Armenia’s champion FC Ararat-Armenia competed with Luxembourg’s champion and cup winner FC Dudelange in the first match of the qualifying play-off of the UEFA Europa League at Republican Stadium after Vazgen Sargsyan in Yerevan.
Vardan Minasyan’s team beat Dudelange 2-1.
At the 22nd minute, Dutch striker Mailson Lima kicked the ball to the gate of the opponent with a head strike following a pass from Bulgarian midfielder Georgy Pashov.
In the second half, Dudelange managed to restore the balance. At the 68th minute, Dudelange’s midfielder Danel Sinani kicked the ball towards FC Ararat-Armenia’s Russian goalkeeper Dmitry Abakumov from a distance and scored a goal.
At the 79th minute, the pole of the gate saved Dudelange’s players from the goal that FC Ararat-Armenia was about to score after a kick by Dutch midfielder Furgel Narsingh.
At the added third minute, Estonian midfielder Ilya Antonov scored the triumphant goal of FC Ararat-Armenia, and the pass for a goal was made by Nigerian striker Luis Ogana.
The return match in Luxembourg will take place on August 29 and will kick off at 10 p.m. Yerevan time.
Armenia’s team has made it to the play-off of the UEFA Europa League for the first time in the history of Armenian football. After the two matches in the previous two qualifying stages of the Europa League, FC Ararat-Armenia won Gibraltar’s champion Lincoln (2-0, 2-1) and Georgia’s champion Saburtalo (1-2, 2-0). Vardan Minasyan’s team didn’t win Sweden’s champion AIK (2-1, 1-3) in the first qualifying stage of the UEFA Champions League.
UEFA Europa League, final qualifying stage, first match
FC Ararat-Armenia – Dudelange: 2-1
Mailson Lima, 22, Ilya Antonov, 90+3 – Danel Sinani, 68
Photos by Emma Asatryan