Four Bundesliga teams started in the knockout stage of 32 and after today's second leg only one moved through to the round of 16. VFB Stuttgart score two unanswered goals against Genk to take the aggregate 3-1. The remaining Bundesliga clubs teams lost.
With four German sides in the round of 32, none of the clubs started leg two with clean sheets from their leg one matches. Nevertheless, all had an opportunity to get a result that would put them through to the round of 16. In the end only VFB Stuttgart made the cut.
Stuttgart topped Genk 2-0 with goals by Boka in the 45th and Gentner in the 58th minute, which gave the team an aggregate win of 3-1. Gladbach lost to Lazio Rome 2-0 for an aggregate loss of 5-3, Leverkusen went down in defeat to Benfica Lisbon for a 3-1 aggregate defeat, while Hannover 96 battled to 1-1 draw, which unfortunately fell short due to a 4-2 aggregate loss.
The irony of the eliminations is that Leverkusen is third in the Bundesliga, while Hannover is eighth, Gladbach tenth and VFB Stuttgart is in the lower half of the Bundesliga table in 12th place. While Leverkusen has faired well in domestic competition with the likes of Kiessling, Schuerrle and Castro, on the international scene they have not done that well.
KRC Genk vs VFB Stuttgart 0-2 aggregate 1-3
Both teams played offensive football, without creating dangerous scoring opportunities. The Belgian side eventually pulled back into a defensive and this resulted in the 1:0 lead for Stuttgart, just prior to the half. Arthur Boka's deflection landed in the net for the 1-0 lead. In the second half Genk pressed to get the equalizer, but were never threatening to the Stuttgart defense. Christian Gentner solidified Stuttgart's victory in the 58th minute assuring the Stuttgart win and qualification for the round of 16. Stuttgart hosts Lazio on March 7 in the first leg.
Lazio Rome vs Borussia MoenchenGladbach 2-0 aggregate 5-3
Gladbach, which has been inconsistent this season, had another disappointing performance in today's encounter with Lazio. As a result Lazio was able to capitalize on Gladbach's errors, while few ideas came from the Gladbach side to offensively threaten the Italians. An attempt near the end phase of the match to press offensively remained without result. Lazio won hands down and will meet VFB Stuttgart on Mar 7.
Benfica Lisbon vs Bayer Leverkusen 2-1 aggregate 3-1
Leverkusen started this match with one goal deficit from leg one. Given Leverkusen's good domestic performance, the deficit should not have created major problems. Games have a way of taking on a form of their own. While Bayer Leverkusen played strong at the beginning of the match, Benfica found its game rhythm earlier, but Leverkusen started to dominate the match. While Leverkusen had the better overall half, with Kiesslng and Schuerrle hitting the posts, it was Lisbon that opened the scoring in the 60th minute, when John got the go ahead goal. Schuerrle after an offside goal and several close calls, got the equalizer in the 75th minute. Mattic moved the Portuguese side ahead in the 77th minute. Despite efforts by Leverkusen and substituting Milik for a midfielder, the side was unable to get an equalizer. In the end Benfica was the better side and moves to the round of 16. Benfica hosts Bordeaux on March 7.
Hannover 96 vs FC Anzhi 1-1 aggregate 2-4
Hannover started the match with a 3-1 deficit from leg one and was the side that was likely to be eliminated. In spite of the deficit, Hannover started pressure on Anzhi right from the start, realizing that a minimum of three goals were needed to push through to the next round. Anzhi concentrated on counter attacks, hoping that the Hannover side could be overwhelmed. Hannover took control of the match in the second half. Defensively Anzhi was well positioned, but Sergio da Silva Pinto scored the go ahead goal for Hannover in the 70th minute. With only 20 minutes remaining, Hannover had little opportunity to get two more goals and in the end Anzhi moves to the round of 16. Anzhi plays Newcastle on Mar 7.
While only one German club remains in the Europa League, three English teams will move to the round of 16. Newcastle, Tottenham and Chelsea have qualified to move through to the next round. The remaining scores of today's matches can be viewed on the UEFA website.