A late header from centre-back Adil Rami eliminated Fenerbahçe SK and earned LOSC Lille Métropole a UEFA Europa League round of 16 tie with Liverpool FC.
Leading through Emre Belözoğlu's first-half strike, the hosts looked set to progress on away goals until, five minutes from time, Rami escaped his markers in the penalty area and nodded in Ludovic Obraniak's inswinging free-kick. The result continues Fenerbahçe coach Christoph Daum's miserable record against French opposition in European competition − he has yet to taste victory in six meetings with Ligue 1 sides.
A smouldering game burst into life when an effort from Daniel Güiza was disallowed after Emre's thunderous strike rattled the post and dropped invitingly for the Spanish striker in the area. Pierre-Alain Frau then hit the crossbar at the other end following a mazy run infield from the right, but it was Fenerbahçe who took the lead ten minutes before half-time. Alex's corner was headed out as far as Emre, and the 29-year-old's shot into the ground from outside the area skipped past an unsighted Mickaël Landreau.
Lille were indebted to Landreau for keeping the deficit down to one on the cusp of half-time when he somehow scrambled across goal to keep out Alex's diving header after the visitors had been caught out by a well-worked throw-in. With that reprieve fresh in their minds, Les Dogues upped their game after the break, with Volkan Demirel thwarting Franck Beria and Frau either side of a disallowed effort from Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
The chances continued to come Lille's way, however, with Eden Hazard the next to press Volkan into service after jinking inside from the left, and Aurélien Chedjou firing wide of the post. However, just as it seemed they would leave frustrated, Rami chose the perfect time to score his first UEFA club competition goal and set up a tie with Rafael Benítez's five-time European champions.
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