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Santa Coloma shock as Serbians shine

Published: Friday 20 July 2007, 0.36CET
Southern round-up: FC Santa Coloma became the first Andorran side to win a European match, while two of Serbia's UEFA Cup contenders were also celebrating.
 
 
Published: Friday 20 July 2007, 0.36CET

Santa Coloma shock as Serbians shine

Southern round-up: FC Santa Coloma became the first Andorran side to win a European match, while two of Serbia's UEFA Cup contenders were also celebrating.

FC Santa Coloma wrote their name into the history books as the first Andorran side to win a match in European competition following a 1-0 success against Israel's Maccabi Tel-Aviv FC in the UEFA Cup first qualifying round. Elsewhere, there were big home first-leg wins for Croatia's NK Slaven Koprivnica and FK Vojvodina while a second Serbian side, FK Partizan, were rampant on the road.

FC Santa Coloma 1-0 Maccabi Tel-Aviv FC
Julià Fernández's 56th-minute strike ensured a landmark moment for Andorran football. The Andorran Cup holders could even have won by a greater margin but substitute Gabi Mesa's long-range strike rattled the crossbar in the 87th minute. Two drawn matches in the UEFA Intertoto Cup were all the principality had to show for their efforts since being admitted to UEFA in 1996 before tonight's magnificent victory for Vicenç Marquès' side. Marquès had led his previous club FC Rànger's to one of those draws in 2005. Maccabi host the return leg in a fortnight at the Bloomfield Stadium.

NK Zrinjski 1-6 FK Partizan
Lamine Diarra returned to haunt his former side by grabbing a clinical hat-trick as the Serbian giants recorded a heavy win in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The debuting Senegalese striker, who made his switch to the Belgrade club from Zrinjski just a few weeks ago, opened the scoring in the 17th minute and Darko Maletić (37) doubled the lead. The second half was even more one-sided as Stefan Jovetić fired in the third goal and Diarra added the next two. Matija Matko struck a consolation but there was still time for Žarko Lazetić to compound Zrinjski's misery. The match was held up following crowd disturbances in the first half.

FK Vojvodina 5-1 Hibernians FC
Ranko Despotović helped himself to a hat-trick as the Maltese side were put to the sword at the Vojvodina Stadium. The striker claimed his first two goals after eleven and 42 minutes to set the Serbian side on their way. Igor Durić made it 3-0 on the hour mark before a flurry of late goals. Gojko Kačar (84) extended the hosts' lead further only for an away goal, courtesy of Nigerian midfielder Udochukwu Nwoko's penalty, to give Hibernians hope. However, any belief appeared to be extinguished when Despotović rounded off the scoring with two minutes remaining.

FK Budućnost Podgorica 1-1 HNK Hajduk Split
Honours were even as these clubs from Montenegro and Croatia met for the first time in 16 years. Hajduk were the superior team in the first half and made that count in style as Mirko Hrgović drilled a free-kick from 30 metres into the right corner of the net. Budućnost coach Sasa Petrović brought on Marko Šćepanović for the second half and the substitute not only galvanised his side, but scored the equaliser with another fine strike in the 61st minute.

AC Omonia 2-0 FK Rudar Pljevlja
Goals either side of half-time from Kostas Kaiafas and Kyriakos Chaili earned the Cypriot side a win against their Montenegrin opponents in Nicosia. The hosts had a lucky escape when a quick break resulted in Aleksandar Minić's goal being narrowly ruled out for offside, but they took the lead two minutes before the break when captain Kaiafas saw his free-kick deflect past goalkeeper Milan Mijatović. The second goal came just after the restart as Magno broke free on the left and whipped in a cross for new signing Chaili to prod past Mijatović. Musawengosi Mguni, Chaili and substitute George Vakouftsis all missed chances to extend the advantage.

NK Slaven Koprivnica 6-2 KS Teuta
Asim Sehić and Bojan Vručina both scored twice as the Croatian side notched up an impressive victory against ten-man Teuta. On their UEFA Cup debut, Slaven fell behind after ten minutes when Daniel Xhafaj scored but levelled six minutes later through Srebrenko Posavec's penalty. Maringlen Kapaj was sent off for his second booking and Sehić took advantage with debut goals before and after half-time. Julian Brahja's reply was sandwiched between Vručina's two strikes and Petar Bošnjak struck the sixth in the added time. The win marked an impressive first night's work for new Slaven coach Krunoslav Jurčić and they will expect to progress following the return leg in Albania.

FK Bežanija 2-2 KS Besa
A last-gasp equaliser from Francois Elokan enabled the Albanian side to return home with a creditable draw from their trip to Serbia. Bežanija will be bitterly disappointed with the result after taking the lead on two occasions. Marko Djalović put them in front for the first time on 38 minutes but the visitors drew level just after half-time through Abdullahi Ishaka. Bežanija quickly restored their one-goal buffer with a penalty from Mario Djurovski and that looked to be enough to win the game until Mexican striker Elokan popped up in the nick of time to earn Besa a share of the spoils.

Sliema Wanderers FC 0-3 PFC Litex Lovech
The Bulgarian visitors all but made sure of their second qualifying round place with a fine win in Ta' Qali. The visitors opened their account on 22 minutes when Ivelin Popov found the net and continued to dominate with Brazilian Wellington a constant threat to the Maltese side. Litex doubled their advantage shortly after half-time through striker Beto and another strike followed quickly as Popov rounded off a fine performance with his second goal on 57 minutes to leave Sliema with an uphill task in Lovech in two weeks' time.

NK Široki Brijeg 3-1 FC Koper
The Bosnia-Herzegovnian side recovered from the setback of conceding an early goal to take a two-goal advantage to Slovenia for the second leg. Mitja Viler stunned the home crowd after just seven minutes with a fine 25-metre effort. However, Široki Brijeg turned the game around with three goals before half-time. Firstly, in the 24th minute, Celson scored the equaliser and nine minutes later he repeated the trick to put the hosts in front. Ronielle's goal, just one minute before the break, was to prove the last of the evening as the home side contrived to waste a number of chances to further their advantage.

FK Vardar 0-1 Anorthosis Famagusta FC
A late goal from Bulgarian Metodi Deyanov gave the Cypriot outfit a narrow advantage ahead of the second leg. Anorthosis should have taken the lead after 15 minutes but Marians Pahars headed wide from close range before the hosts missed two good chances prior to the interval. Ostoja Stjepanović shot narrowly wide while Hristijan Kirovski beat three defenders only to fire over the bar. Deyanov failed to covert two chances after the break but he made amends by springing the offside trap, rounding goalkeeper Jordan Georgievski, and calmly finishing. Milan Perendija was sent off seconds later as the Skopje side's night finished on a low note.

NK Gorica 1-2 FK Rabotnicki
Rabotnicki will return to F.Y.R Macedonia with high hopes of reaching the second qualifying round after this narrow victory in Slovenia. The visitors were happy to sit back and absorb Gorica's counterattacks, yet their opener was a touch fortunate as home defender Marko Šuler inadvertently sent the ball into his own net (74). Tim Matavž levelled for Gorica two minutes later with a lovely shot from outside the box, although the late drama went the way of Rabotnicki as Krste Velkoski made it 2-1 in the final minute.

 
Last updated: 20/07/07 11.39CET

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