FK Zeta of Montenegro, NK Dinamo Zagreb and FC BATE Borisov from Belarus overcame setbacks to reach the UEFA Champions League second qualifying round.
Six teams qualified for the second qualifying round of the UEFA Champions League tonight, including FC BATE Borisov of Belarus, who overturned a 2-0 deficit from their first leg against APOEL FC of Cyprus. FK Zeta also survived a scare to earn a tie against Rangers FC, while Croatia's NK Dinamo Zagreb were pushed all the way by opponents from Azerbaijan before progressing in extra time.
FC BATE Borisov 3-0 APOEL FC (agg: 3-2 aet)
BATE clinched a second round meeting with either FH Hafnarfjördur or HB Tórshavn after staging a remarkable recovery to overturn a two-goal first-leg deficit before winning the tie in extra time though Gennadi Bliznyuk. Spurred on by noisy home support, the Belarussians found hope on the quarter-hour as left-back Igor Stasevich's low shot fizzed into the net. The visitors were on course for an aggregate win, though, until 15 minutes from the end when substitute Dmitri Platonov levelled the tie after racing on to Dmitri Likhtarovich's through ball. The hosts went into the additional half-hour full of confidence and turned that into a winning goal a minute before the second half-time break as Bliznyuk pounced from close range.
<NK Dinamo Zagreb 3-1 FK Khazar Lenkoran (agg: 4-2 aet)
Dinamo Zagreb will face either NK Domžale or KF Tirana in the second qualifying round but they were forced into extra time before eventually overcoming ten-man Khazar. Goals by Mario Mandžukić (100) and Josip Tadić (116) edged them into the next stage but the Croatian side had it all to do after repeating their error of the first leg by going behind against their Azerbaijani visitors. Brazilian midfielder Junior struck in spectacular fashion for Khazar with a ferocious 35-metre free-kick that completely caught goalkeeper Georg Koch off guard on 16 minutes. The home side struggled to find their rhythm until eleven minutes after the break when Davor Vugrinec headed in Mario Mandžukić's pinpoint cross. As in the first leg Khazar were once more reduced to ten men, when Edmond N'Tiamoah was sent off in the 79th minute, and it was a setback from which they never really recovered.
FBK Kaunas 3-2 FK Zeta (agg: 4-5)
Having scored an away goal with Zeta 3-0 ahead in last week's first leg, Kaunas built on that strike in the early stages tonight when an aggressive and attacking approach yielded three goals in the opening 20 minutes. The first was scored by Ričardas Beniušis as he headed in a Nukri Manchkhava cross after seven minutes, to be followed ten minutes later by Givi Kvaratskhelia's angled drive from the corner of the area. Two quickly became three as Audrius Ksanavicius provided the final touch to a sweeping counter (20), although that was to prove the high point for the Lithuanian side, who saw a Pascal Mendy penalty saved in the 41st minute. By that point Slaven Stjepanović (33) had levelled the aggregate scores and, amid pouring rain and lightning, Marko Ćetković struck the decisive blow in the final minute. The Montenegrin team will meet Scotland's Rangers FC in the next round.
FC Astana 3-0 FC Olimpi Rustavi (agg: 3-0)
Astana became the first Kazakh team to reach the second qualifying round after overcoming ten-man Olimpi with a fine second-leg performance. Most of the damage had been done even before visiting forward Rezo Djikia was sent off early in the second half as goals by captain Aleksandr Kuchma (14) and Arsen Tlekhugov (52) brought the hosts ever closer to an encounter with Rosenborg BK, a date which was sealed when Murat Suyumagambetov headed in Eduard Sergienko's centre late in the match.
FC Rànger's 0-3 FC Sheriff (agg: 0-5)
After an evenly-balanced first half Sheriff added to their two goals from the first leg to complete a comfortable aggregate success and earn a tie against Beşiktaş JK of Turkey, which promises to be a considerably trickier affair. Rànger's were missing two players sent off in the first leg, Gregorio Rodriguez and Sergio Albanell, and the visitors confirmed their superiority with a determined display after the break which brought goals for Benjamin Balima (68), Sasa Kajkut (72) and Alexandru Suvorov (84).
FK Sarajevo 3-1 Marsaxlokk FC (agg: 9-1)
This was a tie already put well beyond doubt in Malta last week but Marsaxlokk put up much sterner resistance before experiencing defeat again in Sarajevo. The score remained goalless until three minutes before half-time when Mirza Mešić broke the deadlock with a spectacular free-kick fom the edge of the penalty area. Zdravko Šaraba doubled the lead on 61 minutes but the visitors found a response within four minutes through Cleaven Frendo. However, Almir Turković ensured the Bosnia-Herzegovnian outfit had the last word, with an emphatic volley on 76 minutes, leaving the Sarajevo side brimming with confidence ahead of their meeting with KRC Genk of Belgium.