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Maher gives AZ edge over Anderlecht

Published: Thursday 16 February 2012, 21.10CET
AZ Alkmaar 1-0 RSC Anderlecht
Adam Maher prised the only goal from a tense contest as the visitors' perfect record in this season's competition was ended by the Dutch outfit.
Maher gives AZ edge over Anderlecht
Adam Maher (left) scored the only goal in Alkmaar ©Getty Images

Match statistics

AZAnderlecht

Goals scored1
 
0
Attempts on target6
 
2
Attempts off target5
 
1
Corners7
 
0
Offsides3
 
3
Fouls committed19
 
13
Yellow cards2
 
2
Red cards0
 
0

Standings

 
Published: Thursday 16 February 2012, 21.10CET

Maher gives AZ edge over Anderlecht

AZ Alkmaar 1-0 RSC Anderlecht
Adam Maher prised the only goal from a tense contest as the visitors' perfect record in this season's competition was ended by the Dutch outfit.

AZ Alkmaar earned a 1-0 advantage to take to Belgium for their UEFA Europa League round of 32 return against RSC Anderlecht thanks to Adam Maher's first-half effort.

The visitors arrived in the Netherlands as the only side to have won all six group games but they rarely looked like extending that sequence and were undone when Maher grabbed his third goal of their European campaign after 35 minutes.

Brett Holman would have been celebrating an early opener had he redirected Maarten Martens' cross effectively but that proved the only opportunity of a cagey first half-hour. The hosts would have remained confident of prising an opener before the interval – seven of their ten group stage goals arrived between the 16th and 45th minutes – and their belief was substantiated as they struck ten minutes before the interval when Maher convincingly dispatched Simon Poulsen's left-wing cross from close range.

A second could easily have followed before the break as Holman sliced over from the edge of the area while Charlison Benschop missed his kick from five metres after a powerful run and cut-back from Holman. Ariël Jacobs introduced Olivier Deschacht, on his 31st birthday, at half-time and the competition's leading scorer Matías Suárez just before the hour, but the attacking prowess that had seen Anderlecht rack up a group stage best 18 goals remained lacking.

Les Mauves et Blancs had to wait until the 83rd-minute to carve out a presentable chance and Guillaume Gillet would have levelled had his header from Dieudonné Mbokani's cross not picked out goalkeeper Esteban Alvarado. Gertjan Verbeek's men sensed a telling second goal was for the taking against an out-of-sorts away side but it proved evasive as Jozy Altidore rifled wide while Martens' fierce drive was repelled by Silvio Proto in the closing stages.

Last updated: 18/02/12 0.14CET

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http://www.uefa.com/uefaeuropaleague/season=2012/matches/round=2000273/match=2007426/postmatch/report/index.html#maher+edges+az+ahead

Lineups

az

AZ

anderlecht

Anderlecht

34
EstebanEsteban (GK)
1
ProtoSilvio Proto (GK)
3
MarcellisDirk Marcellis
Yellow Card80
5
BigliaLucas Biglia (C)
4
ViergeverNick Viergever
11
JovanovićMilan Jovanović
8
MaherAdam Maher
Goal35
16
KouyatéCheikhou Kouyaté
11
MartensMaarten Martens
19
KljestanSacha Kljestan
15
S. PoulsenSimon Poulsen
20
SafariBehrang Safari
Substitution46
20
ElmRasmus Elm
23
JuhászRoland Juhász
23
BeerensRoy Beerens
25
MbokaniDieumerci Mbokani
Yellow Card89
25
MoisanderNiklas Moisander (C)
27
WasilewskiMarcin Wasilewski
Substitution90
27
HolmanBrett Holman
Substitution78
30
GilletGuillaume Gillet
35
BenschopCharlison Benschop
Substitution76
55
Fernando CanesinFernando Canesin
Substitution59

Substitutes

21
HeijblokErik Heijblok (GK)
22
SchollenDavy Schollen (GK)
6
ReijnenEtienne Reijnen
3
DeschachtOlivier Deschacht
Substitution46
7
GudmundssonJohann Gudmundsson
Substitution78
Yellow Card89
6
MbenzaBedi Mbenza
10
FalkenburgErik Falkenburg
8
OdoiDenis Odoi
Substitution90
14
KlavanRagnar Klavan
9
SuárezMatías Suárez
Substitution59
Yellow Card84
17
AltidoreJozy Altidore
Substitution76
14
KabanguPatou Kabangu
26
OrtizCelso Ortiz
21
De SutterTom De Sutter

Coach

Gertjan Verbeek (NED) Ariël Jacobs (BEL)

Referee

Florian Meyer (GER)

Assistant referees

Jan-Hendrik Salver (GER), Mark Borsch (GER)

Fourth official

Peter Sippel (GER)

Additional assistant referees

Deniz Aytekin (GER), Tobias Welz (GER)

Legend:

  • GoalsGoals
  • Own goalOwn goal
  • PenaltiesPenalties
  • Missed PenaltiesMissed Penalties
  • reds_cardRed Cards
  • yellow_cardsYellow cards
  • yellow_red_cardsYellow/red card
  • SubstitutionSubstitution
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