UEFA Champions League update: Dinamo Zagreb qualifies

Chidi Nwoke

Dinamo Zagreb players and staff celebrating UEFA Champions League qualification

In Norway, Croatian champions Dinamo Zagreb reached the Champions League group stage after a 1-1 draw at Rosenborg, following a 2-0 first-leg win on Tuesday.

Babajide David scored an early goal for Rosenborg just after 11 minutes to give the home side a glimmer of hope, in reaching the group stage of the champions league.

With 19 minutes to play, Amer Gojak restored Dinamo’s aggregate two-goal margin when he smacked a rising left-foot shot just inside the near post from outside the Rosenborg penalty area.

Amer Gojak celebrates goal against Rosenborg

Gojak’s goal put the tie beyond the Norwegian side’s reach.

Red Star Belgrade vs Young Boys

Dinamo Zagreb were joined by Serbian champions Red Star Belgrade — who advanced to the Champions League group stage for the second successive season — with a 1-1 home draw with Young Boys, sending the 1991 European Cup winners through on away goals.

Roared on by an animated 50,000 home crowd, Red Star — who earned a 2-2 draw in the reverse fixture — were on the back foot for an hour, and rode their luck at times before Aleksa Vukanovic put them ahead.

Marko Marin released Rodic with a delightful pass and the left-back raced down the flank to deliver a sharp cross for Vukanovic, who headed home from six yards at the near post.

Aleksa Vukanović heads home to put Red Star ahead

The home side endured a tense last 10 minutes and brought Young Boys back into the game, after E.F. Ben Nabouhane turned Saidy Janko’s shot into his own net for an own-goal.

Krasnodar vs Olympiacos

In Russia, Olympiacos won 2-1 at Krasnodar to complete a 6-1 aggregate drubbing of the Russian side.

Olympiacos arrived in Krasnodar with a 4-0 first-leg cushion, and though the home side gave themselves a glimmer of hope through Daniil Utkin’s goal in the 10th minute, Youssef El-Arabi scored twice for the visitors to book their group-stage berth.

Olympiacos players celebrating victory over Krasnodar in Russia

Three more teams to go before the UEFA Champions League play-offs conclude. Last season’s semi-finalists Ajax will take on APOEL Nicosia after a 0-0 first leg result in Cyprus.

Slavia Praha will face CFR Cluj after a 1-0 first leg away victory in Romania, while Club Brugge will play LASK after a tough 1-0 first leg away victory in Austria.


Chidi Nwoke.