AIK through after Luxembourg stalemate

AS La Jeunesse d'Esch 0-0 AIK (agg: 0-1) The Swedish champions' place in the third qualifying round was never really in doubt even if they were forced to rely on Pontus Engblom's first-leg effort.

Kenny Pavey's dead-ball delivery was always a threat in Luxembourg
Kenny Pavey's dead-ball delivery was always a threat in Luxembourg ©Getty Images

Swedish titleholders AIK edged through to next week's UEFA Champions League third qualifying round as a goalless draw at AS La Jeunesse d'Esch sealed a 1-0 aggregate triumph.

Pontus Engblom's first-leg effort was all that separated these sides going into the return in Luxembourg, and it was all that divided them at the end of 90 guarded minutes too. The hosts' policy of sitting back and looking to hit on the break provided little reward as AIK enjoyed the lion's share of possession and chances; even when Gregory Servais finally fashioned a late opening nobody was on hand to get on the end of his testing cross.

Even a draw was harsh on an AIK side who made all the running at La Frontière, with Kenny Pavey's dead-ball delivery always dangerous. A combination of last-ditch defending and profligacy – most notably from Antônio Flávio just after half-time – meant the visitors were unable to capitalise.

Cracks in the Jeunesse Esch defence appeared towards the end and it took a fine block from Charles Leweck to deny Dulee Johnson before goalkeeper Marc Oberweis beat away a Goran Ljubojević effort. The front line was unable to reward the commitment, however, so AIK advance to meet either Linfield FC or Rosenborg BK.

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