Newcastle United FC were among the teams to claim away wins in the day's early UEFA Cup first-round first-leg games, while both Bucharest teams were victorious and Spanish sides RCD Espanyol and CA Osasuna each drew 2-2 on their travels. The second legs will be played in two weeks' time.
FC Levadia Tallinn 0-1 Newcastle United FC
UEFA Intertoto Cup winners Newcastle look on course for the group stage. Debutant Antoine Sibierski, signed on deadline day from Manchester City FC, headed in on ten minutes from a Damien Duff free-kick. Goalkeeper Artur Kotenko kept Levadia in the game for the next 15 minutes but the home side had the best of the chances after that, with Vladimir Voskoboinikov forcing a good stop from Shay Given early in the second half.
AFC Rapid Bucuresti 1-0 CD Nacional
Following FC Steaua Bucuresti's UEFA Champions League heroics on Wednesday night, Rapid began their bid to reach at least the quarter-finals for the second year running with a win secured by 34-year-old forward Viorel Moldovan, who struck with a powerful low shot on 43 minutes. Rapid goalkeeper Danut Coman had earlier needed to be alert to stop Ricardo Fernandes's header, but in the second period the home side were on top and Ianis Zicu, Mugurel Buga and Ryan Griffiths all went close.
Skoda Xanthi FC 3-4 FC Dinamo 1948 Bucuresti
Completing another fine week for Bucharest teams, last season's group stage entrants Dinamo won an entertaining game in Greece. Xanthi, looking for a first European win, went ahead on eight minutes through Diego Quintana. That roused the visitors and ten minutes later Claudiu Niculescu's header met Ionel Danciulescu's cross. Danciulescu then scored himself in the 25th minute, running on to Andrei Margaritescu's clever through-ball, before Niculescu struck again from long range. Xanthi pulled one back before the break thanks to Quintana, and Vlasis Kazakis levelled on 66 minutes. However, with six minutes left Cristian Pulhac's left-footed shot gave Dinamo the last say.
FC Artmedia 2-2 RCD Espanyol
Aiming to follow their 2005/06 UEFA Champions League group stage run with a similar UEFA Cup campaign, Artmedia were denied victory against the Copa del Rey holders thanks to Walter Pandiani's equaliser early in the second half. Albert Riera had put Espanyol ahead on the half-hour, pouncing on a rebound, but by half-time it was Artmedia who were in front thanks to Juraj Halenár and captain Daniel Tchuř. After Pandiani's deflected goal, the visitors dominated and Moisés Hurtado hit the post.
Beşiktaş JK 2-0 PFC CSKA Sofia
Two late goals gave the Turkish side control, after the Bulgarian visitors had been reduced to ten men midway through the second half when Robert Petrov was dismissed. Kleberson broke the deadlock inside the last ten minutes and Gökhan Güleç then struck a second.
Trabzonspor 2-2 CA Osasuna
Like CSKA Sofia, Osasuna were reduced to ten men in Turkey, but the Spanish side matched fellow Spaniards Espanyol in emerging with a 2-2 draw. Valdo put the visitors into the lead midway through the first half and although José Izquierdo was dismissed before the break, Juanlu made it 2-0 from a goalmouth scramble eight minutes after the restart. Gökdeniz Karadeniz swiftly pulled one back and from his cross substitute Umut Bulut headed an equaliser late on.
Hertha BSC Berlin 2-2 Odense BK
Despite suffering an early set-back when Josip Šimunić put the ball in his own net after eight minutes, Hertha fought back and equalised six minutes before the break through Christian Giménez. Kevin-Prince Boateng gave Hertha the lead in the 49th minute but Bechara gave OB a deserved 2-2 draw five minutes later.
Ethnikos Achnas FC 0-0 RC Lens
Ten-man Lens were made to sweat in Nicosia against Cyprus's UEFA Intertoto Cup heroes. The home team piled on the pressure from the off, Milan Belić shooting over just three minutes in and Christos Poyiatzis then heading across the face of goal. Lens improved after the break, Jonathan Lacourt and Abdoulrazak Boukari forcing saves from Achnas goalkeeper Miloš Adamović, but settled for a draw after losing Sidi Keita to a second yellow card with 17 minutes left.
FC Slovan Liberec 2-0 FK Crvena Zvezda
Czech title-holders Liberec have the advantage over the 1991 European champions despite having been without captain and sole international Tomáš Zápotočný through suspension along with Pavel Košťál. Zbyněch Pospěch hit the post on 35 minutes, but the home team took the lead just before the break as Jan Holenda found Tomáš Frejlach on the edge of the area and he fired in an unstoppable shot. Liberec doubled their lead in added time when 18-year-old substitute Jan Blažek struck from close range.
Legia Warsazawa 1-1 FK Austria Wien
Austria took a valuable away goal home from Warsaw after a pass from Jocelyn Blanchard split the Legia defence after just nine minutes allowing Wolfgang Mair to score. Despite a poor display from the home side, they equalised just before half-time with new Brazilian playmaker Junior scoring their 100th UEFA Cup goal with a terrific shot from distance. The hosts were much improved in the second half, terrorising their visitors, although Łukasz Fabiański in the Legia goal had to be alert to deny Austria on the counterattack.
FC Chornomorets Odesa 0-1 Hapoel Tel-Aviv FC
Hapoel took a giant step towards the group stage with victory in Ukraine. Salim Toema and Barukh Dego were both denied by home goalkeeper Vitaliy Rudenko in one-on-ones in the first half, but within seven minutes of his introduction midway through the second period, Argentinian midfielder Luciano De Bruno - who also scored in the opening leg of the first qualifying round against NK Domžale - latched on to Toema's pass and calmly slid the ball under Rudenko's body.
FC Lokomotiv Moskva 2-1 SV Zulte Waregem
A late away goal for the European debutants gave the Belgian side hope of progress. Lokomotiv dominated throughout and took the lead ten minutes before half-time when Dmitri Loskov pounced on Dmitri Sychev's deflected pass. It was 2-0 on 73 minutes as Branislav Ivanović headed in Loskov's corner but the Serbian defender turned villain deep into stoppage time as he fluffed a clearance, allowing Zulte Waragem substitute Jonas Vandermarliere to score.
FK Partizan 4-2 FC Groningen
Partizan fell at this stage last season but were 3-0 up at half-time against the Dutch visitors. Nenad Marinković converted an early penalty and scored again late in the half after Bojan Zajić had claimed a second, both from around the 20-metre mark. Mark-Jan Fledderus pulled a goal back before the hour, pouncing on a Marinković slip, but Zajić made it 4-1 with the clock ticking down. Luis Suárez had time to respond with a second goal for Groningen, however, finishing with a clever lob.
©UEFA.com 1998-2016. All rights reserved.