Europa League: Tight first legs in all but one Round of 16 pairing

AP Photo/Yorgos Karahalis
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There weren’t too many surprises in Thursday’s first legs of the UEFA Europa League’s Round of 16.

Just two visitors won, Anderlecht and Genk, leaving every tie but one realistically up for grabs in one week’s time.

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We’ve already dealt with Manchester United’s 1-1 draw in Russia, and Alexandre Lacazette’s virtuoso performance in Lyon’s defeat of Roma.

Elsewhere, the all-Belgian tie between Gent and Genk ended with five away goals. Tanzanian striker Mbwana Samatta led the way for Genk, bagging a brace in the 5-2 win.

Ageless Esteban Cambiasso scored as Olympiacos only managed a 1-1 home draw against Vincent Aboubakar and Besiktas, while former Cardiff outcast Andreas Cornelius scored the match-winner as Copenhapen scooped up a 2-1 home win over Ajax.

In-form USMNT winger Fabian Johnson was dangerous again as Borussia Monchengladbach notched an away goal through Jonas Hofmann in a 1-1 draw with Schalke. The match is the second between the three sides in two weeks.

Thursday’s UEFA Europa League first legs

Schalke 1-1 Borussia Monchengladbach
Lyon 4-2 Roma
Gent 2-5 Genk
Olympiacos 1-1 Besiktas
Celta Vigo 2-1 Krasnodar
Rostov 1-1 Manchester United
APOEL 0-1 Anderlecht
Copenhagen 2-1 Ajax