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Sigthórsson steers AZ past BATE

AZ Alkmaar 3-0 FC BATE Borisov
The visitors were forced to settle for second place in Group E with Kolbeinn Sigthórsson scoring twice for the eliminated hosts.

Kolbeinn Sigthórsson also scored in the reverse fixture for AZ
Kolbeinn Sigthórsson also scored in the reverse fixture for AZ ©Getty Images

FC BATE Borisov's hopes of finishing top of Group E were dashed in the Netherlands as eliminated AZ Alkmaar secured a 3-0 triumph.

How the first half only produced one goal was something of a mystery but it was AZ, the dominant force, who struck first through Kolbeinn Sigthórsson after seven minutes. BATE needed to better FC Dynamo Kyiv's result at home to FC Sheriff to seal the section summit but rarely looked like salvaging anything after the restart before Sigthórsson's second and Adam Maher's goal confirmed their defeat.

Sigthórsson broke the deadlock when he nodded a long goal-kick to Maarten Martens and burst onto the return pass before unleashing an unstoppable 20-metre drive in off the underside of the bar. Sergei Sosnovski almost provided an instant response when his poked effort was saved by Sergio Romero before the hosts conjured and spurned a clutch of chances.

Brett Holman created the first as he crossed from the byline only for Pontus Wernbloom's shot to be blocked on the line by Aleksandr Yurevich. Holman then headed over a presentable centre from Martens and Erik Falkenburg homed in on Sergei Veremko only to pull his shot wide of the goalkeeper's far upright. Pavel Nekhaychik skewed wide after a lively visiting attack while Sigthórsson failed to connect sufficiently as AZ carved their way through again. Holman's strike was then palmed onto the bar by Veremko.

The second half was always unlikely to be as open and so it transpired. The closest BATE came to levelling was when Renan Bressan's free-kick was repelled by Romero with the follow-up disallowed for offside. Substitute Johann Gudmundsson created two goals to confirm AZ's victory, sliding in Sigthórsson to find an empty net on 84 minutes then releasing 17-year-old Maher (86) to fire in a debut goal.