• Europa League round-up

Liverpool & Spurs made to wait to progress

ESPN staff
November 22, 2012

Newcastle United qualified for the last-32 of the Europa League on Thursday, but Liverpool and Tottenham both missed out on the opportunity to secure their progression with draws.

Andre Villas-Boas's side scraped a 0-0 draw against Lazio in Rome to leave them needing just a draw against Panathinaikos in the final group game to go through, while a late equaliser for Young Boys against Liverpool leaves Brendan Rodgers' side needing to win away to Udinese to reach the knockout stages.

Europa League results and table

Maligned midfielder Joe Cole was denied his chance to be hailed a hero after Liverpool conceded a late equaliser to draw 2-2 with Young Boys and leave their Europa League challenge in the balance.

The 31-year-old's first Liverpool goal in 19 months appeared to have secured the victory to ensure progress to the knockout stages from Group A.

But having led once through Jonjo Shelvey's fourth European goal of the season only to be pegged back by Raul Bobadilla's brilliant equaliser, Brendan Rodgers' side conceded to Elsad Zverotic with two minutes to go.

Liverpool now have to avoid defeat in Udinese in a fortnight to have a chance of progressing, although the Italian side are out following a 2-0 defeat against Anzhi Makhachkala.

Earlier in the evening, Lazio's goalless draw with Tottenham in Europa League Group J was enough to send the Italians through but second place remains far from certain after a Victor Vitolo penalty gave Panathinaikos a 1-0 win over Maribor, who had Ales Mejac sent off.

In Rome, Libor Kozak, making a rare start, missed a hatful of chances for the hosts, but Spurs goalkeeper Hugo Lloris was equally important in keeping Lazio at bay.

The Frenchman, chosen ahead of Brad Friedel, denied Kozak twice in the first half and was a steady and assuring presence throughout.

Tottenham rarely threatened - although Gareth Bale's early strike should not have been ruled out for offside.

The result means Spurs and Panathinaikos will effectively play off for second place at White Hart Lane next month, with anything other than a defeat good enough for the Londoners.

Maritimo substitute Fidelis ruined Newcastle's night as they limped rather than marched into the knockout stages.

The striker, who might even have snatched victory deep into stoppage time, came off the bench to cancel out Sylvain Marveaux's first Magpies goal 11 minutes from time and allow Bordeaux to climb to the top of Group D by virtue of their 2-1 victory over Club Brugge in Belgium.

Alan Pardew's men will now have to win in France on December 6 if they are to snatch back top spot in a game which will be a dead rubber in terms of qualification, but upon which much could rest as the Champions League drop-outs prepare to enter the competition in the new year.

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