MARIBOR, Slovenia — Sevilla qualified for the knockout phase of the Champions League with a 1-1 draw at Maribor on Wednesday.
In freezing temperatures, the Spanish side started poorly but recovered after the interval and equalized through Ganso to clinch the runner-up spot in Group E.
Liverpool thrashed Spartak 7-0 in the group’s other match to seal first place.
Maribor, which finished fourth without a win, broke the deadlock with its first attack at the Ljudski vrt stadium. Defender Martin Milec crossed the ball over the Sevilla defense from the right for the unmarked Marcos Tavares, who headed home from close range after 10 minutes.
Sevilla struggled to get in the contest and Aleks Pihler had a good chance to double his team’s lead soon afterward with a header that flew just wide of the left post.
Sevilla wasted its best chance when a poor pass by Maribor midfielder Damjan Bohar went straight into Wissam Ben Yedder’s path, only for the striker to see his shot blocked.
The visitors played better in the second half with a more accurate passing game and came close in the 50th minute, but Maribor goalkeeper Jasmin Handanovic produced a fine double save to keep his team ahead.
Handanovic was decisive again in the 73rd minute when he lunged to deny a close-range effort from Ben Yedder, but the tall goalkeeper should have done better with Ganso’s equalizer two minutes later. He dived too late, letting the ball slip under his body and into the net.