Football | Europa League & Europa Conference League 2023 | Round of 16 Second Legs | Roundup

By Robert Wheeler

  • Arsenal lose on penalties to Sporting Lisbon
  • Manchester United get the job done on Real Betis
  • West Ham United see off AEK Larnaca

Europe – Arsenal suffered a shock defeat to Sporting Lisbon. However, Manchester United and West Ham United are both through to the quarter-finals.


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Europa League

Gunners stunned at the Emirates

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This match was level at 2-2 going into the fixture at the Emirates. So it was expected that the Premier League leaders would get the win on home soil.

It was looking like Arsenal were going to make it easy for themselves when Granit Xhaka gave them the lead in the first half. Nonetheless, a wonder strike from Pedro Goncalves who shot from inside the centre circle levelled the tie in the second period. The Gunners were stunned.

Neither side was to gain an advantage in extra time although Gabriel came very close for the home side. Sporting’s Manuel Ugarte was also sent off but his side managed to hold on.

There were seven perfect penalties in the shootout until Gabriel Martinelli‘s effort was saved by Antonio Adan. This left Nuno Santos the chance to win the game, which he duly did to spark mass celebrations for the Portuguese team.

Mikel Arteta‘s side may be out of Europe but the league is all that matters now at least they can focus solely on that.


United ease past Real Betis

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Manchester United won 1-0 on the night which capped off a 6-1 aggregate win over Real Betis to book their place in the quarter-finals.

The first half was a fairly even affair. Betis’ 40-year-old playmaker Joaquin forced  David de Gea to turn his shot from 25 yards onto the post. Wout Weghorst also hit the woodwork for United.

Marcus Rashford got the winner after the break with a great strike into the bottom corner. It was the Englishman’s 27th goal in all competitions this season.

This win over Betis will help Eric ten Hag‘s side get over their 7-0 defeat to Liverpool. The Red Devils have already won the EFL Cup this season and are still in Europe and the FA Cup so must not let their suffering on Merseyside spoil what could be a very good season for them.


Europa Conference League

West Ham put four past Larnaca

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West Ham United’s league form may be below par this season but in Europe they are unstoppable. David Moyes‘ side won 4-0 at the London Stadium which completed a 6-0 aggregate rout of Larnaca.

Gianluca Scamacca gave the Hammers the lead in the first half. It was a goal the Italian was in desperate need of as he has been under a lot of pressure recently.

Larnaca was then reduced to 10 men when Gustavo was shown a red card for a foul on Pablo Fornals. Sportingly Fornals tried to get the referee not to send him off but there was no going back on Georgi Kabakov‘s decision.

Not long after halftime, Jarrod Bowen scored twice in quick succession. Bowen was left out of the England squad earlier in the day but he was showing what he could offer Gareth Southgate‘s side.

With the fixture all but over it gave Moyes a chance to give some of the youngsters a chance. Divin Mubama was one who came on and he even scored with an impressive back-heeled finish to complete a fantastic night.

The draw for the quarter-finals will take place on Friday, March 17th at 1 pm GMT.