LONDON: Goals from Daniel Sturridge and Roberto Firmino gave Liverpool a 2-0 advantage after the first leg of their Europa League last-16 tie with arch-rivals Manchester United.
Sturridge struck from the penalty spot after 20 minutes at Anfield and Firmino rewarded Liverpool for their dominance with a second 17 minutes from time.
United had just one shot on target all night and were indebted to goalkeeper David de Gea for keeping them in the tie with some fine saves.
Marco Reus struck twice for the dominant German side in the second after after Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang – who earlier had an effort disallowed – headed a 30th-minute opener.
Holders Sevilla played out a goalless draw at Basle after having Steven Nzonzi sent off three minutes from time for a second bookable offence.
The Spanish side had dominated the second half, with Basle goalkeeper Tomas Vaclik making good saves to deny Nzonzi, Kevin Gameiro and Yevhen Konoplyanka.
Athletic Bilbao‘s Raul Garcia headed the only goal of a near-farcical first leg of their all-Spanish tie with Valencia.
Garcia glanced in from a free-kick after 20 minutes to give Bilbao the least they deserved from a match played in torrential rain and on a saturated pitch at the Estadio de San Mames.
Shakhtar Donetsk claimed a 3-1 win over Anderlecht in Lviv. Two goals in the space of three minutes from Taison and Olexandr Kucher gave the Ukrainian side the lead during a first half in which they also hit the post through Eduardo.
Anderlecht rallied after the break and pulled one back through Frank Acheampong but Eduardo’s 79th-minute effort ensured a healthy lead for Shakhtar.
Mehmet Topal scored an 82nd-minute winning goal as Fenerbahce beat Braga 1-0 in Istanbul. The decisive strike came just moments after Fenerbahce goalkeeper Volkan Demirel made a fine save to deny Josue at the other end.