Europa League - Qualifying Second Round - 1st Leg
Olimpija Ljubljana5Crusaders1

Crusaders beaten 5-1 by Olimpija Ljubljana in Europa League first leg

Jordan Forsythe's goal cut Olimpija Ljubljana's lead to 3-1 but the Slovenian champions hit two further late goals
Jordan Forsythe netted for Crusaders with a deflected effort in the second half

Crusaders lost 5-1 to Olimpija Ljubljana in the Europa League second qualifying round first leg in Slovenia.

Declan Caddell missed a great Crusaders chance after Kingsley Boateng had put the home side ahead on 30 minutes.

Matic Crnic curled in Ljubljana's second on 56 minutes before Boateng netted his second on 68.

Crusaders responded with Jordan Forsythe's deflected effort but Crnic and Haris Kadric completed the scoring.

After their 7-0 away hammering by Bulgarian club Ludogrets on the way to a 9-0 aggregate defeat in the Champions League first qualifying round, this was a more competitive Crusaders performance as they frustrated the Slovenians for long periods.

But Ljubljana responded to Forsythe's 73rd-minute goal with two late strikes to almost certainly put the tie out of reach before next Thursday's second leg as Crnic exploited a lapse of concentration to fire in after a quickly taken free-kick and Kadric then netted in injury-time.

Crues restrict Slovenians to 1-0 half-time lead

With inspirational skipper Colin Coates back in the centre of the Crues defence after missing both games against Ludogorets, the visitors were well organised in the opening half.

Ljubljana's early passing fluency soon became ragged as they resorted to lumping in long balls into the Crusaders defence which were meat and drink to Coates and his central defensive partner Howard Beverland.

At the other end, a Crues break set up a chance for Michael Carvill in the 20th minute but his left-foot shot from the edge of the box was a foot over the crossbar.

Ljubljana needed Boateng's brilliant finish to the roof of the net to take the lead on 30 minutes but the Crues should have got on terms six minutes later as Caddell fired straight at keeper Aljaz Ivacic after a defensive mistake had put him in the clear.

David Cushley produced a few promising moments for Crusaders
David Cushley attempted to beat the Ljubljana keeper with an audacious lob just after half-time

Ljubljana's late goals put them in control

The Crues continued to have their moments after the resumption with David Cushley almost catching out Ivacic with an audacious lob from his own half after picking up the ball on the edge of his own penalty area.

But once again, Ljubljana were able to conjure a superb finish for their second goal as Crnic curled in a glorious strike from outside the box after the Crusaders defence had appeared to halt an attack.

Asmir Suljic's defence-splitting pass put Boateng in the clear to slot his second goal of the night only for Forsythe to reply five minutes later with his deflected effort.

A 3-1 defeat would have kept Crues hopes alive but as their concentration wavered, Crnic hammered in his second following a quickly-take free kick before Kadric poked in Ljubljana's fifth goal in injury-time after Sean O'Neill had been unable to hold substitute Stefan Savic's low shot.

The Slovenians are now in a strong position to set up a third qualifying round tie with the losers of the Champions League tie between BATE Borisov or HJK Helsinki.

Line-ups

Olimpija Ljubljana

  • 31Ivacic
  • 23Kapun
  • 8Miskic
  • 3Bagnack
  • 27Zarifovic
  • 29Crnic
  • 95AvramovskiSubstituted forSavicat 79'minutes
  • 30Ilic
  • 21BoatengSubstituted forKadricat 86'minutes
  • 90TomicBooked at 62minsSubstituted forSuljicat 64'minutes
  • 44Stiglec

Substitutes

  • 2Maksimenko
  • 9Vombergar
  • 10Brkic
  • 15Suljic
  • 22Kadric
  • 41Vidmar
  • 77Savic

Crusaders

  • 1O'Neill
  • 8Ward
  • 2Burns
  • 7LowrySubstituted forClarkeat 73'minutes
  • 4Beverland
  • 6CoatesBooked at 77mins
  • 10Carvill
  • 11CushleySubstituted forHeatleyat 59'minutes
  • 19SnoddyBooked at 76mins
  • 12CaddellSubstituted forBrownat 82'minutes
  • 14ForsytheBooked at 71mins

Substitutes

  • 15Holden
  • 16Owens
  • 17Ruddy
  • 20Brown
  • 22Heatley
  • 25Clarke
  • 26Doherty
Referee:
Enea Jorgji
Attendance:
2,980

Scores, Results & Fixtures

Thursday 26th 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

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