Ferencvárosi TC ended their UEFA Cup campaign by winning their first match in Group A, Dénes Rósa scoring a first-half winner at Heart of Midlothian FC, but it still was not enough to earn the Hungarian side a place in the last 32 of the competition.
Dénes Rósa scored the only goal on 30 minutes to lift Ferencváros above Hearts in the section, but with FC Basel 1893 defeating Feyenoord in the night's other match, it was the Swiss side who joined Feyenoord and FC Schalke 04 in the next round.
Hearts manager John Robertson made three changes to the team that drew with Inverness Caledonian Thistle FC on Sunday. Graham Weir returned to partner Mark de Vries up front, and there were also places for Alan Maybury and Michael Stewart. Ferencváros coach Csaba László was without the suspended Adem Kapic and injured defender Sorin Botis, while Richárd Csepregi was sidelined by flu.
The home side pressed from the outset but were up against a determined Lajos Szücs. The Ferencváros goalkeeper confidently dealt with a series of crosses, then proved equally adept on the ground as he dived to his left to block Paul Hartley's shot.
Hartley did put the ball beyond Szücs moments later, but his effort was ruled out for an earlier handball. The goalkeeper then palmed away Stewart's free-kick, but as the home side attacked they left themselves exposed at the back, and Marek Penksa was frustrated to shoot wide following Aleksandar Bajevski's left-wing break.
Hearts went straight back on the attack and again Szücs saved from Hartley, but against the run of play the visitors went ahead on the half-hour. Péter Lipcsei's pass split the defence and put Dénes Rósa through on goal, and though Craig Gordon brilliantly saved the Hungarian's first attempt and his follow-up, lying prone he had no chance when Dénes Rósa collected the second rebound to score into the empty net.
With Basel then level, both sides were on the way out and a number of fouls broke up play as half-time approached. But after the restart the game opened up again and Gordon saved from Dénes Rósa before Szücs, at full stretch, tipped away Stewart's low drive. Dragan Vukmir beat Weir to the rebound and cleared in front of an unguarded goal.
Ferencváros come close
Just as in the first half, Hearts were enjoying most of the possession, but the sting was taken out of the game by the news of a Basel goal in Switzerland. For the first time the small pocket of Ferencváros fans began to make themselves heard, and twice in quick succession they almost had further reason to celebrate.
On 74 minutes Gordon touched Leanardo's drive round the post, then from the corner substitute Thomas Sowunmi crashed a header off the crossbar. Ultimately, however, Ferencváros had to settle for a single-goal victory that ensured they finished fourth in the section, with Hearts bottom.
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