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Valencia hold firm to end Dynamo hopes

Valencia CF 0-0 FC Dynamo Kyiv (agg: 2-0)
The hosts refused to surrender their two-goal first-leg advantage to Oleh Blokhin's men, ensuring a last-16 tie with PFC Ludogorets Razgrad.

Valencia hold firm to end Dynamo hopes
Valencia hold firm to end Dynamo hopes ©UEFA.com

Valencia CF will face PFC Ludogorets Razgrad in the UEFA Europa League round of 16 after a goalless draw was enough for the Spanish side to end FC Dynamo Kyiv's tournament hopes.

Holding a 2-0 advantage from last week's round of 32 first leg, Juan Antonio Pizzi's team – now unbeaten in their last eight games – held the visitors at bay in the return at the Estadi de Mestalla to avenge their away-goals elimination by the Ukrainian outfit in the 2008/09 UEFA Cup.

Dynamo started the game brightly but needed to be wary of the threat posed by their opponents on the counterattack. Oleh Blokhin's men probed through Miguel Veloso and the impressive Jeremain Lens but failed to find the early breakthrough. At the other end Valencia were forced to wait until the 20th minute for their first sight of goal – Daniel Parejo firing wide after some good combination play.

As the match progressed, the 2004 trophy winners began to take control and went close to snatching the opener when Parejo's free-kick found first-leg scorer Eduardo Vargas who headed into the side netting. The hosts continued to press and spurned another opportunity before the break with Vargas unable to capitalise after Dynamo goalkeeper Olexandr Rybka parried Fede Cartabia's initial effort.

Valencia had never lost to Ukrainian opposition prior to this encounter and seemed determined to maintain that record in the second period, with Vargas shooting wide either side of two spurned Paco Alcácer attempts. Dynamo rallied, however, and rattled the crossbar through Veloso's drive from distance in the 71st minute. Yevhen Khacheridi then flashed a header wide but that was as good as it got for the Kyiv club. Los Che can look forward to a last-16 meeting with Ludogorets, conquerors of SS Lazio, on 13 and 20 March.