SEVILLE, Spain (AP)Sevilla couldn’t avoid another early elimination despite beating Copenhagen 3-0 to earn its first Champions League win of the season on Tuesday.
The victory temporarily gave Sevilla some hope, but a draw between Borussia Dortmund and Manchester City in Germany later Tuesday meant the Spanish club missed out on the knockout stage for a second consecutive season. It needed Dortmund to lose to Man City to retain a chance of advancing.
Copenhagen was eliminated and will finish last in Group G regardless of the last-round results. The Danish side twice hit the woodwork against Sevilla but remained the only team yet to score after five matches. It hasn’t scored in its last nine Champions League games.
Youssef En-Nesyri, Isco Alarcon and Gonzalo Montiel scored second-half goals for Sevilla, which has at least secured third place and a berth in the Europa League, the second-tier European competition that it won six times.
En-Nesyri opened the scoring in the 61st, Isco added to the lead with a curling shot from outside the area in the 88th and Montiel sealed the victory from close range two minutes into stoppage time.
”The Champions League is brutal and if you don’t take your chances you end up taking the ball out of your own net,” Copenhagen goalkeeper Kamil Grabara said. ”That is the reality of the Champions League.”
Copenhagen defender David Khocholava was sent off for a hard foul late in stoppage time.
En-Nesyri had to leave the match nine minutes after scoring his goal because of an injury.
”He had an issue with his hamstring,” Sevilla coach Jorge Sampaoli said. ”We don’t know how serious it is.”
Sevilla was winless in seven games at home in all competitions this season and had lost five of its last seven Champions League games at its Ramon Sanchez-Pizjuan Stadium.
”These days it’s hard to win matches without suffering,” said Isco, who scored for the first time since joining Sevilla this season. ”We are glad to get the first victory at home. We really wanted to win in front of our fans.”
Last season, Sevilla didn’t get through a relatively easy group that included RB Salzburg, Wolfsburg and Lille. It reached the round of 16 in 2020-21, being eliminated by Dortmund.
Sevilla and Copenhagen entered the match tied on two points each. Dortmund reached eight points, while Man City was with 11 points.
The Spanish club had won only one of its last nine matches in all competitions. It replaced coach Julen Lopetegui with Jorge Sampaoli after the team’s 4-0 home loss to Dortmund earlier this month. It had won only once in five matches in all competitions since then, at Mallorca in the Spanish league.
Copenhagen, which came into the Sevilla game depleted by injuries, also got a new coach – Jacob Neestrup – since its scoreless draw against the Spanish club at home more than 40 days ago.
”I’m so disappointed that we got in so many good positions in the opposition box in the first half without finishing one,” Neestrup said. ”I think that’s too poor. We carved out some quite big chances.”
This was Sevilla’s eighth Champions League campaign and third in a row. It reached the quarterfinals in 2017-18, being eliminated by Bayern Munich.
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