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Late goalkeeper strike seals knockout spot in UEFA Youth League

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Club Brugge goalkeeper Senne Lammens may just be 17 years old, but he just lived every goalkeeper’s dream: to score a dramatic equalizer in the dying seconds of a game to send the club through to a European competition’s knockout stage.

The young goalkeeper came forward on a corner in the 94th minute of a game against Real Madrid in the UEFA Youth League Wednesday morning in Belgium. With the visitors leading 2-1 and added time just about expired, Brugge needed to score an equalizer to secure passage to the knockout stage, lest they be left at the mercy of Galatasaray’s match against PSG.

Lammens delivered. The corner swung in to the top of the six-yard box and the youngster was on hand to head home a pinpoint effort inside the far post.

The header was quite literally the last act of the game, with stoppage time already creeping more than 60 seconds past the minimum three added minutes.

Lammens has shuttled back and forth between the youth squad and the senior squad this season serving occasionally as an emergency third goalkeeper behind Simon Mignolet and Ethan Horvath. Mostly, though, he’s been with the youth squad appearing in five of their six UEFA Youth League games, with three wins and a draw.

Two Club Brugge players sent off for equalizer celebrations

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The visitors were ready to party after scoring a stoppage time equalizer in the UEFA Champions League, but referee Ivan Kruzliak wasn’t pleased with their jubilant response.

Krepin Diatta scored a remarkable goal to keep Club Brugge’s European hopes alive, ripping a low rocket from distance that leveled the score with Galatasaray in Turkey.

[ LIVE: Champions League scores ]

But Senegalese striker Diatta was shown a second yellow card for taking off his shirt in celebration, while Angola international Clinton Mata was shown a second yellow as well for snapping the corner flag pole with a celebration.

It’s letter of the law, but kinda unnecessary, isn’t it Ivan?

Brugge now has one more point than Gala. The Belgians host Real Madrid on the final match day, while Gala heads to PSG.

The tweet below says, “Worth it.” The moment was terrific, but worth may be determined in how Brugge fares without two key players on the next match day.

Real Madrid comes back to draw 10-man Club Brugge

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Emmanuel Bonaventure Dennis scored a pair of first half goals to give Club Brugge a stunning lead over Real Madrid en route to a 2-2 draw at the Bernabeu in UEFA Champions League action on Tuesday.

Sergio Ramos pulled a goal back via a razor-thin onside call which withstood VAR, and Casemiro nodded an equalizer home in the 85th minute. That was a minute after Club Brugge’s Ruud Vormer was sent off for a second yellow card.

Real dominated the second half but its lone point leaves it bottom of the group, three goals of differential back of Galatasaray. The Turkish side drew Club Brugge and meets PSG later.

[ LIVE: Champions League scores ]

Club Brugge chased Thibaut Courtois from the match at halftime, and perhaps the move was massive as Alphonse Areola stopped Dennis’ breakaway bid for a hat trick.

Courtois has not been in form, but the move was still surprising given that both of Dennis’ goals had an element of the fortunate to them.

Toni Kroos and Casemiro willed Real back into the match, as attacker Eden Hazard continued his early season struggles at Real.

UCL roundup: Ajax qualify for group stage thanks to Mexico’s Alvarez

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A roundup of all of Thursday’s UEFA Champions League qualifying action…

[ UCL POTS/DRAW: Where will Man City, Liverpool, Chelsea, Spurs end up? ]

Ajax 2-0 (2-0) APOEL Nicosia

Wednesday was a good day for both the United States and Mexico national teams, with regard to Ajax’s Champions League fortunes, as 18-year-old American right back Sergiño Dest and 21-year-old Mexican defender Edson Alvarez shone brightly.

Dest, just hours after receiving his first call-up to Gregg Berhalter’s senior national team, played all 90 minutes for last season’s semifinalists and acquitted himself quite well in Ajax’s biggest game of the season thus far. Alvarez, who is a virtual lock to be named to Tata Martino’s team for next week’s clash with the USMNT, bagged the opening goal — his first for Ajax after joining the reigning Eredivisie champions for $17 million this summer.

[ MORE: Zlatan open to Man United return | USMNT squad for Mexico clash ]

Ajax thought they had a second in the 50th minute, but Klaas-Jan Huntelaar saw his goal wiped away for a rather dubious offside decision via video review.

No need for Ajax to fret, though, as Dusan Tadic finished a free-flowing sequence with a stunning strike from a tight angle in the 80th minute to make it 2-0 on the day, and on aggregate.

Elsewhere in UCL qualifying

Club Brugge 2-1 (3-1) LASK
Slavia Prague 1-0 (2-0) CFR Cluj

LIVE, UCL: Amid tense encounters, Ajax battle for group stage

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The second legs of the UEFA Champions League playoff round take center stage on Wednesday, as Ajax, Club Brugge and Slavia Prague all host ties which are in the balance.

[ LIVE: Champions League scores ]

All three games will be tight and tense occasions as the winners will get the final three spots in the UCL group stage for the 2019-20 season.

Ajax, who reached the semifinals of the UCL last season, drew 0-0 away at APOEL Nicosia last time out and were pretty lucky to get that result. They are expected to advance in Amsterdam but their young team has to improve as the Cypriot champions looked dangerous on set pieces and counter attacks in the first leg.

Club Brugge and Slavia Prague both have slender advantages heading into the second legs, with Brugge winning 1-0 against Linz ASK in Austria and Slavia winning by the same scoreline in Romania against Cluj in the first leg. With so much on the line financially for all of these clubs, Wednesday’s clashes will be nail-bitters.

Below is the full schedule for Wednesday’s games, with all games kicking off at 3 p.m. ET.

Click on the link above to follow all of the action live, while we will have you covered with a roundup of the action right here on Pro Soccer Talk.

Ajax v. APOEL Nicosia (0-0)
Slavia Prague v. CFR Cluj (1-0)
Club Brugge v. LASK (1-0)