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Verlaat own goal sinks Bremen

Published: Thursday 31 October 2002, 22.21CET
SBV Vitesse 2-1 SV Werder Bremen Vitesse confident after Frank Verlaat scores at each end.
Published: Thursday 31 October 2002, 22.21CET

Verlaat own goal sinks Bremen

SBV Vitesse 2-1 SV Werder Bremen Vitesse confident after Frank Verlaat scores at each end.

An own goal from SV Werder Bremen's Frank Verlaat just 20 minutes after he had drawn his side level gave SBV Vitesse a 2-1 UEFA Cup second-round first-leg victory at the Gelredome in Arnhem.

Own-goal decider
Verlaat's 43rd-minute goal had cancelled out Mathew Amoah's earlier strike, but the unfortunate Bremen player put the ball past his own goalkeeper midway through the second half to give Vitesse a slender lead going into their away leg.

Jevric on form
The match got off to a slow start and although Vitesse enjoyed the majority of possession, they rarely threatened the Bremen goal in the opening 20 minutes. Against the run of play Bremen created the first real chance of the match and Dragoslav Jevric had to be at his best to keep out Johan Micoud's free-kick.

Amoah strikes first
Vitesse came close on 29 minutes when Aleksandar Rankovic and Rachmed Mustapha combined to set up Bob Peeters who just failed to direct his header on goal. Six minutes later, however, Vitesse made no mistake. Evgen Levchenko beat Verlaat and picked out an unmarked Amoah who left Pascal Borel no chance in the Bremen goal.

Verlaat hits back
The goal brought Bremen to life and two minutes before the break they drew level. Franck Baumann flicked on a corner from Ailton for Verlaat who made up for his earlier mistake to restore parity.

Vitesse restore lead
Bremen began where they left off at the start of the second half with Micoud increasingly influential in midfield, but it was Vitesse who struck next when, on 63 minutes, Verlaat deflected Peters' cross into his own goal. Vitesse should have added a third late on, but with 12 minutes to go the otherwise impressive Peeters headed wide from close range.

Snoei upbeat
Vitesse coach Mike Snoei was delighted with the victory. "I am very satisfied but I thought there was more in it," he said. "They weren't as good as we had expected and we were unlucky with their equaliser. With this result we will travel to Bremen with plenty of defending to do, but I am confident we can reach the next round."

Last updated: 01/11/02 1.00CET