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Serbo-Montenegrin title-holders FK Partizan were held to a 1-1 home draw by Swedish counterparts Djurgårdens IF in the first leg of their UEFA Champions League second qualifying round tie.
Djurgården striker Rene Makonoele did the damage with an 72nd-minute equaliser after Partizan, who missed a series of chances throughout the match, had finally broken the deadlock early in the second half through captain Saša Ilic.
With the home team pressing forward from the start, Nebojša Malbaša, Milan Stojanoski and Ivica Iliev all passed up presentable opportunities in the opening period, while the visitors' only chance fell to Makonoele who shot straight at Radovan Radakovic in Partizan's goal.
None the less, the Belgrade outfit were finally rewarded for their attacking efforts soon after the restart when Milivoje Cirkovic combined with Damir Cakar to allow Ilic to fire home from 12 metres.
The goal served only to inspire Djurgården, however, and Markus Karlsson and Kim Källström both went close either side of Makonoele's equaliser. The latter made the most of a mistake by Albert Nadj to score from 15 metres, and neither side was then able to find a winner in the closing stages.
'We are a better side'
"I want to congratulate my players," said Partizan coach Lothar Matthäus. "They did well but had no luck. We missed so many chances and they punished us. But I am optimistic and believe we will get a result in Sweden. We are a better side than Djurgården and want to show that."
The teams will try again in next week's second leg, with the winners due to face Newcastle United FC of England in the third qualifying round.
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