|I||Sparta Praha||19:00||H. Kiryat Shmona|
Late efforts from Marlos and Cleiton Xavier allowed FC Metalist Kharkiv to come from behind at Rosenborg BK and take a firm grip on one of the qualifying berths on offer in UEFA Europa League Group K.
Beaten at home by Bayer 04 Leverkusen on matchday two, Rosenborg struck first when Tarik Elyounoussi chipped in just after half-time, but the Norwegian hopefuls paid the price for failing to add to their lead when Marlos levelled nine minutes from time. That was bad enough for the hosts, yet, eight minutes later, Cleiton's long-range free-kick gave Metalist all three points and moved them four ahead of their opponents ahead of the reverse fixture on matchday four.
As the match kicked off, falling snow made conditions difficult for the players on either side, so it was perhaps little surprise that both attacks attempted to exploit the treacherous surface with low shots from distance. Rade Prica tested Metalist goalkeeper Olexandr Goryainov, before Rosenborg's Daniel Örlund had to fling himself at full stretch to touch behind a low, skidding effort from Taison.
The home side wasted little time breaking the deadlock as the second half kicked off. Prica's clever flick found John Chibuike, who drew defenders to him before slipping a pass through for Elyounoussi to calmly lift a shot over Goryainov. The goalkeeper then denied Prica and Chibuike, and those saves proved crucial when Taison fed Cristian Villagra down the right, with Marlos advancing untracked to apply a simple close-range finish to his pass.
Jonathan Cristaldo then wriggled away from a posse of defenders and only the right-hand post kept out his fierce shot. There was to be no such escape for Rosenborg in the 89th minute, however, as Cleiton's free-kick from 30 metres evaded Örlund to nestle in the corner of the net and complete a memorable turnaround.
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