Skip to main content

Liverpool on brink after Lyon equalizer

Lyon celebrate Lisandro Lopes' injury time equalizer in their 1-1 home draw with Liverpool.
Lyon celebrate Lisandro Lopes' injury time equalizer in their 1-1 home draw with Liverpool.
  • Lyon reach Champions League last 16 after a late 1-1 draw with Liverpool
  • Lisandro Lopes' goal leaves Liverpool on brink of going out of competition
  • Ryan Babel had put English side ahead with a stunning long-range strike
  • Arsenal on verge of qualifying from Group H after superb 4-1 win over AZ

(CNN) -- Lyon scored a last-minute equalizer to secure a 1-1 draw at home to Liverpool, sealing the French side's place in the Champions League last 16 and leaving the 2005 champions on the brink of elimination.

An injury-ravaged Liverpool looked to have claimed a much-needed victory when Dutchman Ryan Babel fired home an unstoppable long-range strike with just seven minutes remaining.

But, in the dying moments, Lisandro Lopes took advantage of some hesitancy in the visiting defence to fire home an equalizer, a goal that sends Lyon into the knockout stages and leaves Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez under even more pressure.

The result means that if Fiorentina defeat Lyon at home in the next round of matches, Liverpool will crash out of the tournament, regardless of what they do in their match at minnows Debrecen.

Lyon have definitely qualified after reaching 10 points and Italian side Fiorentina look favorites to join them in the next round after thumping Debrecen 5-2.

Fiorentina beat the Hungarians 4-3 away in the last round and Wednesday saw another seven-goal thriller in Florence.

Goals from Adrian Mutu and Gergely Rudolf saw the sides level at half-time but Dario Dainelli, Riccardo Montolivo and Marco Marchionni all struck between the 52nd and 61st minutes to take the game away from Debrecen.

Adamo Coulibaly pulled one back before Alberto Gilardino netted the final goal of a frantic second half.

Meanwhile, Arsenal all but secured their place in the last 16 of the competition after taking apart AZ Alkmaar 4-1 in Group H.

The Gunners made it 10 wins from 10 home matches this season with a sparkling display, taking the lead when captain Cesc Fabregas scored from an acute angle in the 25th minute.

Frenchman Samir Nasri added a second before half-time, striding through the visiting defence to score his first goal since returning from a broken leg.

Fabregas added his second goal, and Arsenal's third, early in the second half, and Abou Diaby added a fourth after a superb flowing move that involved Eduardo and Andrey Arshavin.

Jeremain Lens pulled a late goal back for the Dutch side, but they remain bottom of the group and look destined to bow out.

Arsenal need at least a point to seal qualification after Standard Liege beat Olympiacos 2-0 in Belgium.

Goals in either half from Dieudonne Mbokani and Milan Jovanovic earned the home side their first win in the group and and moved them two points behind their second-placed Greek opponents with two matches still remaining.