Teun Koopmeiners late penalty earned AZ Alkmaar a hard fought 1-1 draw against LASK Linz in the first leg of their Europa League clash.

AZ went into the game without Fredrik Midtso and Stijn Wuytens, meaning Hakon Evjen got his first start while Teun Koopmeiners moved into the centre of defence.

After a minute, AZ thought they had a penalty for a foul on Myron Boadu, but after being checked by VAR, the foul took place outside the box. Teun Koopmeiners couldn’t find the net with the resulting free-kick.

The start of the game was open but in the 26th minute, LASK Linz took the lead when Raguz’s strike deflected off Ramon Leeuwin leaving Marco Bizot with no chance.

The Austrian Bundesliga leaders then had chances to make it 2-0 before the break but Bizot kept the score down.

Early in the second half, AZ came close to the equaliser but Myron Boadu’s effort was kept out by LASK goalkeeper Alexander Schlager.

AZ continued to push for an equaliser but it seemed the Austrian side were going to hold out for the win. However, with two minutes left, VAR spotted a handball in the box and the hosts were awarded a penalty, which Koopmeiners netted to make it 1-1.

Next week, AZ will head to Austria knowing they will need to score at least once to keep their Europa League hopes alive.

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