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Dramatic finishes highlight Europa League knockouts

Some absolutely wonderful drama and insane levels of entertainment gave us a heck of a show to watch in the second leg of the round of 16.

Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

After the first two knockout rounds this year, anyone who still says the Europa League is boring needs their eyes checked, because this competition is so insane and so much fun.

There were ten goals scored in the early slate of games and and twelve more plus drama galore in the late set as we found out who will be playing in the quarterfinals next month. It's been a wonderful display of football teams eager and desperate for success so far in the Europa League knockout rounds, and hopefully the fun will only get better as we race towards the final in Warsaw.

The quarter final draw will be at 8 a.m. ET on Friday, so tune in to see which of today's victors will be facing one another in the next round.

Dynamo Kyiv 5-2 Everton

You want goals? We'll give you goals. Seven of them, in point of fact. Dynamo Kyiv came in to this match trailing 2-1 in the tie and knew that they had to score a couple of goals in order to assure advancement, since their defense wasn't likely to keep Everton from scoring an away goal to cancel out that tiebreaker advantage the Ukrainians held after the first leg. Indeed, their defense shipped two goals -- but that didn't matter a lick, because Dynamo kept charging up the pitch and punching Everton's defense in the mouth to the tune of five goals scored. Everton aren't a bad team despite their struggles in the Premier League, but Dynamo made them look very poor indeed as they ripped them to shreds as they could. On a day that wound up largely friendly for the road teams, this home side put on a show for their fans.

Dynamo Moscow 0-0 Napoli

On contrast, we saw a 0-0 draw in Russia, but it was anything but the "bore draw" most would assume when they see the scoreline. Napoli came within about eight total inches of scoring three goals in the first half, hitting the woodwork twice and seeing Christian Maggio just plain whiff on a clear chance in the box. Dynamo had a pair of goals ruled out for offside, one questionably so, and we could easily have seen a 3-2 scoreline at the half. The second half was much tenser, with Napoli having to hold off a determined Dynamo attack, but they did what they had to do and kept the match scoreless, advancing to their first European quarter-final in 26 years on the strength of their 3-1 home win a week ago in the first leg.

Besiktas 1-3 Club Bruges

Club Bruges had to fight tooth and nail to earn a 1-0 win at home in the first leg, and they didn't stop fighting when they faced Besiktas in Istanbul, always a terribly difficult place for foreign clubs to win. They held their Turkish hosts at bay for the first half before giving up their aggregate lead to a wonder-strike from Ramon Motta, but impressively didn't let the goal get them down at all. Even with the raucous Ataturk Stadium crowd against them, Bruges fought back with passion and drive, retaking the aggregate lead at the hour mark by pouncing on a mistake by Besiktas' defense, with Tom De Sutter taking the ball and racing past Besiktas keeper Tolga Zengin to score, putting Bruges back ahead on aggregate. That goal seemed to break the will of the Turks, and Bruges were able to score twice more in the last ten minutes, earning a massive 5-2 aggregate win and giving the Belgians a very, very well earned place in the quarterfinals.

Ajax Amsterdam 2-1 Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk

This match deserves a mention if for not other reason than being the only tie of the round to go to extra time. Ajax trailed 1-0 after the first leg and could only find one goal in regulation, forcing an extra half hour of play -- but they couldn't keep Dnipro at bay forever. Yevhen Kopnoplyanka, Dnipro's captain and a Ukrainian international team star, put the burden of carrying his injury-battered team through on himself, finding a seam in front of Ajax's defense to cut in to and blast away with his right foot. Jasper Cilessen couldn't reach the low shot in time, and Dnipro looked like they were through with ease. Ajax weren't quite done yet, though, scoring their second of the match with just three minutes left in extra time -- but they couldn't find a third, and Dnipro scraped through on away goals.

Full round of 16 second leg results

Aggregate score in parenthesis, advancing team in bold

Dynamo Moscow 0-0 Napoli (1-3)

AS Roma 0-3 Fiorentina (1-4)

Dynamo Kyiv 5-2 Everton (6-4)

Ajax Amsterdam 2-1 Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk (2-2 aet)

Torino 1-0 Zenit St Petersburg (1-2)

Inter Milan 1-2 VfL Wolfsburg (2-5)

Sevilla 2-1 Villarreal (5-2)

Besiktas 1-3 Club Bruges (2-5)