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UEFA Europa League goalscoring landmarks

Thursday 29 November 2012 15.13 CET
Edinson Cavani celebrates scoring the 2,000th UEFA Europa League goal

Edinson Cavani's added-time penalty at AIK on matchday five confirmed SSC Napoli's place in the UEFA Europa League round of 32 and was also the 2,000th goal – group stage to final – since the advent of the UEFA Europa League in 2009/10. UEFA.com looks back at the other landmark strikes.

No1: Alberto Zapater (GENOA CFC 2-0 SK Slavia Praha)
17/09/09, group stage
Four minutes into matchday one of the inaugural UEFA Europa League group stage, midfielder Alberto Zapater beat Slavia goalkeeper Martin Vaniak with a whipped free-kick from out wide to register the first goal of the competition proper – his side went on to win the Group B game 2-0. Zapater had joined Genoa from Real Zaragoza that summer and said: "This goal means a lot to me. Things could not be going better: we are winning games, playing well, the fans are happy and I also scored today. I didn't know it was the first goal in the Europa League group stage, but I knew it was an important goal for us."

No500: Liedson (SPORTING CLUBE DE PORTUGAL 2-2 Club Atlético de Madrid)
18/03/10, round of 16 second leg
Liedson responded to a Sergio Agüero strike – Atlético's 350th in UEFA competition – by heading his team level at 1-1 some 19 minutes into a frenzied first half. It would be 2-2 by the interval, Anderson Polga cancelling out a second Agüero effort, but no further goals – coupled with a preceding 0-0 draw in the away leg – meant the Spanish club moved a step closer to their ultimate final success. "The boss [Quique Sánchez Flores] gave me a hug at the end – he looked really happy," Agüero said. Leões captain João Moutinho told UEFA.com: "We gave everything to win, but we couldn’t convert any of our second-half chances."

No1,000: Alan (SC BRAGA 2-0 KKS Lech Poznań)
24/02/11, round of 32 second leg
Alan notched the competition's 1,000th goal after eight minutes to nullify Lech's 1-0 first-leg advantage, and with Lima scoring again before the break, the Arsenalistas' fairy-tale journey to the all-Portuguese final continued – though they would lose the decider to FC Porto. After the match, which set up a round of 16 meeting with Liverpool FC, midfielder Custódio told UEFA.com: "[Then Liverpool midfielder] Raul Meireles is a friend who I played with for several years in Portugal's youth teams. Of course I want to beat him, but one thing's for sure, it won't be easy." Braga, however, were to win through.

No1,500: Artur Sobiech (HANNOVER 96 3-1 FC Vorskla Poltava)
15/12/11, group stage
A summer signing from KSP Polonia Warszawa, Poland striker Artur Sobiech claimed his first goal for the Bundesliga club to make it 3-1, with that tap-in being the 1,500th goal in the competition. "I hope we can stay in the Europa League for as long as possible – it's a lot of fun," said his team-mate Altin Lala afterwards. Hannover coach Mirko Slomka's group stage debutants would do just that, battling on until the quarter-finals where they bowed out to eventual victors Atlético. "Our disappointment outweighs our pride at coming this far," forward Jan Schlaudraff later reflected.

No2,000: Edinson Cavani (AIK 1-2 SSC NAPOLI)
22/11/12, group stage
Also the last goal recorded at Solna's Råsundastadion, Cavani's effort kept him top of the 2012/13 scorers chart with six goals and sent ten-man Napoli into the round of 32. It was another marquee moment for the Uruguay attacker, who had matched Falcao's record of four goals in a UEFA Europa League game in the 4-2 Group F win against FC Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk two weeks before. In Stockholm, Cavani reflected on Brazil's 5-2 victory over Sweden in the 1958 FIFA World Cup final, saying: "I'm very happy to have scored where a certain Pelé scored many years ago. The important thing, however, was the victory."

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