American Exports: Terrence Boyd's Rapid Vienna into Europa League playoff round
AMSTERDAM – Only one of two Americans taking part in Europa League third qualifying-round deciders advanced on Thursday, with Terrence Boyd and Rapid Vienna completing a 3-1 (4-2) victory over Greek visitors Asteras Tripolis.
In the 25th minute, Boyd picked up his second career Europa League assist just one day shy of a year past his first. The forward nudged the ball along in the area for Thanos Petsos to score from close range.
Boyd nearly doubled the Rapid lead just beyond the half-hour, only to be robbed at the end of a corner kick. The US international, who saw yellow in the second half, only managed to put that one of his four shots on target during the full shift.
Boyd & Co. will now be seeded in Friday's playoff-round draw, where they will learn their fate along with several other clubs that employ Americans. The Molde FK of injured winger Josh Gatt are the only such team Rapid can meet in the next round, with Aron Jóhannsson's AZ Alkmaar, Conor O'Brien's FC Nordsjælland and Brad Friedel's Tottenham Hotspur all holding seeds.
Meanwhile, Bryan Gerzicich and Hapoel Tel Aviv let an early lead slip away with their tournament hopes in a 2-1 (3-2) defeat against Romanian guests Pandurii Târgu Jiu. The Los Angeles-born defensive midfielder took a crack at tying the game from distance with 16 minutes left, but could not beat away netminder Pedro Mingote.