Nigerian duo David Okereke and Emmanuel Dennis will continue their European campaign in the Europa League after Club Brugge could only draw at Lazio as their Champions League dreams ended on Tuesday.
Brugge needed a win at the Stadio Olimpico to leapfrog Lazio and join Group C winners Borussia Dortmund in the last 16 but despite a valiant try, the Belgian side who were reduced to ten men in the first half fell just short with the Italians progressing at their expense.
With both Nigerians starting on the bench, the home side were quick off the block taking the lead after 12 minutes as Joaquin Correa fired home but Brugge responded almost immediately with Ruud Vormer restoring parity three minutes later.
Ciro Immobile restored Lazio’s lead from the spot and the hosts seemed poised for the win after Edward Sobol received a second yellow before half time but Hans Vanaken scored with 15 minutes left to ensure a tense finish and although Okereke was thrown on late on to find a winner, Lazio stayed strong to ward off the visitors.
Meanwhile, in the group’s other game, Dortmund rallied from going behind to score twice in the second half to beat Zenit St. Petersburg to win the group.
Lukasz Piszczek and Axel Witsel scored ten minutes apart to cancel out Sebastian Druissi’s first half opener.