AC Milan defeat Rio Ave 9-8 on penalties in Europa League

AC Milan defeat Rio Ave 9-8 on penalties in Europa League

- AC Milan scraped through into the Europa League qualifying round following a shootout win over Rio Ave

- The Serie A club and the Primeira Liga club played a 2-2 draw after extra time and went straight into penalties

- The Rossoneri eventually won the match despite handing their opponents the opportunity to win the spot-kicks on three occasions

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AC Milan qualified into the group stages of the Europa League following their dramatic 24-penalty shootout win away at Rio Ave.

Milan returned to European football after finishing sixth in the Serie A last season and had to play the qualifying rounds before booking a ticket into the group phase.

Stefano Pioli's side were without Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who tested positive for coronavirus took the lead through Alexis Saelemaekers five minutes after the restart.

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AC Milan defeat Rio Ave 9-8 on penalties in Europa League

AC Milan defeat Rio Ave 9-8 on penalties in Europa League. Photo Credit: Getty Images
Source: Getty Images

However, Chico Geraldes equalized for the Portuguese side in the 72nd minute as the match went into extra time.

Gelson put Rio Ave ahead in the 91st minute but Milan were awarded a penalty and scored by Hakan Calhanogluin in the 122nd minute to level the score at 2-2 and went into penalties.

Every player from each team participated in the shootout as both goalkeepers missed their respective spot-kicks.

Rio Ave had three opportunities in winning the match at sudden-death but wasted their chances as Milan won the match by 9-8.

Gianluigi Donnarumma made a fantastic save to send the Rossoneri into the money-spinning stage of the competition.

Milan will now know their opponents in the group stages when the Europa League draws are being conducted on Friday, October 2, 2020.

AC Milan had failed to qualify for the group stages last season and in the previous campaign, they were knocked out by finalists Arsenal in the round of 16.

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Meanwhile, Legit.ng had earlier reported that AC Milan who are Italian Serie A campaigners have confirmed that star striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic has contracted the deadly Coronavirus and has been ordered to go into isolation.

The announcement came hours before the AC Milan's Europa League third qualifying round against Norwegian club FK Bodo/Glimt.

Milan added that they have communicated the latest development to the appropriate authorities for important procedures to be taken.

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Source: Legit

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