LONDON (AP) — Roman Shirokov scored a hat trick Tuesday to put Zenit St. Petersburg on the brink of the Champions League group stage, while former European champions AC Milan and PSV Eindhoven are locked at 1-1 in their playoff.
Shirokov's treble came as Zenit easily overcame Pacos Ferreira 4-1 in their first leg.
At Eindhoven, Stephan El Shaarawy knocked in a header to put seven-time European champion Milan ahead after 15 minutes before Tim Matavz nodded in the equalizer at the 60-minute mark.
Tuesday's other matches saw teams claim two-goal advantages going into next week's second legs.
Kazakhstan champion Shakhter Karagandy stunned Scottish club Celtic 2-0, Real Sociedad won at Lyon by the same score and Viktoria Plzen beat Maribor 3-1 in the Czech Republic.
A further 10 clubs are in action Wednesday as they chase a spot in the lucrative 32-team group stage, which starts in September.
Zenit can already start glancing ahead to the draw in Monaco later this month.
Shirokov, the Russian midfielder, took 27 minutes to find the net in Portugal, striking the ball into the bottom of the net on a cross from Danny. Andre Leone tied the match off a volley from Pacos Ferreira in the 58th, but Shirokov was on target again from close range at the back post 2 minutes later to restore Zenit's lead.
After Aleksandr Kerzhakov's free kick went off the crossbar and into the net off goalkeeper Matias Degra in the 85th, Shirokov completed his hat trick in style in the 90th, blasting the ball into the top right corner.
It was a far tighter encounter in the Netherlands as Milan and PSV played out the night's only draw.
PSV handed Milan possession for the opening goal, with Ignazio Abate seizing the ball from Memphis Depay before whipping in a cross that El Shaarawy met with a free header.
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