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City news, 22.02.2008 10:11

Zenit survive Spanish scare

Nine-man Zenit St Petersburg survived a scare against Villarreal as they progressed on away goals following a 2-2 aggregate draw.

Having secured a surprise 1-0 first-leg victory in Russia, it was Zenit who again opened the scoring at the El Madrigal stadium.

Zenit, who qualified from Group A alongside Everton, were grateful to Pavel Pogrebniak who was in the right place at the right time on 31 minutes to open the scoring.

Pogrebniak scored the only goal of the game in the first-leg and the striker was again on hand to head in a Radek Shirl cross.


However, two minutes after the interval Roman Shirokov - who had been booked in the 13th minute - received his second yellow card to put Zenit under pressure.

Villarreal then set up a grandstand finish as Guillermo Franco headed in a cross from Nihat Kahveci to equalise on the night with 15 minutes remaining.

And Zenit became increasingly nervous with in the 82 minute as Shirl received his second booking to send his side down to nine-men.

Striker Jon Dahl Tomasson then hit Villarreal's second as he blasted past Zenit goalkeeper Vyacheslav Malafeev from close range on the stroke of full-time.

However, the La Liga side could not find the third they needed to progress and it is Zenit who will meet Marseille in the last 16.

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(c) 2000