Europa League: AC Milan, Celtic, Rangers qualify for group stage

Europa League results
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Europa League results: AC Milan, Celtic and Rangers were all victorious and qualified for the group stage of the 2020-21 UEFA Europa League on Thursday.

[ MORE: Spurs win 7-2, qualify for Europa League group stage ]

Rio Ave 2-2 (8-9 PKs) AC Milan

AC Milan were seconds from being knocked out by Portuguese side Rio Ave and failing to qualify for the group stage before absolute insanity broke loose.

After coughing up a late 1-0 lead in regular time, Milan fell 2-1 behind in the first minute of extra time. The score remained that way until Hakan Calhanoglu equalized from the penalty spot in the 122nd minute.

It would be nowhere near the last penalty kick taken on the day.

What ensued was a 12-round penalty shootout which saw the order of penalty takers restarted after both goalkeepers failed to convert in the 10th round. It was the beginning of the end for Rio Ave, as they wouldn’t celebrate another successful try. Up until the goalkeepers took their turns, each side was 8-for-9 in the shootout. Both sides failed to score in the 11th round as they circled back to the front of the line (Rio Ave had a player sent off in the 120th minute), before center back Simon Kjaer converted in the 12th round and Rio Ave were unable to do the same.

Milan will be drawn out of Pot 3 when the draw is held on Friday.

Sarajevo 0-1 Celtic

Odsonne Edouard tapped home a spilled rebound for the only goal in the game in the 70th minute to send Celtic through to the group stage.

Celtic will be one of 12 sides to come out of Pot 1.

Rangers 2-1 Galatasaray

Scott Arfield and James Tavernier each scored shortly after halftime, and that was just enough to secure Rangers’ place in the group stage. Galatasaray would pull a goal back in the 87th minute, but Steven Gerrard’s side held on to their 2-1 scoreline.