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Premier League clubs Liverpool and Tottenham joined Newcastle in the next round of the UEFA Europa League after winning their last round of group matches. Also advancing to the round of 32 were Inter Milan, Atletico Madrid, Lyon and Lazio.
Liverpool travelled to Italy to face Udinese knowing what was at stake and just snuck through on goal difference after a 1-0 win, thanks to a first-half Jordan Henderson goal. Tottenham welcomed Greek side Panathinaikos in a winner-takes-all clash at White Hart Lane and the English side came out on top with a 3-1 win that secured their passage into the knockout stages with goals from Emmanuel Adebayor, Jermain Defoe and an own goal from goalkeeper Orestis Karnezis. The other English club in the fray, Newcastle, had already qualified coming into the last round of the group stage and travelled to play French side Bordeaux to determine the group winner. Newcastle though finished 2nd in the group after they lost 2-0. Elsewhere, defending champions Atletico Madrid progressed despite a 1-0 loss to Viktoria Plzen. Inter Milan drew 2-2 at home with Neftchi Baku but were already confident of their place in the next round.
Udinese 0â€“1 Liverpool
Brendan Rodgers handed a rare start to star striker Luis Suarez in Europe as his team needed to win in Italy to ensure progression to the knockout stages. There were also starts for Nuri Sahin, Joe Allen and Stewart Downing. Udinese, who had nothing to play for, left their captain Antonio Di Natale on the bench and made a bright start but Liverpool started to take control of the game. But the away side were forced into an early substitution as Jonjo Shelvey replaced Sahin.
Liverpool took the lead in the 23rd minute when a Downing corner was ping-ponged in the box and drilled past the keeper by Henderson for a rare goal for the Reds. Henderson, Suarez and Suso all had chance to double their sideâ€™s lead but could not take advantage. Udinese had defender Giovani Pasquale sent off in the 79th minute for a second yellow and the loss condemned them to bottom of the group. A 3-1 win for Young Boys over Anzhi Makhachkala counted for nothing as Liverpool secured top spot in the group and were joined by the Russian club in the last 32.
Tottenham 3â€“1 Panathinaikos
The London club welcomed Panathinaikos knowing anything other than a defeat was enough for them to qualify from the group as runners-up but the result did not come without a scare. Andre Villas-Boas opted to start Defoe and Adebayor together again for the first time since the humiliating loss to Arsenal and also gave starts to Clint Dempsey, Aaron Lennon and Jan Vertonghen. The home side went into the break after Adebayor gave Spurs the lead midway through the first half.
However, Panathinaikos struck back 9 minutes into the second half through a Zeca goal. But a goal for Defoe and an unfortunate own goal for goalkeeper Karnezis ensured a comfortable victory for Villas-Boas and entry into the next round of the competition as group runners-up. The other match in the group saw Lazio travel to Maribor and coming out 4-1 victors to qualify as group winners.
Bordeaux 2â€“0 Newcastle United
Newcastle headed into the last round of group fixtures boasting an unbeaten record in the competition so far and the clash with French side Bourdeaux was to determine which side would qualify as group winner, as both teams had already secured progress to the next stage. Manager Alan Pardew opted to leave out several key players from his side as chances were given to a lot of fringe squad members. This meant starts for Shola Ameobi, Sammy Ameobi, Sylvian Marveaux and Nile Ranger. Papiss Demba Cisse started from the bench as he looked to replicate his goal scoring form from last year.
But a brace from Cheick Diabete for the home side with goals in either half condemned Newcastle to their first European defeat of the season and avenged Bordeaux's 3-0 loss at the Sports Direct Arena in October. Diabete headed in for the first goal in the 29th minute and doubled his sideâ€™s lead when he slid the ball through third choice goalkeeper Rob Elliotâ€™s legs 18 minutes from time. The loss means Newcastle now head into the knockout rounds as group runners-up and hoping for a favorable draw.
Udinese 0 â€“ 1 Liverpool
Viktoria Plzen 1 â€“ 0 Athletico Madrid
Bourdeaux 2 â€“ 0 Newcastle United
Napoli 1 â€“ 3 PSV Eindhoven
Inter 2 â€“ 2 Neftchi Baku
Athletic Bilbao 0 â€“ 0 Sparta Prague
Ol. Lyon 2 â€“ 0 Ironi Kiryat Shmona
Tottenham 3 â€“ 1 Panathinaikos
Leverkusen 1 â€“ 0 Rosenborg
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