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Nine-man Sparta see off Lech

KKS Lech Poznań 0-1 AC Sparta Praha (agg: 0-2)
The Czech side ended with nine men but nevertheless progress to the play-offs, Jiří Kladrubský's penalty adding to their first-leg advantage.

Jiří Kladrubský (No15) scores the decisive penalty
Jiří Kladrubský (No15) scores the decisive penalty ©Cyfrasport

AC Sparta Praha ended with nine men but nevertheless secured a 1-0 win on the night which gave them a 2-0 aggregate victory in their UEFA Champions League third qualifying round tie against KKS Lech Poznań.

Sparta held the narrowest of leads following last week's first leg in Prague but doubled their overall advantage five minutes after half-time in the decider. Even though Jiří Kladrubský's penalty left Lech needing three goals to progress, it was still far from plain sailing for Sparta. Both sides had a man sent off with ten minutes remaining – captain Bartosz Bosacki for the hosts and Marek Matějovský for the away side – before Sparta were further depleted when Libor Sionko was dismissed soon after.

Sparta started in equally flustered fashion, Erich Brabec inadvertently heading against the frame of his own goal with just four minutes gone. They soon found their feet, though, and were unfortunate not to go ahead, Matějovský's rasping strike well saved by Krzysztof Kotorowski.

There was nothing the Lech goalkeeper could do just after the break, however, Kladrubský converting from the spot after Bosacki had felled Václav Kadlec. Bosacki's night took a further turn for the worse on 80 minutes when he and Matejovsky were given their marching orders. Sionko followed suit five minutes later but Sparta had already done enough to book a place in Friday's play-off draw.