Genk, 17, endures nightmare champions league debut as Napoli qualifies


Genk’s 17-year-old goalkeeper Maarten Vandevoordt endured a horrible Champions League debut as Arkadiusz Milik’s hat-trick helped Napoli into the Champions League last 16.

Vandevoordt, the youngest keeper to start a Champions League game, conceded early on when he dwelt on a backpass and Milik scored from close range.

Milik scored from Giovanni di Lorenzo’s cross and completed his treble with a penalty after Vandevoordt fouled Jose Callejon before Dries Mertens converted a chipped ‘Panenka’ penalty late on.

Less than three hours after the match, Napoli announced they had sacked manager Carlo Ancelotti, who had overseen a run of nine matches without a win before Tuesday’s victory.

In the other match in the group, Liverpool beat Red Bull Salzburg 2-0 to top Group E, with Napoli advancing as runners-up.

Genk had already been eliminated and they handed a first Champions League start to Vandevoordt, who only made his senior debut on 24 September and had featured three times for the Belgian champions this season.

At 17 years and 287 days, he became the youngest keeper in the competition, beating the previous record of Benfica’s Mile Svilar, who was 18 years and 52 days old when he played against Manchester United in October 2017.

Vandevoordt conceded after only three minutes when Jhon Lucumi played it back to him, but he did not control the ball cleanly and, closed down by two Napoli players, presented it to Milik who could not miss.

Milki completed his hat-trick in only 38 minutes before Mertens’ late penalty, following Casper de Norre’s handball, sealed Napoli’s convincing win.


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