Champions League

Eredivisie champions through after dramatic finale

PSV clinched a place in the knockout stages of the Champions League for the first time since the 2006/07 season after coming from a goal down to defeat CSKA Moscow 2-1 at the Philips Stadion on Tuesday.

Goals from Luuk de Jong and Davy Propper cancelled out a Sergei Ignashevich’s penalty in dramatic finish, meaning Phillip Cocu’s side secured second place in Group B.

Having looked like they were going out of Europe altogether when they trailed in the second half, PSV staged a rousing comeback to score twice in the space of seven minutes to turn the game on its head.


The result means the Dutch side finish behind Wolfsburg, whose 3-2 win over Manchester United forced the Premier League giants to settle for a place in the Europa League.

The result also saw CSKA finish bottom of their Champions League group for a third season running, while their winless run stretches to seven matches in all competitions.

With their fans creating a superb atmosphere prior to kick-off, the home side started brightly.

Jurgen Locadia was a serious threat down the left, and CSKA’s high defensive line gave the winger hope of getting in behind.

However, for all their bluster, PSV had only one serious chance in the first half. De Jong wasted it, heading Hector Moreno’s cross from the left straight at goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev.

CSKA looked just as likely to score at the other end, although they had less possession in the first 45 minutes.

Ahmed Musa had a shot from a tight angle that hit the side netting in the 10th minute, while PSV goalkeeper Jeroen Zoet acrobatically turned away a free-kick from the left foot of Zoran Tosic.

Jeffrey Bruma curled a free-kick over the bar for PSV after the break, but the match failed to carry the same intensity in the second half.

That was until a needless challenge from Andres Guardado gave away a penalty. Tosic invited the tackle before falling theatrically, allowing Ignashevich to break the deadlock from the spot.

PSV were in danger of finishing at the foot of the table at that stage, but captain De Jong’s goal – neatly taken after a header into the area had found him onside – suddenly shook up the standings again, and meant Akinfeev has failed to keep a clean sheet for the 37th match in succession.

Any late nerves for the home side were released when Propper rammed home the winner.

His shot from outside the box flew past Akinfeev and avenged a 3-2 defeat to CSKA in the reverse fixture. More importantly, it also clinched PSV’s progress to the last 16.

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