Liverpool and Juventus opened their Europa League soccer qualifying campaigns with victories to give new coaches winning starts in their first competitive games.
David Ngog scored twice to give Roy Hodgson’s Liverpool a 2-0 win at Macedonia’s FK Rabotnicki last night. Amauri’s double gave Juve the same result at Ireland’s Shamrock Rovers as Luigi Delneri took charge of his first competitive game.
Liverpool and Juventus had to enter the third qualifying round of Europe’s second-tier club tournament, which they have won a record three times, after finishing seventh in their respective domestic leagues last season.
Maritimo of Portugal had the biggest win last night with a club-record 8-2 victory at home to Welsh team Bangor City.
The return matches are scheduled Aug. 3-5 with the 35 winners of the two-game series advancing to playoffs, where they will be joined in the Aug. 6 draw by teams including FC Porto and Manchester City.