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Kozák earns Lazio draw in Gladbach thriller

VfL Borussia Mönchengladbach 3-3 S.S. Lazio
Libor Kozák nodded in a 94th-minute equaliser to secure a first-leg draw for the Biancocelesti at the end of an action-packed affair in Germany.

Libor Kozák is congratulated after scoring Lazio's late equaliser
Libor Kozák is congratulated after scoring Lazio's late equaliser ©Getty Images

Substitute Libor Kozák headed an equaliser in the fourth minute of stoppage time to earn a draw for ten-man S.S. Lazio in a remarkable UEFA Europa League game at VfL Borussia Mönchengladbach.

Juan Arango appeared to have won this round of 32 first leg for the hosts with a 30-metre free-kick with two minutes of normal time remaining, but Kozák grabbed his second of the night in injury time to secure the visitors a share of the spoils. In a fantastic match Mönchengladbach were awarded three penalties, scoring two, yet Sergio Floccari added to Kozák's double to give Lazio three away goals to take back to Rome.

It took the arrival of the German side's 300th goal in UEFA competition to kick-start the tie, with chances coming thick and fast after Lazio's André Dias had brought down Patrick Herrmann in the area, allowing Martin Stranzl to smash in from the spot after 17 minutes.

Arango rattled the Lazio post with a wicked free-kick before Ştefan Radu somehow headed over from close range for the Serie A team. The Biancocelesti were level on 57 minutes, though, when Floccari made a surging run into the box to volley in Antonio Candreva's perfect cross from the right. Shortly afterwards Kozák guided Senad Lulić's cross past Marc-André ter Stegen to put Lazio ahead.

With 20 minutes to go Stranzl had the chance to restore parity after Dias gave away his second penalty of the night and duly received his marching orders. However, the errant Brazilian was redeemed by his goalkeeper, Federico Marchetti, who flung himself to his right to turn away the Borussia captain's effort. Stranzl subsequently hit the post, before another substitute Thorben Marx stepped up to the spot to equalise after Lorik Cana had bundled over Luuk de Jong for a third home spot kick.

Arango's outrageous free-kick then appeared to have won it, but up popped Kozák to thump in Hernanes's cross with the final act, leaving it all square after a breathless night.

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