson pulled one back for Rangers, heading home a James Tavernier corner.

Substitute Leon Bailey then put Leverkusen in the driving seat to reach the last eight with a classy late goal, leaving his marker flat-footed with a cheeky dribble before curling a sublime shot past goalkeeper Allan McGregor.

Swiss side FC Basel stunned Eintracht Frankfurt 3-0 away behind closed doors, as Samuele Campo curled in a 27th minute free kick before substitute Kevin Bua made it 2-0 and set up Fabian Frei to drill home the third. Shakhtar Donetsk took full advantage of an empty ground at Vfl Wolfsburg and beat the German side 2-1 thanks to goals from Junior Moraes and Marcos Bahia, who cancelled out John Anthony’s Brooks effort for the hosts.

Viktor Kovalenko missed a penalty for Shakhtar before Wout Weghorst also squandered a spot-kick for Wolfsburg in an eventful first half. Two matches were postponed as Spanish side Getafe refused to travel to Italy and face Inter Milan while AS Roma said they could not travel to Spain to play Sevilla because of flight restrictions.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.