Zenit eliminated in Champions League after losing to Benfica

LISBON, Portugal (AP) -- Zenit St. Petersburg was eliminated from the Champions League after a 3-0 loss to Benfica on Tuesday.

Lyon advanced as the second-place team in Group G thanks to a 2-2 draw against group winner Leipzig at home.

Zenit would have advanced if Lyon had lost to Leipzig.

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The Russian side ended last in the group, missing a spot in the Europa League as well. Benfica finished third to secure a place in the round of 32 of the second-tier European club competition.

Leipzig won the group with 11 points, three more than Lyon. Benfica and Zenit ended with seven points, with the Portuguese club ahead in the tiebreakers.

Zenit was trying to make it to the knockout stage of the Champions League for the first time since the 2015-16 season.

Midfielder Franco Cervi opened the scoring from close range in the 47th minute after a low cross by Pizzi Fernandes, who added to the lead by converting a 58th-minute penalty kick following a handball by Douglas Santos. The Brazilian defender was sent off with a second yellow card because of the foul.

Benfica's third was an own-goal by Sardar Azmoun in the 79th. The forward flicked the ball into his own net while trying to clear a cross inside the area.

Zenit had won 3-1 in Russia.


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