Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri battled a fever while Arsenal manager Unai Emery had to reflect on a nasty injury to Danny Welbeck on a night where both sealed their places in the Europa League knockout stages.
Olivier Giroud got the only goal of the game for Chelsea against BATE Borisov while Arsenal were held 0-0 by Sporting. Thursday was a mix of emotions for the Scottish clubs as Rangers fell to a 4-3 defeat in Moscow while Celtic got a big win at home against RB Leipzig.
Sportsmail brings you a collection of things you may have missed from Thursday night’s Europa League action…
Chelsea booked their spot in the knockout stages after a busy night of Europa League football
Olivier Giroud is better than salad!
Banners in the terraces are becoming far too predictable these days with most now asking players to hand over their shirts.
But on Thursday night in Belarus, one Chelsea fan got creative as she insisted ‘Olivier Giroud is better than Olivier Salad’. Certainly different – not least because the photo showed the striker in an Arsenal shirt with the badge covered up.
An Olivier Salad is a traditional Russian dish which lists potatoes, vegetables, eggs, meat and mayonnaise among its main ingredients.
Cannot say I have tried it but Giroud scored the winner. The striker wins this round of footballer vs salad.
One Chelsea fan got creative with her banner as Olivier Giroud appears in an Arsenal shirt
Eyes on the ball…. boy
The all important rule instilled into footballers up and down the country from a young age is keep your eyes on the ball and not the man.
But one ball-boy in Moscow could do absolutely nothing to escape a thunderous strike from Rangers Andy Halliday in the final stages of Thursday’s Europa League match.
The ball-boy, with one ball already in his grasp, was not Halliday’s intended target as Steven Gerrard’s side fell to a 4-3 defeat, their first loss in the Europa League campaign this season.
As Rangers pushed for an equaliser, a fizzing strike caught a nearby ball-boy (L) by surprise
Arsenal mascot Gunnersaurus found himself with some company on Thursday night as Sporting Lisbon rolled into town.
The Arsenal mascot is a firm favourite among the club’s supporters but the Portuguese visitors did not want to be beaten in any department on or off the pitch in the Europa League.
Jubas the Lion, Sporting’s mascot, was more than happy to pose for photos as the mascots came together to whip up the crowd for the fourth game week of Group E.
Before the two sides went into battle, Arsenal and Sporting Lisbon’s mascots came together
Arsenal set the record…
The stalemate at home to Sporting Lisbon was not the style in which they would have liked to have sealed it, but Unai Emery’s side did secure safe passage to the Europa League knockout stages.
By navigating the group stages once more, it transpires that the Gunners are ‘the first side to have progressed from a (first) group stages in the Champions League (17 times) and Europa League (2 times) in all seasons this century.’
Talk about consistent!
Singing in the rain
A bit of wet weather was never going to dampen the spirits of those RB Leipzig fans who made the Thursday night trip to Glasgow.
In the build-up to their match against Celtic, the German club’s rain-soaked supporters were captured on video singing loudly near the stadium.
Sadly for Leipzig, the actual match gave them little to get merry about as Kieran Tierney and Odsonne Edouard struck to ensure the three points remained in Scotland.
Solid A for effort in the singing stakes, though.
Night to remember for one Celtic fan
It is safe to say that Europe has not been too forgiving for Celtic and their supporters this season.
Defeats away to Red Bull Salzburg and RB Leipzig left qualification to the knockout stages in serious doubt before successive home wins has given them a fighting chance.
But while many in the stands had a night to remember under the lights, one Celtic fan saw his passion spill over onto the pitch as he ran on to celebrate with the players after Odsonne Edouard had converted to make it 2-1.
Could be a while before he sees the inside of Celtic Park again… but he won’t forget those celebrations in a hurry!
One Celtic fan got a bit too excited when the Bhoys made it 2-1 as he ran onto the pitch
He attempted to celebrate with the players but was quickly apprehended by a nearby steward