Feb. 15 (Bloomberg) -- Besiktas and Olympiacos won away games to start the round of 32 in soccer’s Europa League.
Tomas Sivok and Simao scored as Besiktas defeated 10-man Braga 2-0 last night, while David Fuster got the goal and reserve goalkeeper Roy Carroll stopped a penalty kick with his first touch in Olympiacos’s 1-0 win over Rubin Kazan.
“It was a dream start for me,” former Manchester United goalie Carroll, who joined the Greek champion last month, said on UEFA’s website. “I wasn’t expecting to come on and save a penalty but that’s what I had to do.”
Besiktas and Olympiacos will host the return matches in the two-game series on Feb. 23. The remaining 14 matchups in the round start tomorrow, when Porto resumes its title defense against Premier League leader Manchester City.
Besiktas scored in each half in Portugal to put Braga, last season’s runner-up, on the brink of elimination from Europe’s second-tier club competition.
Braga’s Helder Barbosa was sent off in the 29th minute for a second yellow card and Sivok put the visiting team ahead eight minutes later by heading in Manuel Fernandes’s corner kick.
Simao clinched the Turkish club’s victory in the 58th minute when he ran onto a ball from Fernandes and shot past goalkeeper Joaquim Silva.
In Moscow, Olympiacos took the lead in the 71st minute when Fuster scored with a shot that deflected off Bebras Natcho, who was positioned on the goal line.
Olympiacos was reduced to 10 men two minutes later as goalkeeper Balazs Megyeri was red-carded for taking down Gokdeniz Karadeniz in the area. Carroll then came on and dived to save Natcho’s penalty to preserve his team’s one-goal lead ahead of the return game in Greece.
--Editors: Dan Baynes, Dex McLuskey
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