By Fatih Erel
ISTANBUL (AA) - Turkey's Trabzonspor beat Greek football club AEK Athens 3-1 in the first leg match of the UEFA Europa League playoffs.
In an away match at the OAKA Spyros Louis Stadium, Trabzonspor gained advantage with striker Ekuban's hat-trick in Athens to advance to the group stage before the second leg match at home.
Turkish top-tier football league club Trabzonspor gained advantage with their striker Ekuban's hat-trick in Athens to advance to the group stage.
Ekuban scored the goals at 29th, 44th and 70th minute while Livaja netted a goal for the AEK at the 4th minute.
After eliminating Czech opponents Sparta Prague, Trabzonspor had qualified for the playoffs while the AEK had eliminated Romania's Universitatea Craiova to advance the playoff round.
The second leg will be played in Trabzon, northern Turkey on Aug. 29.