Liverpool made a triumphant return to the Europa League on Thursday, securing another impressive 3-1 comeback victory, this time against the Austrian club LASK in Linz.
In the 63rd minute, Luis Díaz displayed clinical precision as he found the back of the net, giving the visiting team the lead. This remarkable goal came after he received a precise low cross from midfielder Ryan Gravenberch, who was making his first start for Liverpool since his summer transfer from Bayern Munich.
Mohamed Salah, coming off the bench, sealed the second-half comeback with a goal in the 88th minute.
Liverpool found themselves trailing early when Florian Flecker scored from a corner kick in the 14th minute, beating backup goalkeeper Caoimhin Kelleher.
The visitors leveled the score when Darwin Núñez converted a penalty kick just 11 minutes into the second half, following a foul on Díaz by Philipp Ziereis.
Liverpool manager Jürgen Klopp made 11 changes to his starting lineup from the previous 3-1 comeback victory over Wolverhampton in the English Premier League.
This marked Liverpool’s return to the second-tier European competition for the first time since their 3-1 loss to Sevilla in the 2016 final in Basel during Klopp’s inaugural season at Anfield.
In another Group E match, Union Saint-Gilloise and Toulouse played to a 1-1 draw.
The reigning Europe Conference League champions, West Ham, also had to recover from a one-goal deficit to defeat the Serbian team TSC Bačka Topola 3-1 at London Stadium in Group A.
Their comeback began with an own goal by Nemanja Petrović in the 66th minute. Summer signing Mohammed Kudus headed home the second goal just four minutes later in his first start for West Ham, while substitute Tomáš Souček sealed the victory with the third goal.
Brighton’s debut in European competition suffered a setback as they lost 3-2 at home to AEK Athens in Group B. Substitute Ezequiel Ponce scored the winning goal six minutes from time.
Forward João Pedro scored from the penalty spot twice for Brighton, marking the club’s first-ever European appearance after finishing sixth in the English Premier League last season.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang secured a 3-3 draw for Marseille against Ajax with his second goal in the 78th minute, in a clash between two former Champions League winners. Marseille was without coach Marcelino, who stepped down just a few games into his tenure.
In Group G, Romelu Lukaku scored the decisive second-half goal in a 2-1 victory for last year’s runner-up Roma over Sheriff in Tiraspol. This marked Lukaku’s second goal since joining Roma from Chelsea.
Substitute midfielder Leandro Paredes opened the scoring for Roma with a deflected free kick in first-half stoppage time, only to see Cristian Tovar equalize in the second half. Under the guidance of coach Jose Mourinho, Roma is aiming for its third consecutive European final.
Also in Group G, Slavia Prague secured three points with a 2-0 victory over Servette in Geneva.
Atalanta relied on second-half goals from forward Charles De Ketelaere and substitute Éderson to claim a 2-0 victory over the newcomer Raków Czestochowa in Group D, while Rangers defeated Real Betis 1-0 in Group C.
In Group F, Ludovic Blas scored the competition’s first goal of the season in the second minute, helping Rennes to a 3-0 victory over Maccabi Haifa. In the same group, Panathinaikos defeated Villarreal, the 2021 Europa League champion, with a score of 2-0.
In Group H, Leverkusen dominated Sweden’s newcomer Häcken, with Florian Wirtz, Aminde Adli, Victor Boniface, and substitute Jonas Hofmann each contributing a goal in a resounding 4-0 victory.
EUROPA CONFERENCE LEAGUE
In Warsaw, Legia secured a 3-2 victory over Aston Villa, marking the English team’s return to the group stage of a European competition for the first time since the 2008-09 season. Albanian forward Ernest Muçi was the star of the match, scoring two goals in the second half.
The 1982 European Cup winners, Aston Villa, had to mount comebacks twice in the first half of the Group E game. After Pawel Wszolek gave the hosts an early lead in the third minute, Villa’s forward Jhon Duran swiftly headed in an equalizer just three minutes later. Muçi then put Legia ahead 2-1 in the 26th minute with his first goal, while defender Lucas Digne later leveled the score at 2-2.
In another match within the same group, Zrinjski made a triumphant debut for a Bosnian club in European competitions, defeating Alkmaar 4-3.
Over in Group F, last year’s runner-up Fiorentina kicked off their campaign with a 2-2 draw against Genk in Belgium. Defender Luca Ranieri scored his first two goals for the Italian team with headers.
In Group A, KÍ Klaksvík, the first team from the Faeroe Islands to reach the group stage of a European competition, suffered a 2-1 loss to Slovan Bratislava.
Meanwhile, in Group B, host Maccabi Tel-Aviv secured a 3-2 victory over Icelandic club Breidablik.
In Group G, Eintracht Frankfurt started their campaign with a 2-1 win over Aberdeen.