Ross apologises after Dundee United’s record-equalling defeat by AZ Alkmaar

Dundee United’s manager, Jack Ross, apologised to travelling supporters after they were subjected to a 7-0 Europa Conference League qualifying thrashing by AZ Alkmaar.

The result was the joint-heaviest European defeat for a Scottish team, equalling the 7-0 losses suffered by Hibernian against Malmo and Celtic to Barcelona.

United had held a 1-0 lead from the first leg, but the tie was over before half-time of the return game in Holland.

Ross told BBC Radio Scotland’s Sportsound programme: “For every plaudit and praise we received in the aftermath of last Thursday, we will deserve every bit of criticism we get on the back of that.

“We played against a good team in a tough venue but we conceded six goals in 26 minutes. That’s not good, irrespective of the opponent. I would like to apologise to the travelling fans because we should be better than that.”

Vangelis Pavlidis opened the scoring after 21 minutes and the floodgates soon opened. A second from Pavlidis, two from Tijjani Reijnders, and another from Hakon Evjen made it 5-0 before the break.

Dani de Wit and Mayckel Lahdo added to the misery as the visitors suffered their heaviest European defeat, eclipsing the 5-0 loss to Dinamo Moscow 10 years ago.

League of Ireland side St Patrick’s Athletic lost 2-0 at home to CSKA Sofia to suffer a 2-1 aggregate defeat in the same competition.

The Bulgarian side took a 12th-minute lead when Maurício Garcez headed home from a corner. CSKA moved ahead in the tie eight minutes from time through Ivan Turitsov’s penalty after Harry Brockbank handled in the area.

The St Patrick’s midfielder Adam O’Reilly and CSKA’s Dutch defender Bradley de Nooijer were sent off at the final whistle after a fiery exchange.

Sligo Rovers bowed out of the competition despite a 1-0 home victory over Viking FK.

Will Fitzgerald’s deflected cross looped in for a first-half advantage, and Frank Liivak saw his 74th-minute spot-kick saved as the Norwegians progressed 5-2 on aggregate.

Linfield’s hopes of staging a Europa League recovery against FC Zurich were undone by a 3-0 defeat in Switzerland.

Trailing 2-0 from the first leg, the Irish Premiership side fell further behind when Donis Avdijaj converted Antonio Marchesano’s 11th-minute through ball. Avdijaj headed his second midway through the first half and Ivan Santini wrapped up a 5-0 aggregate win for FC Zurich six minutes from time.