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Europa League: Good but not decisive results for Spanish sides

Spain's three representatives in the Europa League enjoyed a positive if not decisive night in the football competition.

FEATURED WRITER
News 20 Feb 2015, 15:59 IST
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Villarreal
Villarreal's Nigerian forward Ikechukwu Uche (C) celebrates his goal against FC Salzburg 
 

Spain's three representatives in the Europa League enjoyed a positive if not decisive night in the football competition.

Villarreal produced a positive display at home to defeat Austrian side Red Bull Salzburg 2-1 in the El Madrigal Stadium in Thursday, reports Xinhua.

Ikecheuku Uche put the Spanish side ahead after 32 minutes with a close-range finish after an impressive passing move, before Spanish striker Jonathan Soriano continued his impressive scoring run for Salzburg with a penalty to level the score early in the second half.

Denis Cheryshev scored an excellent volley 10 minutes after the break to restore Villarreal's lead and give them a narrow lead to defend in Austria next week.

Villarreal showed themselves to be the better side, but a 0-1 defeat in Salzburg would see them out of the competition.

Vicente Iborra's goal 20 minutes from time also gave Sevilla a narrow one goal margin to defend in the second leg of their tie as Unai Emery's side won 1-0 at home to Borussia Munchengladbach.

Sevilla had to suffer for their win, but the former Levante midfielder scored the vital goal, which coupled with a clean sheet allows the reigning champions to be optimistic for the return leg.

Playing away from home against an in-form Torino, Inaki Williams opened the scoring for Athletic Club Bilbao after just nine minutes, becoming the first ever black player to score for the Basque outfit in the process.

But two excellent goals from former Barcelona striker Maxi Lopez before the break looked to have turned the game in Torino's favour.

However, after suffering at the start of the second half Athletic, who were led by an excellent display from Iker Muniain, drew level when Carlos Gurpegui headed home a Benat Etxeberria free kick and as Torino ran out of gas in the closing minutes.

Gurpegui was unfortunate to see another header bounce back off the woodwork which would have given his side a considerable advantage for next week's return leg

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