AS Nancy-Lorraine's European adventure will continue into the new year after the UEFA Cup newcomers beat ten-man Feyenoord 3-0 to earn a place in the last 32.
The match at Nancy's Marcel Picot stadium was interrupted in the 80th minute when, with trouble breaking out in the stands, tear gas drifted on to the pitch, affecting both players and officials. Play eventually resumed, however, and Nancy secured a memorable victory over the two-time UEFA Cup winners.
By the time of the interruption, Nancy were well on course for their second success in the group stage and qualification for the knockout rounds having taken a three-goal lead through Sébastien Puygrenier, an André Bahia own goal and Monsef Zerka's penalty. Feyenoord veteran Pierre van Hooijdonk had a late spot-kick stopped by Olivier Sorin but by then the game was up for Erwin Koeman's side, who were reduced to ten men by Royston Drenthe's dismissal on the hour.
Feyenoord may have gone into the contest undefeated in Group E after two successive draws but they had no answer to Nancy's high-tempo approach. Although Angelos Charisteas flashed a long-range shot just over the crossbar in the opening minutes, that was as good as it got for the Dutch team. Pablo Correa's men made a deserved breakthrough on 22 minutes following a Michaël Chrétien free-kick from the right of the Feyenoord area. Chrétien pulled the ball back to Emmanuel Duchemin and though his effort was blocked, Pascal Berenguer drove the rebound towards goal and Puygrenier stuck out a foot to turn it in.
Nancy's second goal also came from a set-piece as Bahia headed Chrétien's corner past his own goalkeeper, Henk Timmer, at the near post shortly before the break. Timmer was beaten again on 66 minutes after Karim Saidi was penalised for climbing over Zerka as the pair contested a high ball and the Nancy man slotted home. While the French side - in their first European campaign since 1978/79 - join Blackburn Rovers FC on seven points at the top of Group G, Feyenoord face Wisla Kraków in their final fixture on 13 December needing to win to progress.
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