The UEFA Europa League second qualifying round continued with first-leg wins for FC Rubin Kazan, FK Crvena zvezda and R. Standard de Liège, while Rosenborg BK lost at home.
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The UEFA Europa League second qualifying round saw first-leg victories for the likes of FC Rubin Kazan, FK Crvena zvezda and R. Standard de Liège, while Debreceni VSC were denied by a late equaliser and Rosenborg BK lost at home.
Rubin made the perfect start to their European campaign, racing into a two-goal lead against FK Jagodina inside 21 minutes thanks to strikes by Aleksandr Prudnikov and Bebras Natcho. However, Dario Damjanović and Milos Lepovic struck either side of José Rondón's 87th-minute goal to give the hosts some hope ahead of next week's return.
Crvena zvezda saw off the challenge of Hermann Hreidarsson's ÍBV Vestmannaeyjar with goals in either half from Nejc Pečnik and Nikola Mijailović, while Standard Liège, now with Guy Luzon at the helm, had to come from behind to win 3-1 at KR Reykjavík.
Arguably the biggest upset of the first-leg games came at Rosenborg where the 22-time Norwegian champions succumbed to Saint Johnstone FC. The Scottish side, who were eliminated at the same stage last term by Eskişehirspor from Turkey, will have a 1-0 advantage to defend in the return thanks to Frazer Wright's 18th-minute goal. Luxembourg's FC Differdange 03 also had a night to remember, coming from behind to beat FC Utrecht 2-1 with two Omar Er Rafik goals.
An Ibrahim Sidibe double had seemingly set 2009/10 UEFA Champions League group stage participants Debrecen on their way to a slender 2-1 victory at Strømsgodset IF only for the Norwegian team to grab an added-time equaliser through Péter Kovács. Czech side AC Sparta Praha were also held to a 2-2 draw as they surrendered a two-goal lead at home to Sweden's BK Häcken.
Croatia's HNK Rijeka were the night's biggest winners putting five past Prestatyn Town FC without reply with three of their goals scored by the head of Leon Benko. Poland's WKS Śląsk Wrocław also secured a handsome home win beating FK Rudar Pljevlja 4-0. Romanian outfit FC Petrolul Ploieşti marked their first UEFA competition game in 18 years with a 3-0 home triumph over Víkingur from the Faroe Islands.
Hapoel Tel-Aviv FC were the biggest winners away from home, beating Bulgaria's PFC Beroe Stara Zagora 4-1 thanks largely to two goals from Omer Damari. FC Dila Gori will also have a three-goal advantage to take into their second leg after scoring three unanswered goals at home to Aalborg BK.
Elsewhere, there was an eventful game in Slovenia where NK Olimpija Ljubljana beat MŠK Žilina 3-1 with both sides ending the game with ten men. FC Irtysh Pavlodar edged out NK Široki Brijeg in a five-goal thriller and there were away wins for NK Lokomotiva Zagreb and KKS Lech Poznań.