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Zenit hit Liverpool with double whammy

Published: Thursday 14 February 2013, 19.50CET
FC Zenit St Petersburg 2-0 Liverpool FC
The Russian title holders will take a healthy lead to Anfield after scoring quickfire second-half goals through the impressive Hulk and Sergei Semak.
Zenit hit Liverpool with double whammy
Hulk put Zenit ahead with an unstoppable strike ©AFP/Getty Images

Match statistics

ZenitLiverpool

Goals scored2
 
0
Attempts on target6
 
2
Attempts off target3
 
4
Corners7
 
4
Offsides1
 
5
Fouls committed13
 
10
Yellow cards2
 
1
Red Cards0
 
0

Standings

 
Published: Thursday 14 February 2013, 19.50CET

Zenit hit Liverpool with double whammy

FC Zenit St Petersburg 2-0 Liverpool FC
The Russian title holders will take a healthy lead to Anfield after scoring quickfire second-half goals through the impressive Hulk and Sergei Semak.

FC Zenit St Petersburg scored two goals in four second-half minutes to earn a significant advantage against Liverpool FC in their UEFA Europa League round of 32 first leg in Russia.

UEFA Cup winners in 2008, Zenit conjured 69th and 72nd-minute goals through Hulk and Sergei Semak to start their 2013 campaign on a high. The double whammy came at a time when the hosts were struggling to match their first-half showing – but leaves the English club with much to do at Anfield next Thursday.

Zenit, refugees from the UEFA Champions League, forced early saves from Pepe Reina through Aleksandr Kerzhakov and Hulk. In response, Liverpool danger man Luis Suárez, whose late free-kick might have reduced arrears, bobbled a shot beyond Vyacheslav Malafeev but wide.

Suárez was presented with an even better chance by Nicolas Lombaerts' careless pass, yet his seemingly clear run on goal was complicated by a bumpy pitch and ended with ball and man being escorted out by Lombaerts.

If Hulk's penalty-area incursion was well read by Jamie Carragher, the same player bounced a shot against Reina's near post. By the half-hour mark, Luciano Spalletti's reigning Russian champions were asking questions of Liverpool with their fluid, intricate raids from midfield.

After Joe Allen's cross caused havoc at the other end, Raheem Sterling pulled the ball back for Suárez, whose flick flew centimetres wide. Brendan Rodgers' Group A winners nearly scored soon after half-time too when Glen Johnson's marauding run culminated in an attempt parried by Malafeev.

Suárez drifted another strike wide as Liverpool showed no signs of a hangover from Monday's Premier League home defeat by West Bromwich Albion FC. However, just when Zenit were beginning to toil in their first competitive outing of the year, Hulk picked up possession in midfield, surged upfield and powered a 20-metre shot past Reina.

Incredibly, one became two within three minutes. Aleksandr Anyukov's centre somehow evaded the visiting back line, enabling unmarked Sergei Semak to crash in a second at the far post.

Last updated: 16/02/13 0.10CET

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http://www.uefa.com/uefaeuropaleague/season=2013/matches/round=2000357/match=2010038/postmatch/report/index.html#reds+zenit+double

Lineups

zenit

Zenit

liverpool

Liverpool

16
MalafeevVyacheslav Malafeev (GK)
25
ReinaPepe Reina (GK)
2
AnyukovAleksandr Anyukov
2
G. JohnsonGlen Johnson
6
LombaertsNicolas Lombaerts
3
EnriqueJosé Enrique
10
DannyDanny
Substitution54
7
SuárezLuis Suárez
11
KerzhakovAleksandr Kerzhakov
Substitution82
8
GerrardSteven Gerrard (C)
13
Luís NetoLuís Neto
Yellow Card83
14
HendersonJordan Henderson
14
HubočanTomáš Hubočan
Yellow Card59
19
DowningStewart Downing
15
ShirokovRoman Shirokov (C)
23
CarragherJamie Carragher
27
DenisovIgor Denisov
24
AllenJoe Allen
28
WitselAxel Witsel
31
SterlingRaheem Sterling
Substitution78
29
HulkHulk
Goal69
37
ŠkrtelMartin Škrtel
Yellow Card17

Substitutes

30
ZhevnovYuri Zhevnov (GK)
1
JonesBrad Jones (GK)
20
FayzulinViktor Fayzulin
Substitution82
16
CoatesSebastián Coates
21
RodićMilan Rodić
21
LucasLucas
Substitution78
24
LukovićAleksandar Luković
29
BoriniFabio Borini
25
SemakSergei Semak
Substitution54
Goal72
30
SusoSuso
77
DjordjevićLuka Djordjević
33
ShelveyJonjo Shelvey
94
EvseevAleksei Evseev
47
WisdomAndre Wisdom

Coach

Luciano Spalletti (ITA) Brendan Rodgers (NIR)

Referee

Carlos Velasco Carballo (ESP)

Assistant referees

Roberto Alonso (ESP), Juan Yuste (ESP)

Fourth official

José Miranda (ESP)

Additional assistant referees

Carlos Del Cerro (ESP), Javier Estrada (ESP)

Legend:

  • GoalsGoals
  • Own goalOwn goal
  • PenaltiesPenalties
  • Missed PenaltiesMissed Penalties
  • reds_cardRed Cards
  • yellow_cardsYellow cards
  • yellow_red_cardsYellow/red card
  • SubstitutionSubstitution
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