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Europa League Matchday 2 preview: Group A-F

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The second round of Europa League group stage matches takes place on Thursday with all 48 teams in action. We start our preview for Matchday 2 by looking at Group A-F.

Group A: Feyenoord 3p (Netherlands), Fenerbahce 1p (Turkey),  Zorya Luhansk 1p (Ukraine), Manchester United 0p (England).

Manchester United suffered a 1-0 defeat away to Feyenoord in their opening match after a goal by Tonny Trindade in the second half. It was not the type of start that the pre-tournament favorites wanted, and the Red Devils will be looking to grab their first win of the tournament when they take on Zorya Luhansk at Old Trafford. The Ukrainians got a 1-1 draw at home to Turkish side Fenerbahce in their opening match as Simon Kjaer scored a late equalizer for the Turks deep into stoppage time. Fenerbahce takes on Feyenoord at the Sukru Saracoglu Stadium in Istanbul.

Group B: APOEL 3p (Cyprus), Olympiacos 3p (Greece), Astana 0p (Kazakhstan), Young Boys 0p (Switzerland).

Astana suffered a 2-1 defeat to APOEL in their opening match after goals by Vinicius and Igor De Camargo. They will go up against Young Boys at Astana Arena hoping to get their first points of the tournament. Young Boys also suffered defeat in their opening match, falling 1-0 to Greek side Olympiacos after a goal by veteran Esteban Cambiasso. The Greeks, who are coming off a 1-0 loss to AEL in the Greek Super League, take on APOEL at the Georgios Karaiskakis Stadium near Athens in a battle for top spot in the Group B standings.

Group C: Anderlecht 3p (Belgium), Saint-Etienne 1p (France), Mainz 1p (Germany), Gabala 0p (Azerbaijan).

Belgian side Anderlecht opened up the tournament with a 3-1 win at home to Gabala. Goals by Lukasz Teodorczyk and Diego Capel, along with an own goal by Gabala defender Rafael Santos secured the three points for Anderlecht. They will now head to France to take on Saint-Etienne at the Stade Geoffroy Guichard. The Frenchmen got a 1-1 draw away to Mainz in the opening game after a late equalizer by Robert Beric. Mainz makes the long journey to northern Azerbaijan and Gabala City Stadium. The Germans sit in 8th place in the Bundesliga with seven points in five matches, while Gabala sits top of the table in the Azerbaijan Premier League after six games with five win and a draw.

Group D: Zenit Saint Petersburg 3p (Russia), Dundalk 1p (Ireland), AZ Alkmaar 1p (Netherlands), Maccabi Tel Aviv 0p (Israel).

Zenit Saint Petersburg got off to a good start in the group stage, beating Maccabi Tel Aviv 4-3 in a real thriller. The Russians came back from a 3-0 deficit after scoring four goals in the final 14 minutes of the game, with Luka Djordjevic grabbing the game-winning goal in stoppage time. Zenit will host AZ Alkmaar at the Petrovsky Stadium. The Dutch side were held to a 1-1 draw against Irish side Dundalk in the first round, after conceding a late goal by Ciaran Kilduff. Dundalk will host Maccabi Tel Aviv at the Tallaght Stadium.

Group E: Austria Wien 3p (Austria), AS Roma 1p (Italy), Viktoria Plzen 1p (Czech Republic), Astra Giurgiu 0p (Romania).

Austria Wien took a 3-2 win on the road against Astra Giurgiu in their opening match of the tournament. The Austrians will host Viktoria Plzen at the Ernst Happel Stadion in Vienna on Thursday. Viktoria Plzen got a 1-1 draw at home against Serie A side AS Roma. The Italians will welcome Astra Giurgiu to the Stadio Olimpico in Rome. Roma is coming off a 3-1 defeat to Torino in the league, and they currently sit in fourth place in the Serie A standings.

Group F: Sassuolo 3p (Italy), Rapid Wien 3p (Austria), KRC Genk 0p (Belgium), Athletic Bilbao (Spain).

Sassuolo started off their first ever Europa League campaign with a 3-0 win over La Liga side Athletic Bilbao after goals by Pol Lirola, Gregoire Defrel and Matteo Politano. The Black and Greens have won three out of their last four matches in all competitions. They will take on Belgian side Genk in the next fixture. Genk suffered a 3-2 loss to Rapid Wien, with an own goal by Genk centre back Omar Colley becoming the game winner for the Austrians. Rapid will head to San Mames to take on Bilbao.

Europa League Matchday 2 preview: Group A-F

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