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Perfect Stuttgart secure Europa League knockout spot

Stuttgart won their fourth straight Europa League match against Getafe in Spain, booking a ticket to the final phases. Also on Thursday, Bayer Leverkusen snatched a last-minute victory, while Dortmund drew 0-0 in Paris.

Marica vies for the ball

Ciprian Marica scored the opener for Stuttgart

Stuttgart won 3-0 in Spain against Getafe on Thursday, thanks to goals from Ciprian Marica, Timo Gebhart und Martin Harnik. The win extends their perfect record and stretches their lead in Group H to six points. The side may be struggling in the Bundesliga, but are now guaranteed a place in the knockout phase of the Europa League.

Bayer Leverkusen also helped their chances of qualifying, by snatching a 1-0 win against Greek side Aris Saloniki, thanks to a last-minute goal from Chilean Arturo Vidal. Leverkusen stay top of Group B, but trainer Jupp Heynckes wasn't pleased with the performance on the pitch, calling it the team's "worst game this season."

Borussia Dortmund, meanwhile, could only manage a goalless draw on their trip to France to face Paris St Germain. "The whole time, I kept thinking we would score a goal," said defender Neven Subotic.

Bundesliga leaders Dortmund remain third in Group J, and are thus the German side with the worst prospects for advancement, having collected only five points from their four matches.

FC Sevilla's 4-0 win over Karpaty Lviv on Thursday puts the Spaniards top of Group J, four points clear of Dortmund; Paris St Germain are second in the group with eight points.

Author: Sarah Harman
Editor: Mark Hallam

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