Europa League: Levante cruise into the last 16 after overcoming Olympiakos
Last Updated: February 21, 2013 11:14pm
Obafemi Martins: The striker scored the only goal of the game in Athens
Levante secured their place in the last 16 of the Europa League after an early goal by Obafemi Martins set up a comfortable victory over Olympiakos in Athens.
Levante secured their place in the last 16 of the Europa League after an early goal by Obafemi Martins set up a comfortable victory over Olympiacos in Athens.
Progressing into the next round was a relatively straightforward task for Juan Ignacio Martinez's side after their comprehensive 3-0 win in Valencia in the first leg, and despite their opponents being roared on by 29,000 fans in the Georgios Karaiskakis Stadium, they started the brighter of the two sides.
Jose Barkero fired their first warning shot, striking the ball just over the bar from outside the area in the second minute.
Paulo Machado responded immediately for the hosts with a long-range effort that went wide of Keylor Navas' goal but the tie was all but killed off when Martins struck after nine minutes.
The Olympiakos defence naively left the Nigerian striker completely unmarked while facing a corner, allowing him to nod Barkero's cross into the back of the net from the middle of the six-yard box.
The goal meant the Greeks needed to score five times without reply if they were to progress, and although Spanish coach Michel's side did not give up trying to find the net at least once, their efforts were in vain.
The closest they came to a goal was from an injury-time header by centre-back Dimitrios Siovas that was destined for the bottom corner of the Levante goal, but Navas produced an outstanding diving save to keep the effort out and maintain a clean sheet on the night and over both legs.
Levante can now look forward to a last-16 tie with Russian side Rubin Kazan, who knocked out the holders Atletico Madrid.
Thu 21st Feb - Round of 32
Rubin0 - 1A Madrid
Cluj0 - 3Inter
Metalist0 - 1Newcastle
Lazio2 - 0M'gladbach
Lyon1 - 1Tottenham
Dnipro1 - 1Basel
Genk0 - 2Stuttgart
Fenerbahce1 - 0BATE Borisov
Olympiakos0 - 1Levante
Liverpool3 - 1Zenit
Bordeaux1 - 0Dynamo Kiev
Benfica2 - 1Leverkusen
S Bucuresti2 - 0Ajax
Hannover1 - 1A Mak'kala
Plzen2 - 0Napoli
Chelsea1 - 1Sp Prague
Europa League Group A
|3||BSC Young Boys Bern||6||10|
Europa League Group B
|1||FC Viktoria Plzen||6||13|
Europa League Group C
Europa League Group D
Europa League Group E
|1||FC Steaua Bucuresti||6||11|
Europa League Group F
Europa League Group G
|3||Videoton FC Fehervar||6||6|
Europa League Group H
Europa League Group I
|4||Hapoel Kiryat Shmona||6||2|
Europa League Group J
Europa League Group K
Europa League Group L