American midfielder Landon Donovan had a winning Europa League debut when Everton opened the second round with a 2-1 win over Sporting Lisbon on Tuesday.
Everton took a two-goal lead on goals by Steven Pienaar in the 35th minute and Sylvain Distin in the 49th. Miguel Veloso converted a penalty kick in the 87th minute — giving Sporting a potentially important away goal — following a red card to Distin.
Other first-leg games are Thursday.
Before the match, Everton said midfielder Marouane Fellaini is expected to be sidelined for six months because of a serious ankle injury that requires surgery. Fellaini was injured Feb. 6 in a challenge by Liverpool's Sotirios Kyrgiakos, who was ejected.