Mikel Arteta knows Thomas Partey is expected to hit the ground running at Arsenal but is confident the high-profile arrival can adapt quickly to the Premier League. 

The Gunners beat the clock to sign Partey from Atletico Madrid on deadline day after triggering the Ghana midfielder's release clause, reportedly set at £45million. 

Partey played regularly in the Champions League and LaLiga for Atleti, winning the Europa League and Super Cup during his time with Diego Simeone's side. 

The signing of the 27-year-old is seen as somewhat of a coup for Arsenal, though Arteta acknowledges the new recruit will be under pressure to make an immediate impact.

"Probably [the expectations will be high], there is a lot of expectations but we have to give always time players to adapt," he said of Partey, who averaged 2.4 tackles, 1.7 interceptions 7.9 recoveries per game in LaLiga last season.  

"LaLiga and the Premier League are completely different, the style of play of Atletico Madrid and ours, there are some big differences there as well.  

"What isn't in question is the quality of the player, the level he's been playing at for the last five or six years and that obviously will be a big help.  

"He has the support of all the coaching staff, the players and fans. I think that adaptation will be quick."

Arteta said the signing of Partey represented an important one for a squad that is a mixture of young talent and players in the latter stages of their careers. 

"Well, we need a balance between a lot of young players we have in some breakthrough development phases, and others in the peak or twilight of their career," he said during a media conference.

"We believe he was the right recruitment for us in terms of age, in terms of history, his career, where he's been educated, the amount of experience he has, the quality he has to adapt to our game and this very competitive league we are involved in. 

"And also because of the numbers, we were very short in midfield, we needed to strengthen there." 

Arteta also stated the flexibility of Partey to play several roles in midfield was a big influence in Arsenal's pursuit. 

"I think he's going to give us more versatility in our way of playing, he can play in two or three different positions as well when we're able to change formations, or game plans against certain opponents," he said.  

"I think he'll give us something we don't have in the team." 

Speaking at a news conference previewing Arsenal's trip to Manchester City, Arteta explained why Mesut Ozil was left out of the Gunners' Europa League squad. 

Ozil turned 32 this week, the same age as team-mate Sokratis Papastathopoulos who was also omitted. 

Arteta said he spoke to both players, whose futures appear to lie away from north London, about his decision but insists their age had little to do with it. 

"I spoke to them, I wanted to tell them face to face before releasing the squad and I explained my reasons why, the numbers we had," he said. 

"It was really difficult for me to tell them that. We just had restrictions, the rules. [I said to] respect the decision, train in the best possible way, help the team how they can and see in December. 

"I don't think age is the big concern. When you are young and you have to accept a decision like that it's really tough, because you want to see your future building and evolving and it's a big stone in your way.  

"It's about how you react to disappointment, try to look at overall picture and make the right decision, that's all." 

Mikel Arteta said it was a "really difficult decision" to leave Mesut Ozil out of Arsenal's Europa League squad, as he welcomed the "buzz" created by the signing of Thomas Partey.

Ozil has been outcast under Gunners boss Arteta this season and the Germany World Cup winner's long-term future was cast into further doubt when he failed to make their European party.

It remains to be seen if Ozil, who turned 32 on Thursday, will be included in Arsenal's 25-man squad list for the Premier League, which clubs have until October 20 to submit.

Asked about the decision to leave the midfielder out of the Europa League selection, Arteta said: "Well he wasn't the only one not in the squad.

"It was a really difficult decision for me to make because to leave players out of the squad at that level when they know they cannot get involved is really tough.

"I don't like it at all but the decision has to be made because we exceeded the amount of foreign players [we can include] and unfortunately we had to make that decision."

Ozil has been in steady decline since providing 19 assists and creating 28 big chances in 35 Premier League outings during the 2015-16 season, dipping to nine, eight, two and two in terms of assists in the following four campaigns.

Arsene Wenger was the man to bring Ozil to the Emirates Stadium from Real Madrid and this week described Ozil's situation as a "waste", while he told talkSPORT on Thursday: "Mesut Ozil is a great player and a creative player.

"But you have to balance the team because on the defensive side of it, it is not his strength. Mikel Arteta has gone for a team with counter-pressing and who play high up, and everybody has to work hard so that is a bit of handicap for him.

"But he is not a bad character – he is a good guy. It just depends what kind of football you want to play."

Asked about Wenger's comments, Arteta replied: "I think you have to try and find a way to fit every player with their qualities - this is our job and our responsibility with the players you have to manage."

While Ozil is on the outside looking in, Partey arrived from Atletico Madrid on transfer deadline day after the Gunners paid his reported £45million release clause.

The Ghana international adds quality to Arsenal's midfield and Arteta is excited by his addition, even if there were a few nervy moments waiting for the deal to be completed.

"There is a buzz around the place, the fans are really happy. I've seen some positive reactions after we brought him," he said.

"It's the same with the team, same with the staff, he's a player we have rated for a long time and we have managed to bring him I think he's going to be a really important addition to the team.

"Up to the last minutes it's always a risk - a lot of things happened at the same time. There's a lot of paperwork to do, so it was a challenge to do it in 24 hours. In the end we managed to do it."

Arteta, who said he hopes Atletico can "respect" Arsenal opting to pay Partey's release clause, accepts there may be a period of adaption required.

"I think it's something individual, depending on many factors - how they settle here in the city with their families, whether they speak the language or not, whether their qualities fit the team or Premier League.

"You see some adapting very quickly, others need more time," he added.

This weekend sees Arteta once again come up against Manchester City, where he spent four years as assistant to Pep Guardiola.

Talks over a new deal for Guardiola, whose contract expires at the end of the season, have reportedly not yet begun.

Asked if that was a surprise, Arteta replied at his pre-match news conference: "I don't know - it's up to him. The last time I heard an interview he was really happy there, talking about the future, the signings they have done recently. I want to see him happy."

Mesut Ozil has been frozen out at Arsenal and former manager Arsene Wenger described the situation as "a waste" for the midfielder and the club.

The German playmaker, now 31, joined in a then club-record deal from Real Madrid seven years ago, with Wenger saying Ozil possessed "all the attributes I look for in an Arsenal player".

But his reputation has nosedived since that reported £42.5million move and Ozil was left out of Mikel Arteta's Europa League squad last week, underlining how isolated he now is at the Gunners.

Wenger, whose 22-year time at the helm ended in 2018, lamented the position Ozil finds himself in and urged the club to reconsider their approach.

"I feel it is a waste for him," Wenger told BBC Sport of Ozil, who is reportedly earning £350,000 a week but has not played this season.

"Firstly because he's in the years where a player of his talent can produce the most. And it's a waste for the club as well because he's a super talent, a creative talent that in the final third can create that killer pass.

"The way football is going at the moment it's quick counter-pressing, quick transitions and everybody plays the same. It's kicked out players like Ozil. Although let's not forget who this guy is: a world champion who has played at Real Madrid.

"He's been the record player of assists, so you have to find a way to get him involved again."

Ozil's decline has been evident in the data behind his Arsenal career, which peaked in the 2015-16 season when he laid on 19 assists and created 28 big chances in 35 Premier League outings.

Only Thierry Henry and Kevin De Bruyne have had more assists in a Premier League season, with 20 each in 2002-03 and 2019-20 respectively.

But the numbers have gone the wrong way since then for Ozil, with dips to nine and then eight assists in 2016-17 and 2017-18, and big chances created sliding to nine and 13 across those same seasons.

Worse was to follow in the 2018-19 campaign, when he had two assists to his name in 24 top-flight appearances, a tally he matched last season from 18 outings.

Although Wenger may not like seeing his one-time star signing slide into obscurity, the Frenchman does rate Arteta.

"He has the ingredients to be a very good manager, a top manager, but many of my former players had these ingredients," he said.

"We have to give them time, let them do their job in the way they want to do it.

"He's intelligent, he has big passion and a strong character. And I believe he's surrounding himself with the right people."

Mesut Ozil has gone from "world class" to cattle class at Arsenal, with his omission from Mikel Arteta's Europa League squad showing how far his star has fallen.

The German playmaker, now 31, joined in a then club-record deal from Real Madrid seven years ago, with Arsene Wenger saying Ozil possessed "all the attributes I look for in an Arsenal player".

The chief executive at the time, Ivan Gazidis, spoke of Ozil being "a world-class player who is one of Europe's brightest young talents".

Yet in those seven years since Ozil arrived in London, he has changed from being an automatic pick to a player the club look to have written off.

The Opta data is damning and shows that Ozil, whose contract expires in 2021, no longer exerts anything like a significant influence on the Gunners team when he plays.

German great to grating presence

Ozil arrived as an established star of the game, a player who was named in the Euro 2012 team of the tournament and one who could hold his own in the Real Madrid midfield.

At around £42.5million, he was a costly investment for Arsenal, but it felt like a statement signing, with Wenger deciding his team needed an injection of world-beating midfield enterprise.

He sparkled fleetingly during his first two seasons, either side of winning the 2014 World Cup with Germany, but then had a stellar 2015-16, having 19 assists and creating 28 'big chances' in 35 Premier League games that term, drastic improvements on his previous modest returns.

Only Thierry Henry and Kevin De Bruyne have had more assists in a Premier League season, with 20 each in 2002-03 and 2019-20 respectively.

Those numbers pointed to Ozil fulfilling the expectations Arsenal had of him, and Wenger's team finished second in the Premier League in that campaign. Ozil was the club's player of the season.

Yet it has been a case of diminishing returns ever since, with dips to nine and then eight assists in 2016-17 and 2017-18, and big chances created sliding to nine and 13 across those same terms.

Ozil signed a big-money new contract in early 2018, reportedly worth £350,000 a week, and his form since has nosedived. Two assists in 24 Premier League games in 2018-19 were followed by just two again last term, when Ozil played 18 matches in the top flight.

His rate of touching the ball in a game (2,963 touches in 35 Premier League games in 2015-16, 1,064 in 18 games in 2019-20) has also fallen away.

Arteta has not used Ozil yet this season, and it must be doubtful whether he will play for Arsenal again.

Europe's elite to Europa League outcast

It came as no surprise when Arteta left Ozil sidelined for Arsenal's Europa League group campaign on Thursday, revealing a 24-player squad without the German's name.

Ozil has enjoyed some special moments with Arsenal in Europe, such as the Champions League hat-trick he scored against Ludogorets in October 2016, and he played a role in the Gunners reaching the 2018-19 Europa League final.

He played 10 games during that Europa League run but scored just once and had only a single assist, with a paltry 25 touches in the opposition penalty area during 652 minutes on the pitch.

In the 4-1 drubbing by Chelsea in the final, Ozil was again a lightweight presence, booed off as he was substituted in the second half and criticised by former Arsenal midfielder Cesc Fabregas.

Arsenal, once Champions League regulars, have become Europa League mainstays during Ozil's time at the club.

Now, for all his unmistakable talent, Ozil cannot convince his manager he should be playing even at Europa League level.

In a week which saw him offer to pay to keep the man inside Arsenal mascot Gunnersaurus in work, Ozil's Arsenal career looks as extinct as the T-Rex.

Mesut Ozil's fall from grace continued on Thursday when he was left out of Arsenal's Europa League squad.

The 2014 World Cup winner was the biggest omission from the 24-man list submitted to UEFA ahead of the group stage, when the Gunners will face Rapid Vienna, Dundalk and Molde.

Ozil, 31, has not been included in any of Arsenal's six squads across the Premier League and EFL Cup in 2020-21, and he has not appeared for the club since March, when leagues and competitions were shut down because of the coronavirus pandemic.

There was little suggestion that Ozil would move ahead of Monday's transfer deadline, though, given his reported £350,000-a-week deal which expires next year.

On Tuesday, the German offered to pay the salary of Arsenal mascot Gunnersaurus after it was reported that the man inside the green suit was to be made redundant as part of their cost-cutting measures.

Neither Sokratis Papastathopoulos nor William Saliba have been included in the Gunners' Europa League squad either.

Sokratis, like Ozil, has not been involved in the early stages of the campaign while Saliba, who only joined up with the Gunners ahead of this season after spending the 2019-20 campaign on loan with Saint-Etienne, was linked with a return to his old club on deadline day.

Saint-Etienne claimed a deal had been agreed to take Saliba back on loan only for the arrangement to fall through at the last moment.

There is also no place in Mikel Arteta's Europa League squad for striker Gabriel Martinelli, though he is unlikely to return from a knee injury until 2021.

Thomas Partey, who joined from Atletico Madrid on Monday, is in the squad.


Arsenal Europa League squad: Bernd Leno, Runar Runarsson, Matt Macey, James Hillson, Dejan Iliev; Hector Bellerin, Gabriel, Rob Holding, Cedric Soares, Shkodran Mustafi, Calum Chambers, Pablo Mari, David Luiz, Sead Kolasinac, Kieran Tierney; Dani Ceballos, Willian, Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Thomas Partey, Mohamed Elneny, Granit Xhaka; Alexandre Lacazette, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Nicolas Pepe.

Inter striker Romelu Lukaku has taken aim at critics who suggested he did not work hard enough in the Manchester United side.

The Belgium international spent two seasons with the Red Devils before leaving for the Nerazzurri last year in a deal worth in the region of €65million.

United's attacking trio of Anthony Martial, Marcus Rashford and Mason Greenwood flourished in Lukaku's absence, while the former Everton man has thrived in Italy, scoring 34 goals in all competitions last season.

He was also named the Europa League player of the season after firing Inter to the final, where his own goal saw them lose 3-2 to Sevilla.

Lukaku's form has made a mockery of some criticism he received during his time in England, where it was sometimes suggested he was too slow and did not put in enough effort to lead the attacking line.

Speaking to the Times, Lukaku says he has proved those people wrong, although he insists the negativity around his performances was outside United rather than within.

"A year ago, when I was in England, I was 'lazy, I didn't run, I didn't do this and that'. Here, they call me the hardest worker in the room," he said. "If you look at me playing here and there, I mean, there are improvements, yeah, but the [same] Rom is still here.

"Stuff happens in football but it's something you need to explain to the next generation of kids, that you need to have full control over your destiny. Make sure when you go somewhere that every piece of the puzzle has to be right. Know what I mean? At the time, we saw the outcome, we saw how I did. And if you look at me now you see a different outcome, you see the full person, you see the full potential. You see what I could have been doing in England.

"From the first friendly game when I played against LA Galaxy, from that first game it was always 'Yes, but... Everybody in the club was so nice, from Ed Woodward to the owners, to Matthew Judge [transfer negotiator], to Jose Mourinho, to Ole [Gunnar Solskjaer] and his staff, to everybody in the canteen. They were so nice. But the stuff around it was just too much of a negative spiral for me.

"They will call me slow and I'm like, 'Slow? Me, slow? I cannot keep up with the fast pace game of Man U?' There were too many little things where I thought, 'This is not right'.

"If you call me slow I would not score a goal like I scored the second against Shakhtar Donetsk in the [Europa League] semi-final. If I was slow I would not have got the penalty like I did against Sevilla in the final. That's two years after. Are you going to say me at 27 is faster than I was at 25? That's what I'm trying to say. It's just little things. I was like, 'You know what? Eff this. I'm out.'"

Lukaku says Inter coach Antonio Conte, who tried to sign the player when he was with Juventus and Chelsea, has taken him to "another level".

He also believes the atmosphere within the Inter squad is strong, saying: "When I was in England, it was English players here, foreign French players there, foreign latino players there.

"It's all really like a mix up of the team, but at Inter, it is everybody together. Everybody speaks Italian first of all, so that's a good thing. There is one language. Everybody speaks Italian and everybody mixes at the table."

Lukaku holds no grudges against United, though, and has cautioned them against the panic-buying of a new attacking player given the development of Martial, Rashford and Greenwood.

He said: "I hear a lot of people saying, 'Let's buy another this, let's buy another striker, let's buy that'. If you buy another striker, what are you going to do with Anthony? Anthony is a good player. He's young. He's now being the number nine at a great club. Last year, he scored 23 goals. Give him a full season to confirm what he did last year instead of bringing in someone big to disrupt the chemistry in the dressing room.

"Then you have Mason's transition that is going to happen any time soon from right wing to number nine, and Mason is a killer. Like, I've seen him first-hand. He's got something.

"I remember Rashy came to my house [shortly before the Inter move]. We had dinner. Me, him and his older brother. I said to him, 'When I'm leaving, you're going to be the guy at United'. I'm so proud of him right now."

Romelu Lukaku was named Europa League player of the season on Friday - even though it was the Belgian's own goal that decided the 2019-20 final.

The Inter striker was out of luck in the Cologne showpiece against Sevilla when he deflected in an overhead kick from Diego Carlos in the 74th minute, giving the Spanish side a 3-2 win. 

The former Manchester United man netted seven goals - including a penalty in the final - in five starts and one substitute appearance over the course of the competition.

Lukaku told uefa.com: "I want to congratulate Sevilla personally. They won the competition so I congratulate them on having a great tournament.

"I want to thank Antonio Conte and his staff and everyone at the club - the board, the president - for their trust and for helping me through this season.

"My team-mates have been with me from day one. They're like brothers to me, they're real family members. Every day I come into training with a smile and it's because of them.

"I hope that this year we're going to do much better than we did last year and we're going to have a lot of success together."

AC Milan must navigate a tricky route through the Europa League group stage after surviving a dramatic play-off.

Stefano Pioli's team will face Celtic, a team they have frequently battled with in the Champions League, along with Sparta Prague and French club Lille in Group H.

Milan looked like being eliminated on Thursday until a last-ditch spot-kick in extra-time against Portuguese side Rio Ave gave them a 2-2 draw, and the Rossoneri went on to win 9-8 on penalties after a lengthy shoot-out.

They have been regular foes of Celtic in the Champions League, with the teams drawn to face each other in four seasons from 2004-05 to 2013-14, and Milan also lost to Lille in that competition during the 2006-07 group stage.

A 2-0 setback against the Ligue 1 side did not prevent Milan going on to become European champions in that campaign, but they are fallen giants in Italy who are slowly getting back into shape under Pioli.

Jose Mourinho's Tottenham will tackle Ludogorets, LASK and Royal Antwerp in Group J, with the Portuguese manager looking for a repeat of the Europa League triumph he achieved with Manchester United in the 2016-17 season.

Friday's draw also saw Roma handed tests against Young Boys, CFR Cluj and CSKA Sofia in Group A, while Group F will see Serie A and LaLiga collide, with Napoli and Real Sociedad drawn alongside Dutch outfit AZ and Rijeka of Croatia.

Arsenal, led by Mikel Arteta, will face Austrian side Rapid Vienna, Norwegian outfit Molde and Irish club Dundalk.

Europa League group stage draw:

Group A: Roma, Young Boys, CFR Cluj, CSKA Sofia
Group B: Arsenal, Rapid Vienna, Molde, Dundalk
Group C: Bayer Leverkusen, Slavia Prague, Hapoel Beer Sheva, Nice
Group D: Benfica, Standard Liege, Rangers, Lech Poznan
Group E: PSV, PAOK, Granada, Omonoia
Group F: Napoli, Real Sociedad, AZ, Rijeka
Group G: Braga, Leicester City, AEK, Zorya Luhansk
Group H: Celtic, Sparta Prague, AC Milan, Lille
Group I: Villarreal, Qarabag, Maccabi Tel Aviv, Sivasspor
Group J: Tottenham, Ludogorets, LASK, Royal Antwerp
Group K: CSKA Moscow, Dinamo Zagreb, Feyenoord, Wolfsberg
Group L: Gent, Red Star Belgrade, Hoffenheim, Slovan Liberec

Milan won their first penalty shoot-out in European competition since 2003 after reaching the Europa League group stage in remarkable fashion.

Not since their Champions League final triumph over Juventus at Old Trafford 17 years ago had Milan prevailed on penalties in Europe.

But Milan ended that drought with a dramatic draw and 9-8 shoot-out victory against Rio Ave in Thursday's Europa League play-off, which saw 24 penalties taken.

Penalties were needed after Milan midfielder Hakan Calhanoglu equalised with the final kick of the game in extra time against the Portuguese hosts.

In an incredible shoot-out, Rio Ave had chances to stun Milan and book their spot in the group stage, including Nelson Monte sensationally hitting both posts.

Both goalkeepers also blazed their attempts over the crossbar as every player went around again to take a penalty before Gianluigi Donnarumma eventually came up with the save to send Milan through. 

Stefano Pioli's Milan are unbeaten in 18 matches across all competitions as they prepare for Sunday's Serie A fixture against newly promoted Spezia.

Stefano Pioli was delighted with Milan's thrilling win over Rio Ave after a rollercoaster of emotions in the Europa League play-off.

After 24 penalties in the shoot-out, Milan recorded a 9-8 victory, the encounter in Portugal having finished 2-2 following extra time.

Milan led through Alexis Saelemaekers before Francisco Geraldes equalised, and Rio Ave went ahead in extra time thanks to Gelson.

But Hakan Calhanoglu converted a 122nd-minute spot-kick to force an extraordinary shoot-out after Rio Ave defender Toni Borevkovic was sent off.

Pioli said the emotions of the clash were overwhelming, but he was thrilled to reach the group stage.

"It's difficult to control emotions. We went from the possibility of winning to losing in an instant and vice versa," the Milan head coach told a news conference, via Sky Sport.

"The penalty lottery has given very strong emotions and a great joy for having overcome a difficult opponent. We have reached the first goal of the season and you don't win without suffering."

The likes of Saelemaekers, 21, Matteo Gabbia, 20, and Daniel Maldini, 18, started for Milan.

Pioli, whose side have also won their opening two Serie A games of 2020-21, praised the character of his team.

"We were strong, especially mentally, with a very young team," he said.

"Some were also in their first experience in Europe. I'm very satisfied with the final result."

Milan are in league action again on Sunday, when they host Spezia.

Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho responded to Gareth Southgate in their public jousting over Harry Kane, joking that he will not use the England captain in "one minute of any friendly match" this season. 

England manager Southgate recently hit back at Mourinho after the Spurs head coach urged his counterpart not to overuse Kane in the upcoming international games.

The Three Lions have three fixtures coming up in October, with a friendly against Wales taking place on October 8 before Nations League games against Belgium and Denmark.

Spurs have had a congested start to the 2020-21 season, with their 7-2 Europa League win over Maccabi Haifa on Thursday their seventh game of the campaign already. 

Kane plundered a hat-trick against the Israeli side to book Spurs' place in the Europa League group stages and Mourinho was not in the mood to back down on his stance of how his talismanic forward should be used on international duty.

"His match was a fundamental match for us," he told a media conference. "A match that means a few million pounds and means that we are in a group phase of a competition that we have ambitions for. 

"What I can promise to my friend Steve Holland [England assistant manager] and Gareth is not to be jealous. I can promise that until the end of the season I won't play Harry Kane in one minute of any friendly match."

Spurs were electric in attack at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, with a Giovani Lo Celso brace and goals from Lucas Moura and Dele Alli securing a memorable win.

It was Netherlands international Steven Bergwijn, however, that caught Mourinho's eye with a display full of direct running and incisive passing. 

"The team needs that, playing against a team that was pressing so high and giving space in behind," Mourinho said.

"He was very, very important. He didn't lose the ball. He dropped, he got the ball, he beat people. He was really good. I am sorry for him that he did not score. A very good performance. 

"Physically he is getting better, he is getting sharper. We have incredible options in the attacking positions and we are very happy."

Mourinho faces a quick turnaround now to get his players ready for a Premier League clash with former side Manchester United at Old Trafford on Sunday.

Milan edged their way through to the Europa League group stage with a remarkable 9-8 penalty shoot-out victory over Rio Ave, following on from a dramatic 2-2 draw between the teams on Thursday. 

Without Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who tested positive for coronavirus last week, Milan put in a lacklustre showing in their final qualifying match and looked to be heading out after Gelson Dala put Rio Ave ahead early in extra time. 

However, Hakan Calhanoglu restored parity from the spot with the final kick of the game after Toni Borevkovic's handball, with the defender sent off after receiving a second yellow card. 

Alexis Saelemaekers' effort six minutes into the second half had put Milan in front earlier in the contest, though Francisco Geraldes' thunderous strike cancelled out their lead. 

During a bizarre shoot-out that saw both goalkeepers miss their attempts, Gianluigi Donnarumma eventually came up with the save to send Milan through. 

Tottenham booked their spot in the Europa League group stages after Harry Kane's hat-trick helped them to a thumping 7-2 win over Maccabi Haifa on Thursday.  

Playing their third game in just five days, only Toby Alderweireld and Steven Bergwijn kept their places in the starting XI from the side that beat Chelsea in the EFL Cup on Tuesday. 

Tjaronn Chery's wonderful long-range strike cancelled out Kane's second-minute opener but a Lucas Moura header and two goals from Giovani Lo Celso effectively put the game to bed by half-time.  

Nikita Rukavytsya and Kane exchanged goals from the penalty spot shortly after the interval before the England captain's third, plus a late Dele Alli penalty, ensured Spurs booked their place in Friday's draw. 

Jose Mourinho's men started in blistering fashion, taking the lead after just 92 seconds when an unmarked Kane turned home Ben Davies' cross from four yards.  

The visitors responded superbly to that early setback and grabbed a deserved equaliser after 17 minutes, Chery thundering into Joe Hart's top corner.  

Their joy was short-lived, however, as Lucas rose highest at the near post to flick Bergwijn's corner past Josh Cohen for his second goal of the season three minutes later.  

Lo Celso then scored twice in the space of three minutes before the break, first whipping inside Cohen's right-hand post from 12 yards and then lifting over the beleaguered goalkeeper from close range after being found by Kane.  

Rukavytsya pulled one back for the visitors in the 52nd minute after Matt Doherty was penalised for handling inside the area, although Kane restored Spurs' advantage four minutes later after Ernest Mabouka had been adjudged to have blocked Davies' cross with his arm. 

Kane then completed his hat-trick in the 74th minute, clipping over Cohen after wonderful work down the left from the impressive Bergwijn, before substitute Alli slotted home a stoppage-time penalty after an audacious piece of skill drew a foul from Bogdan Planic.


Rangers secured a spot in the Europa League group stage by winning their play-off against Galatasaray 2-1 at Ibrox on Thursday. 

After a dour opening period in Glasgow, second-half goals from Scott Arfield and James Tavernier ensured Steven Gerrard's team will be involved in Friday's draw. 

Connor Goldson saw Christian Luyindama nod his header over the bar before Borna Barisic volleyed a cross from Ryan Babel behind just as Sofiane Feghouli looked to steal in during a first half of few openings. 

The deadlock was broken in the 52nd minute, though. Alfredo Morelos dummied Tavernier's pass and Ianis Hagi steered the ball in behind for Arfield, who guided a cool finish with the outside of his boot beyond Fatih Ozturk. 

Rangers doubled their lead seven minutes later when Tavernier rose above Martin Linnes at the back post to head home Barisic's deflected cross. 

Younes Belhanda was booked for remonstrating with referee Andris Treimanis after his appeal for a penalty following a tackle from Arfield on the edge of the box was ignored. 

Morelos missed a great chance to improve Rangers' advantage and they were dragged into a tense finale when Marcao's header found a way past Allan McGregor and Ryan Jack in the 87th minute. 

However, Gerrard's men held on to ensure their European adventure will continue.

Odsonne Edouard fired Celtic through to the Europa League group stage as Neil Lennon's Scottish champions earned a 1-0 win at Sarajevo.

The visitors took charge of a tense play-off match in the second half, and Edouard, their former Paris Saint-Germain academy striker, was the man who made the difference.

He scored in the 70th minute after Ryan Christie saw a shot repelled.

It meant that Lennon, whose team's Champions League qualifying hopes were ended by a home defeat to Ferencvaros, avoided the ignominy of Celtic being knocked out of the Europa League, too, before the competition begins in earnest.

Celtic had few sights of goal in the first half, but Ryan Christie sent a 25-yard strike a couple of feet over the bar in the 63rd minute as the Hoops stepped it up.

They went close again five minutes later when a corner from the left reached Hatem Abd Elhamed just beyond the penalty spot, and his volley flew just wide of the right post.

The breakthrough came soon afterwards, Edouard firing into the Sarajevo net after Christie was denied by home goalkeeper Vladan Kovacevic.

Christie drew another save from Kovacevic with a stinging 20-yard shot as Celtic sought a second goal to strengthen their position.

Edouard played in Christie for a further opportunity after a surging run, but the winger could not test Kovacevic, and Jeremie Frimpong sent a shot just wide.

One goal was enough, however, to put Celtic into Friday's draw.

Page 1 of 23
© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.