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Sturm go through after stern test in Hungary

Videoton FC 3-2 SK Sturm Graz (agg: 3-4)
With all five goals coming in an eventful first half, the visitors held on to claim a narrow aggregate win and a place in the third qualifying round.

Sturm's Manuel Weber (left) takes on Videoton's André Alves
Sturm's Manuel Weber (left) takes on Videoton's André Alves ©AFP

SK Sturm Graz twice came from behind against Videoton FC before suffering a narrow defeat which was insufficient to prevent them from reaching the UEFA Champions League third qualifying round.

With the game goalless heading towards the half-hour mark, a 3-2 scoreline at the break seemed unlikely before Ákos Elek's 27th-minute effort. Andreas Hölzl responded immediately for the visitors but the Hungarian outfit regained the lead through György Sándor. Sturm captain Ferdinand Feldhofer equalised six minutes before the break, yet there was still time for Videoton to forge ahead through Zoltán Lipták.

Having suffered a 2-0 defeat in Austria last week, the onus was on the hosts to attack. They did just that and were rewarded when Elek opened the scoring on 27 minutes after some neat build-up play involving André Alves. However, the lead lasted less than a minute, Hölzl timing his run to perfection to turn in Patrick Wolf's cross.

Videoton remained undeterred and were ahead again four minutes later, Sándor collecting Elek's long pass before driving past a helpless Christian Gratzei. The Austrian champions were back on level terms when Feldhofer tapped in the rebound after Tomáš Tujvel spilled Hölzl's corner.

Paulo Sousa's side were not to be denied, though. Two minutes into first-half stoppage time Lipták guided Álvaro Brachi's tempting centre past Gratzei to give his side an interval lead. Sturm understandably tightened up in the second half and restricted their opponents to Sándor's 71st-minute strike, which flew narrowly wide.

Franco Foda's charges closed out the remaining minutes for a tie with FC Zestafoni, who are at home in the first leg on 26/27 July before the return in Austria a week later.