Champions League - Qualifying - First Round - 2nd Leg
Levadia Tallinn1Crusaders1
Crusaders win on away goals

Champions League: Crusaders beat Levadia on away goals

Michael Carvill scored a vital goal for Crusaders
Michael Carvill scored the crucial goal for Crusaders in Tallinn

Irish Premiership side Crusaders sealed a place in the second qualifying round of the Champions League by beating Levadia Tallinn on away goals.

After a 0-0 draw in the first leg, Michael Carvill's early strike proved vital in Estonia's national stadium.

The former Linfield front man struck in the fourth minute but Levadia equalised midway through the first half through a superb free-kick by Siim Luts.

Crusaders will play KF Skenderbeu of Albania in the second qualifying round.

"Levadia were a full-time team playing in their national stadium, but they did not hurt us," said Crues manager Stephen Baxter.

"They scored with a wonderful free-kick but we had the better chances.

"We did not get a lot of decisions and just hung in and hit the bar with five minutes to go."

The victory was worth around £140,000 in Uefa prize money to the Irish Premiership title holders.

Levadia, on a great run in their domestic league with seven successive victories, were favourites to see off the visitors from Belfast.

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Michael Carvill's goal proved crucial for Crusaders

But a fourth-minute goal by summer signing Carvill changed the complexion of the tie.

Impressive Crues winder Paul Heatley lobbed the ball over two defenders to release Carvill who finished past keeper Priit Pikker.

Carvill played a part in the 22nd-minute equaliser as it was his foul on Artur Pikk which led to the free-kick from which the hosts levelled matters.

Luts found the top corner of the net with a brilliant shot, Crues keeper Sean O'Neill getting a touch on it.

Crusaders weathered Levadia pressure early in the second half and as time wore on the Northern Ireland team looked like pulling off a famous result.

Indeed, Baxter's men almost won the game on the night with Heatley's shot from the edge of the box striking the crossbar in the 86th minute.

Ingemaar Teever of Levadia in action against Crusaders defender Josh Robinson
Ingemaar Teever of Levadia in action against Crusaders defender Josh Robinson
Ingemaar Teever of Levadia competes for the ball against Jordan Owens of Crusaders
Ingemaar Teever of Levadia competes for the ball against Jordan Owens of Crusaders
Line ups

Scores, Results & Fixtures

Tuesday 7th July 2015

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