FC Anji Makhachkala continued their impressive form in this season's UEFA Europa League with a 2-0 victory against BSC Young Boys.
The home side extended their unbeaten European run this term to seven games by drawing 1-1 at Udinese Calcio last time out and they prolonged that streak thanks to a Samuel Eto'o double. The Cameroonian forward struck twice in the second half to down the Swiss visitors, who had appeared the more likely to score in the first hour.
Young Boys were eager to make amends for their 5-3 home humbling by Liverpool FC on matchday one and were comfortably in the ascendancy in the formative stages. Their positive opening was nearly rewarded with the opening goal after seven minutes when Alain Nef headed Moreno Costanzo's corner on target, Oleg Shatov stretching to clear off the line.
The Eagles had to wait 17 minutes for their first significant foray forward, in contrast, but João Carlos blazed over and Guus Hiddink's men remained on the back foot. Indeed, a flowing Young Boys move almost prised the opener before the half-hour, only for a wrong-footed Vladimir Gabulov to deny Jan Lecjaks with an outstretched boot, before João Carlos and Christopher Samba glanced opportunities wide for the hosts.
The Yellow and Blacks maintained their rhythm after the interval, with Gonzalo Zárate firing the first warning shot over. However, the Argentinian's input at the other end then culminated in the breakthrough as his handball from Yuri Zhirkov's cross enabled Eto'o to roll in the opening goal from the penalty spot.
The striker almost made it two shortly afterwards only to plant a free header over the upright. Nef rued a similar spurning when he should have levelled, and Juhani Ojala also nodded wide when well-placed as Martin Rueda's charges betrayed a lack of composure. Eto'o had no such worries in the final minute, though, sealing the result by converting Shatov's cross.
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