Liverpool Thrash Sparta Prague, Take Commanding Lead in Europa League

## Liverpool Thrash Sparta Prague, Take Commanding Lead in Europa League

Liverpool Thrash Sparta Prague, Take Huge Lead in Europa League

Liverpool cruised to a 5-1 victory over Sparta Prague in the first leg of their Europa League round of 16 tie, putting themselves in a strong position to advance to the quarterfinals.

The Reds got off to a quick start with a penalty converted by Alexis Mac Allister in the 6th minute. Darwin Nunez then stole the show, scoring twice including a stunning long-range effort to make it 2-0 in the 25th minute. He added another goal in stoppage time to complete his brace.

Sparta Prague did manage to pull one back through a Conor Bradley own goal early in the second half, but Luis Diaz restored Liverpool’s three-goal advantage soon after. Dominik Szoboszlai added a consolation goal for the home sid

e in stoppage time, but it proved to be a mere footnote in a dominant Liverpool performance.

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The win is a major boost for Jurgen Klopp’s side ahead of a crucial Premier League clash against Manchester City next weekend. It also comes as a welcome return to form for Mohamed Salah, who made a substitute appearance in the 74th minute after recovering from injury.

In other Europa League news, Bayer Leverkusen’s unbeaten run extended to 35 games in all competitions after they salvaged a dramatic 2-2 draw against Qarabag in Azerbaijan. Roma continued their resurgence under new coach Daniele De Rossi with a convincing 4-0 win over Brighton.

Olympique de Marseille continued their goal-scoring spree under Jean-Louis Gasset, putting four past 10-man Villarreal. AC Milan also enjoyed a comfortable victory, defeating Slavia Prague 4-2 despite conceding an early goal.

There were wins for Freiburg, Benfica, Maccabi Tel Aviv, Molde, Fenerbahce, and Dinamo Zagreb, while Aston Villa secured a valuable away draw against Ajax. Fiorentina secured a dramatic last-gasp victory over Maccabi Haifa in a game played in Budapest due to ongoing conflict in Israel.

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