- As If A Day Never Passed... -
UEFA EUROPA LEAGUE - 3RD QUALIFYING ROUND, LEG 1
|Saint Etienne||0 - 0||AEK|
AEK returned to European play for the first time in 4 years and played to a goalless draw in France against Saint Etienne in the 1st leg of the UEFA Europa League 3rd Qualifying Round. The Dikefalos showed that they belong in Europe and will host Saint Etienne in one week for a place in the playoff qualifying round.
AEK put on a solid display on all ends of the pitch against Saint Etienne for the first leg in France. Saint Etienne controlled possession for the first half, but AEK prevented the hosts from threatening their goal. Anestis was called into action late in the half, denying the French side the opener, and the teams went goalless into the break.
The second half was similar to the first with AEK putting on a great tactical display. Saint Etienne began to press in the later part of the half with AEK’s midfield and defense shutting down the host’s attack. The match continued in favor of AEK and the final whistle came from Italian referee.
AEK proved worthy in their return to European play with tonight’s result against last year’s 6th placed team in the French Ligue 1. In one week, AEK will host Saint Etienne in Athens for the second leg with high hopes of progressing to the next round.