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Ten-man Dinamo progress despite Malmö defeat

Published: Tuesday 23 August 2011, 23.03CET
Malmö FF 2-0 GNK Dinamo Zagreb (agg: 3-4)
The ten-man Croatian champions reached the group stage for the first time in 12 years despite a 2-0 defeat in Sweden.
Ten-man Dinamo progress despite Malmö defeat
Dinamo goalkeeper Ivan Kelava celebrates with team-mate Domagoj Vida at the full time whistle ©Getty Images
Published: Tuesday 23 August 2011, 23.03CET

Ten-man Dinamo progress despite Malmö defeat

Malmö FF 2-0 GNK Dinamo Zagreb (agg: 3-4)
The ten-man Croatian champions reached the group stage for the first time in 12 years despite a 2-0 defeat in Sweden.

Ten-man GNK Dinamo Zagreb sealed a place in the UEFA Champions League group stage for the first time since 1999/00 despite suffering a 2-0 defeat at Malmö FF.

Malmö needed a minor miracle to overturn the 4-1 reverse last time out but came close after Šime Vrsaljko was dismssed for Dinamo before Wílton Figueiredo fired in a fiercely-struck free-kick. Pontus Jansson then scored to set up a tense finale but the Croatian champions held on thanks to some fine saves from goalkeeper Ivan Kelava.

Malmö lined up in an attacking formation and, on five minutes, Jiloan Hamad's incisive pass split the Dinamo defence, but Kelava was sharply off his line to deny Agon Mehmeti. Dinamo were dangerous on the counterattack, and had the chance of the half just before the break, Sammir holding off challenges before finding Ante Rukavina, who shot wide with only Dušan Melichárek to beat.

Malmö were handed a lifeline five minutes into the second half when Vrsaljko was sent off for a high challenge on Jimmy Durmaz. The hosts almost capitalised on their numerical advantage immediately but Hamad volleyed Durmaz's cross wide with team-mates better placed in the area.

Against the run of play, Dinamo should have taken the lead but Fatos Beqiraj's shot was parried by Melichárek into the path of Rukavina, who had his effort blocked on the line. Rukavina missed another great opportunity minutes later after being played in by substitute Mateo Kovačić.

Malmö's breakthrough came in the 69th minute when Figueiredo's superb free-kick found a way past Kelava at his near post. Rikard Norling's side ramped up the pressure, with Hamad and Daniel Larsson bringing the best out of the Dinamo No1. Defender Jansson then struck with four minutes remaining to set up a grandstand finish, poking in Hamad's lay-off after Ricardinho's cross caused havoc in the visitors' penalty area, but Krunoslav Jurčić's side just about clung on.

Last updated: 25/08/11 1.02CET

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