Europa League - Qualifying Second Round - 2nd Leg
Linfield1Spartak Trnava3

Linfield 1-3 Spartak Trnava

Spartak skipper Erik Sabo celebrates after scoring one of his two goals
Spartak skipper Erik Sabo celebrates after scoring one of his two goals

Irish Premiership side Linfield crashed out of the second qualifying round of the Europa League 5-2 on aggregate after losing 3-1 to Slovakia's Spartak Trnava in the second leg in Belfast.

The hosts went in a goal up at half-time thanks to Stephen Lowry's strike from close range in the 34th minute.

Erik Sabo levelled with a low shot and Jakub Vojtus slotted home on the hour.

Milan Bortel was sent off for a second yellow card offence, then Sabo netted his second of the night on 84 minutes.

Trailing by a single goal from the first leg, but with an away goal to their credit, Linfield started the game brightly in front of a large home support of 3000 at Windsor Park.

The first chance of the game fell to the visitors though, but a 25-yard effort from Emir Halilovic whistled wide of Ross Glendinning's right-hand post.

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Linfield boss Warren Feeney saw his side lose 5-2 on aggregate

Guy Bates looked to be fouled in the area but penalty appeals were waved away, before Lowry's well-struck shot hit the post with goalkeeper Adam Jakubech beaten.

That close call proved to be only a temporary reprieve for Spartak as Lowry fired in the opening goal after David Kee's corner was not dealt with.

Just before the break, Vojtus headed straight into the arms of Glendinning.

On the resumption, the Blues' keeper did well to help a long-range Lukas Gressak attempt over the bar, but skipper Sabo rifled in the equaliser from outside the box.

Spartak went in front on the night and established a two-goal lead in the tie when Vojtus ran from inside his own half and slotted past Glendinning from just outside the six-yard box.

Soon after, the same player saw a fierce shot from the edge of the box cannon off the left-hand post after getting the better of Matthew Clarke.

Garsia Casado then hit the post from close range, while, at the other end, Andrew Waterworth slipped when Chris Hegarty squared the ball to him as the Blues attempted to earn some respite.

Following Bortel's dismissal, Sabo made his side's passage into the third round safe with a neat finish.

Guy Bates congratulates Linfield goalscorer Stephen Lowry
Guy Bates congratulates Stephen Lowry after his first-half goal which looked to have earned Linfield a good chance of winning the tie

Scores, Results & Fixtures

Thursday 23rd July 2015

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