Tonight’s heroes in the UEFA Champions League play-off first leg are two Russian stars: Kerzhakov, who scored the only goal in Zenit’s victory against Auxerre and Pavlyuchenko, who scored Tottenham’s second in the 2-3 defeat away to Young Boys, giving the London side a chance in the second leg.
FC Zenit St. Petersburg got off to a great start against French side Auxerre, with the only goal of the match coming after three minutes – Kerzhakov was the scorer. In the game in Switzerland between Young Boys Berne and Tottenham Hotspur FC (England), the local side got off to a three-goal start within the first half-hour. Lulivc (4), Bienvenu (13) and Hochstrasser (28) were the scorers but the Premier League team led by Harry Redknapp fought back with two goals, Bassong (42’) and the Russian striker Roman Pavlyuchenko (83’), a good away result.
In the other matches in the first leg of the play-off phase of the Champions League, Dynamo Kyiv (Ukraine) fought back for a home draw against Dutch side Ajax after the visitors scored through Vertonghen (57’).Gusev scored the home team’s goal (66’).
Norway’s Rosenborg beat neighbouring Denmark’s Kobenhavn by just 2-1, goals from Iversen (23’) and Henriksen (57’) for the home side before Gronkjaer pulled one back for the visitors on 84’.
In the remaining match, a Czech-Slovakian derby, where Slovakia’s Zilina went to Prague to beat Sparta 2-0, goals from Ceesay (51’) and Oravec (73’).