Red Star beat Cologne to enter Europa League knockouts

Belgrade, Dec 8 (IANS) Serbian Red Star triumphed over German club Cologne 1-0 to qualify for the round of 32 of the UEFA Europa League here.

Although throughout the match of the 6th and final round of the group stage, the German team enjoyed more ball possession and had more attempts on goal, yet in the 22nd minute, Slavoljub Srnic made use of a great cross from Milan Rodic and scored from some 10 meters away from the goal bringing the home team in the lead, reports Xinhua news agency.

Both teams had several good chances but none of them was turned into a goal.

The decisive match was played at Rajko Mitic stadium in Belgrade in front of 52,000 fans of which 5,000 came from Germany to support Cologne on Thursday.

With the victory, Red Star ended up second in Group H behind Arsenal, and qualified among the best 32 teams that will compete in the knockout stage.

Red Star is the second Serbian team that qualified for the knockout stage of the competition this season, after Partizan also succeeded to rank 2nd in Group B.

The UEFA Europa League round of 32 draw will take place on Monday, while the first matches will be played in February 2018

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