11th December, 2014
Besiktas beat Tottenham 1-0 in the Europa League on Thursday to climb above the Londoners and win Group C on a night that saw the floodlights fail twice.
In the final round of group games Tottenham only needed to draw to top the pile, but a 60th-minute tap in from the six-yard line from Cenk Tosun gave the Turks the game and the group.
Spurs ended runners-up and thereby go into the hat for Monday’s draw along with the other top two finishers as well as the Champions League third placed teams, Olympiakos, Liverpool, Zenit, Anderlecht, Roma, Ajax, Sporting Lisbon and Athletic Bilbao.
Besiktas may end up paying a UEFA fine as the game was held up early in the first half for a full 17 minutes with the referee ordering the players off the Ataturk Olympic Stadium pitch.
The same thing then happened in time added after 90 minutes with another lengthy delay leaving fans to make the best of the darkness by holding aloft cigarette lighters and mobile phones.
Spurs were themselves were fined 15,000 euros by UEFA earlier Thursday for pitch invasion delays in their last Europa League game, but they will be more concerned by three spurned chances in Istanbul from centre-forward Roberto Soldado.
Celtic had only pride to play for when they travelled to Croatia to take on Dinamo Zagreb in Group D as they knew they’d finish runners up come what may.
In the end the hosts were on top with Marko Pjaca hitting a hat-trick as they ran out 4-3 winners.
Pajca’s third was a brilliant long-range shot, after he’d rounded a defender and produced a low strike for the first and fired home after getting to a loose ball first for the second.
Salzburg ended up taking 16 points in Group D rounding off their romp with a 5-1 home win over Astra with a pair of goals apiece from Brazilian striker Alan and Slovenian, Kevin Kampl.
Zurich went into the last game in Group A knowing they had to beat Borussia Moenchengladbach but got thumped 3-0 in Germany.
Instead Spain’s Villareal went through in second thanks to a handy 2-0 away win over Apollon in Cyprus thanks to first-half goals from Gerard Moreno and Luciano Vietto.
Club Brugges clinched Group B by a point after a 2-1 win over Helsinki and needed the result as second placed Torino thumped Copenhagen 5-1.
Dinamo Moscow beat PSV Eindhoven 1-0 in the Netherlands as both teams qualified from Group E with the Russians returning an impressive 18 points from six games.
Inter Milan were joined in the hat for Monday’s draw by Ukraine outfit Dnipropetrovsk who climbed off the bottom of Group F with a 1-0 win over Saint Etienne.