Europa League - Qualifying First Round - 1st Leg
Cliftonville0FC Nordsjælland1

Europa League: Cliftonville 0-1 FC Nordsjælland

Media playback is not supported on this device

Watch: Cliftonville slip to Nordsjælland defeat

Cliftonville were narrowly beaten by FC Nordsjælland in the first leg of their Europa League first-round qualifier.

Andreas Olsen's first-half goal was enough to clinch a 1-0 victory for the Danish side at Solitude.

Cliftonville's best chance fell to Garry Breen in the second-half but the defender was unable to steer his header on target.

The Reds must now try to overturn the defeat when the two teams meet in the return leg on 19 July.

Cliftonville boss Barry Gray had described the visit of the Danish Superliga club as a chance for his players to test themselves against a full-time team and the hosts showed no sign of inferiority as they immediately took the game to their guests.

The north Belfast outfit won an opening corner that was headed clear and Conor McMenamin also had an early header that missed the target.

But Nordsjælland soon found their rhythm with James Harney and Breen forced to make a series of clearances as the visitors began to increase the pressure.

The breakthrough goal came in the 19th minute after Godsway Donyoh pounced on a poor clearance and played a pass through to Olsen, who calmly finished past Brian Neeson.

The Danes continued to control possession for the remainder of the half without threatening to add to their tally as the Reds appeared happy to defend with bodies back behind the ball.

Neeson was called into action at the start of the second half when he made a spectacular save to deny Karlo Bartolec's goal-bound effort and from the resulting corner Donyoh's shot was blocked by Levi Ives.

The home side pushed further forward in the final half-hour and were almost rewarded when a quick free kick found McMenamin in space but his effort was deflected towards Breen, who could not keep his header on target.

Line-ups

Cliftonville

  • 13Neeson
  • 6Harney
  • 9Curran
  • 3Ives
  • 2McGovernBooked at 35minsSubstituted forCatneyat 62'minutes
  • 4Breen
  • 7Curran
  • 24McMenaminSubstituted forGarrettat 74'minutes
  • 11Donnelly
  • 16Bagnall
  • 19Gormley

Substitutes

  • 10Garrett
  • 14McDonald
  • 17Catney
  • 20Dunne
  • 22Lavery
  • 25Donnelly
  • 37McNulty

FC Nordsjælland

  • 18Larsen
  • 4NelssonBooked at 82mins
  • 7Rygaard JensenSubstituted forJakobsenat 87'minutes
  • 2Bartolec
  • 10Jensen
  • 16Hansen
  • 11DonyohSubstituted forFreseat 71'minutes
  • 27Damsgaard
  • 5Pedersen
  • 17Skovgaard
  • 21Skov OlsenSubstituted forRasmussenat 57'minutes

Substitutes

  • 3Jenssen
  • 14Rasmussen
  • 15Aaquist
  • 19Jakobsen
  • 28Vindahl Jensen
  • 34Frese
  • 38Antwi
Referee:
Sandor Szabo
Attendance:
1,170

Scores, Results & Fixtures

Thursday 12th July 2018

As It Stood

A

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Villarreal6321106411
2FC Astana6312107310
3Slavia Prague62226608
4Maccabi Tel-Aviv611418-74

B

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Dynamo Kiev6411159613
2Partizan Belgrade622289-18
3Young Boys613278-16
4Skenderbeu6123610-45

C

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Sporting Braga631298110
2Ludogorets62317529
3Istanbul Basaksehir622278-18
4Hoffenheim6123810-25

D

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1AC Milan6321136711
2AEK Athens61506518
3HNK Rijeka62131112-17
4Austria Vienna6123916-75

E

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Atalanta64201441014
2Lyon6321114711
3Everton6114715-84
4Apollon Limassol6033514-93

F

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Lokomotiv Moscow632194511
2FC Copenhagen62317349
3Sheriff Tiraspol62314409
4Zlín6024110-92

G

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Viktoria Plzen6402138512
2Steaua Bucharest631297210
3Lugano6303911-29
4Hapoel Be'er Sheva6114510-54

H

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Arsenal64111441013
2Red Star Belgrade62313219
3Köln620478-16
4BATE Borisov6123616-105

I

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1RB Salzburg633071612
2Marseille62224408
3Konyaspor613246-26
4Vitória Guimarães612359-45

J

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Ath Bilbao632185311
2Östersunds FK632184411
3Zorya Luhansk620439-66
4Hertha Berlin612367-15

K

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Lazio6411127513
2Nice630312759
3SV Zulte Waregem6213813-57
4Vitesse6123510-55

L

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Zenit St Petersburg65101751216
2Real Sociedad64021661012
3Rosenborg6123611-55
4Vardar6015320-171
View full Europa League tables

Top Stories