Europa League: Five-star Napoli thrash Bruges, Dortmund win again
Napoli`s Jose Callejon and Dries Mertens scored twice each as the Italians began their Europa League group stage campaign with a 5-0 thrashing of Belgian outfit Club Bruges to match their biggest ever European win on Thursday.
London: Napoli`s Jose Callejon and Dries Mertens scored twice each as the Italians began their Europa League group stage campaign with a 5-0 thrashing of Belgian outfit Club Bruges to match their biggest ever European win on Thursday.
Borussia Dortmund`s Park Joo-ho netted a dramatic winner three minutes into stoppage time on his debut to secure a 2-1 victory over FK Krasnodar while Ajax Amsterdam also left it late to snatch a 2-2 home draw with Celtic in a battle between two former European champions.
Five times continental champions Liverpool`s stuttering start to the season continued as they were pegged back to draw 1-1 at French side Bordeaux as Europe`s second tier competition began with a flurry of games and goals.
Napoli had failed to win any of their opening three Serie A games this season, but crushed Bruges in a one-sided demolition that began after five minutes when Callejon`s intended cross caught out visiting keeper Sinan Bolat and curled inside the far post.
The Italians were 3-0 up by halftime in their Group D opener after Mertens showed his scoring instincts to net with two sharp finishes within six minutes of each other while Marek Hamsik added another and Callejon rounded off the rout with a low finish.
Dortmund, under new coach Thomas Tuchel, had trailed Kuban Krasnodar in Group C to Pavel Mamaev`s 12th-minute opener, but Matthias Ginter headed home to level a minute into first-half stoppage time.
After another 45 minutes of dogged resistance from Krasnodar, the Russians` rearguard was pierced at the death when Park dived to head home, extending Dortmund`s winning start to the season to 10 games in all competitions.
Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers would have dreamt of such a consistent start to the campaign, but his struggling side again showed their vulnerability as they conceded late to draw with Bordeaux in Group B.
The English team, who had lost their last two Premier League games conceding three goals in each, took the lead when Adam Lallana nutmegged a defender to cut inside the penalty area and place a delicate sidefoot finish into the far corner after 65 minutes.
With a number of inexperienced players in the side, however, Liverpool were pegged back as Brazilian Jussie slammed the ball into the net with nine minutes to play.
Celtic twice took the lead against Ajax in Group A with goals from Nir Bitton and Mikael Lustig either side of an equaliser from Viktor Fischer.
The second half turned sour for the Scottish side, however, as Emilio Izaguirre was sent off for a second booking with 16 minutes to play and Lasse Schoene levelled after 84 minutes with a whipped cross that eluded everyone and found the corner of the net.
Austria`s Rapid Vienna beat La Liga side Villarreal 2-1 at home in Group E, Olympique de Marseille won 3-0 at Groningen in Group F, and Norwegian side Molde made a good start in Group A by winning 3-1 against Fenerbahce in Turkey.