A roundup of this week’s UEFA Champions League qualification action…
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Monaco 3-1 (4-3) Fenerbahce
Valere Germain scored twice (2nd and 66th minutes) and Falcao, back at Monaco after a pair of non-successful loan spells, at Manchester United and Chelsea, converted one from the penalty spot (18th minute) as last year’s third-place finishers in Ligue 1 did just enough to overcome a 2-1 first-leg deficit and knock off the second-place finishers in the Turkish Super Lig.
PAOK Thessaloniki 1-2 (2-3) Ajax
23-year-old Davy Klaassen, who has been linked with a number of top European clubs this summer, bagged a brace which included a dramatic, tie-winning goal in the 87th minute to send the Eredivisie’s second-place finishers through to the final round of qualification playoffs, where they’ll be drawn against one of Roma, Monaco, BSC Young Boys, Steaua Bucuresti or Rostov. Meanwhile, Manchester City, Porto, Villarreal and Borussia Monchengladbach join Ajax as the other seeded teams on the champions route of the playoffs.
Celtic 2-1 (3-2) Astana
Speaking of dramatic, late winners, Celtic left it until the very end of regular time before they secured passage into the final round of qualification on the back of Moussa Dembele‘s 90th-minute penalty kick to break a 2-2 aggregate deadlock in favor of Brendan Rodgers‘ side. Leigh Griffiths converted from the spot in the final minute of the first half, sandwiching a 62nd-minute goal for the reigning Kazakhstani champions. Astana finished the game with just nine players after two were sent off in the moments surrounding Dembele’s late winner.
Elsewhere in UCL qualification
Copenhagen 3-0 (4-1) Astra Giurgiu
APOEL 3-0 (4-2) Rosenborg
Dinamo Tbilisi 0-1 (0-3) Dinamo Zagreb
Hapoel Be’er Sheva 1-0 (1-0) Olympiacos
Legia Warsaw 0-0 (1-0) Trencin
Qarabag 1-1 (1-1 – away goals) Viktoria Plzen
Dundalk 3-0 (3-1) BATE Borisov
Red Star Belgrade 2-4 (4-6) Ludogorets Razgrad
Red Bull Salzburg 2-0 (3-0) Partizani
Steaua Bucuresti 2-0 (3-1) Sparta Prague
BSC Young Boys 2-0 (2-2 – PKs) Shakhtar Donetsk
Anderlecht 0-2 (2-4) Rostov