MICHAEL HADLEY - Friday, October 5, 2012
The Yanks participating in the Europa League faced various levels of success and adversity in their second week of group stage action.
Hapoel Kiryat Shmona FC 3 - 4 Olympique Lyonnias
Bryan Gerzicich returned from injury for Shmona as they fell in injury time to the French team Lyon in a wild seven-goal thriller.
The hosts got the scoring going early when Shimon Abuhatzira netted in the seventh minute after being set up by Adrian Rochet, but the lead would be short lived.
Before the half, Lyon would score three times, all within 14 a minute period. Gueida Fofana struck from 20 yards in the 17th minute, then Luciano Fabian Monzon hit a free kick five minutes later to give his team the lead.
Then two minutes past the half-hour, Anthony Reveillere struck from ten yards to seemingly hand the French team the sure victory.
Taking a 3-1 deficit into the break, HKS came out with something to prove, and came within seconds of salvaging a point.
Lior Levi scored just six minutes into the second half, and Abuhatzira added a penalty conversion to his score sheet in the 66th minute after Itkhak Cohen was brought down by Bakary Kone.
But Fofana would steal all three points from a desperate Israeli club, scoring the game winner in the 92nd minute from a corner, completely deflating any confidence moving forward for Kiryat Shmona.
Gerzicich played the full ninety minutes, failing to appear on the official scorers record.
Shmona are now third place in the group, and will have a two-week break before facing Ashdod in league play.
Hannover 96 2 - 1 Levante
Despite falling to ten men before the tenth minute, Steve Cherundolo and Hannover slide their way to the top of Group L with a victory over Levante in Germany.
Levante were awarded a penalty early when Karim Haggui pulled down his man in the Hannover box, sending the Tunisian off with a red card. Michel buried the chance from 12 yards, giving the visitors an early 1-0 lead.
But the penalty would be revenged ten minutes later when Levante defender Vincente Iborra was cited for an accidental handball in the area, and Szabolcs Huszti made no mistake to pull the Germans even at one a piece.
After the break, it was Hannover who came out more prepared, and it showed in a quick goal from emergency wing Didier Yan Konan who capitalized on chaos in the box, tapping home a six-yard shot.
Cherundolo commanded the Reds from his position at right back for the entire 90 minutes, helping keep shape after Haggui, starting right-center back, was ejected.
Hannover now lead Group L, but will have more important matters on their mind in the near future as they must host reigning Bundesliga champions Dortmund in the coming weekend.
Panathinaikos 1 - 1 Tottenham Hotspur
Michael Dawson played both hero and accidental villain for Tottenham as they drew with Panathinaikos in Athens.
Clint Dempsey's new team got on the board first after a back-and-forth first half.
After earning a free kick outside of the box on the left attacking flank, Tom Huddlestone spun his attempt into the mixer where captain Michael Dawson was able to redirect the ball into the back of the net.
Dempsey played dangerously both in the first and second halves, coming close from long range on multiple attempts.
After the American was substituted off in the 67th minute, the hosts saw opportunity, pressing until Tottenham finally broke.
Dawson misplayed his defender in the 77th minute, allowing Jose Toche to race around the captain and score the equalizer, sending Gate 13 into frenzy.
With two points from two games, Tottenham are in third place in Group J, behind both Lazio and Maribor. They face off against Aston Villa this weekend in Premier League action.
Alejandro Bedoya of Helsingborgs played part of the first half against Twente before leaving with a rib injury suffered in a collision. The sides drew 2-2.
Mikkel Diskerud did not dress for Rosenborg in a 1-0 loss to Leverkusen, citing a leg injury.
Terrence Boyd was an unused substitute in the Rapid Vienna's 1-0 defeat at Metalist.
Josh Gatt played eight minutes as a substitute against Stuttgart, seeing his team score an insurance goal in his time as well as securing the 2-0 victory.