Milan and Benfica book spots in Europa League last 16

AFP , Thursday 22 Feb 2024

AC Milan overcame a spirited Rennes 5-3 on aggregate despite a 3-2 loss in Thursday's second leg to reach the Europa League last 16, where they will be joined by fellow former European champions Benfica.

AC Milan s Luka Jovic, right, celebrates after scoring against Rennes during the Europa League soccer match between Rennes and AC Milan at the Roazhon Park stadium in Rennes, western France, Thursday, Feb. 22, 2024. AP


Benjamin Bourigeaud scored a hat-trick for Rennes, including a pair of penalties, but goals from Luka Jovic and Rafael Leao ensured Milan were never really in danger of blowing a 3-0 lead from the first leg.

Benfica also saw off French opposition as a 0-0 draw away to Toulouse was enough to send the Portuguese side through following their 2-1 victory in last week's first leg in Lisbon.

Marseille host Shakhtar Donetsk later in Jean-Louis Gasset's first match at the helm following the exit of Gennaro Gattuso. The tie is level at 2-2 after the opening match in Hamburg.

Last season's runners-up Roma take on Feyenoord in the Italian capital after a 1-1 draw in the first leg.

Sporting Lisbon are 3-1 up on Swiss champions Young Boys going into the return fixture, while Galatasaray have a 3-2 edge over Sparta Prague.

The draw for the last 16 will be made at UEFA headquarters in Nyon on Friday.

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