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Europa League: Olivier Giroud’s stunner helps Chelsea hold Vidi to 2-2 draw

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Olivier Giroud scored a late stunner as Chelsea bounced back from a goal down to hold Vidi to a 2-2 draw in their final Group L encounter in the Europa League on Thursday.

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Chelsea topped the group while Belarusian side Bate finished second to progress into the Knockout stages.

Brazilian winger Willian opened the scoring for Chelsea with a wonderful free-kick in the 30th minute after Paulo Vinicius had fouled him outside the penalty box.

But the lead lasted for just two minutes before young centre-back Ethan Ampadu redirected a corner into his net. Both sides went into the break levelled at 1-1.

Loic Nego then put Bate ahead with a spectacular volley in the 56th minute giving the Belarusian side an early taste of an improbable victory. But substitute Giroud netted home a superb free-kick to secure the draw and help Chelsea finish the group stage unbeaten. They finished with 16 points from six matches.

Elsewhere Nikolai Sihnevich scored a first-half brace as Bate thrashed PAOK 3-1 to become the second team to progress from Group L.

“We made a lot of mistakes from the tactical point of view,” Chelsea coach Maurizio Sarri was quoted as saying by news agency AFP following the 2-2 draw

“I am happy with the character and reaction from the second goal. From the tactical point of view, we made a lot of mistakes.”

Also read: Bengaluru FC makes it four wins in four matches against ATK

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