Europa League - Qualifying Second Round - 1st Leg
Hibernian3Asteras Tripolis2

Hibernian 3-2 Asteras Tripolis: Hosts come from 2-0 down to win

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Highlights: Hibernian 3-2 Asteras Tripolis

Hibernian produced a sensational fightback to take a narrow lead into the second leg of their Europa League tie with Asteras Tripolis.

The hosts - ponderous and slack - trailed 2-0 at the break to a Georgios Kyriakopoulous double.

But back roared Hibs, Efe Ambrose Boyle and David Gray levelling the match.

Asteras lost Triantafyllos Pasalidis to a late red card, and Florian Kamberi sparked wild celebrations in Leith with a stoppage-time winner.

The decisive meeting takes place in Athens next Thursday, with the winners facing Norway's Molde or Albanians Laci in the third round of qualifying. The Norwegians hold a 3-0 lead from the first leg.

Slick Asteras punish Hibs

The technically slick and savvy Greeks were impressive in the opening period, picking off pedestrian play by Hibs and exposing their brittle defence.

With 12 minutes gone, Michalis Manias played the ball through the legs of Efe Ambrose down the left flank and into the path of the speeding Kyriakopoulous. The winger strode clear of back-tracking Hibs defenders, and from an acute angle, beat Adam Bodgan at his near post.

Steven Whittaker and Kamberi spurned glorious chances to equalise, and Neil Lennon's men were soon made to pay for their wastefulness.

Kyriakopoulos was allowed to advance on the home backline, and from over 20 yards, unleashed a wicked, swerving drive that zipped past Bogdan.

Hibs looked feeble. There was little pace to their play and even less precision in their passing. At half-time, their European campaign already looked in grave jeopardy.

Bizarre goal sparks the recovery

If they had been wayward before the break, the hosts emerged for the second half imbued with all the aggression and pep missing from their first-half display.

Gray replaced the ineffectual Whittaker, with Vykintas Slivka shifting into a more natural central position. And in the 64th minute the home crowd at last had something to cheer.

Ambrose met a Stevie Mallan corner, the ball struck the crossbar, bounced back off the Nigerian defender and bobbled into the net.

That bizarre goal swung the momentum Hibs' way. Slivka sent a free header fizzing high and wide from deep inside the box. Martin Boyle menaced down the left. McGinn and Mallan began seizing control of the midfield battleground.

It was Gray, etched in Hibs history for his Scottish Cup-winning goal two years ago, who further endeared himself to the Leith faithful. The club captain controlled Lewis Stevenson's cross from the left, set himself, and hammered his shot back across goal and in.

Easter Road erupted. The players - and the fans - sensed an improbable victory could yet be theirs.

Pasalidis was shown a second yellow for a cynical foul on Slivka. And Kamberi, in the third minute of stoppage time, flicked Boyle's saved shot into the empty Asteras net, completing a remarkable comeback.

They lost two away goals, but this night of enthralling drama in Leith ended with a precious lead for Hibs to take to Athens.

Line-ups

Hibernian

  • 31Bogdan
  • 3WhittakerSubstituted forGrayat 45'minutes
  • 4HanlonSubstituted forPorteousat 90+4'minutes
  • 10BoyleBooked at 66mins
  • 8Slivka
  • 25Ambrose
  • 7McGinnBooked at 57mins
  • 16StevensonBooked at 57mins
  • 14Mallan
  • 24McGregorBooked at 74mins
  • 22Kamberi

Substitutes

  • 2Gray
  • 6Bartley
  • 11Swanson
  • 21Laidlaw
  • 26Martin
  • 32Shaw
  • 36Porteous

Asteras Tripolis

  • 30Athanasiadis
  • 4PasalidisBooked at 84mins
  • 14BellocqSubstituted forRolleat 55'minutes
  • 5Triantafyllopoulos
  • 11Manias
  • 8Munafo Horta
  • 17Iglesias
  • 19TsilianidisSubstituted forChristopoulosat 86'minutes
  • 77Kyriakopoulos
  • 23KaltsasSubstituted forMartínezat 77'minutes
  • 27Kotsiras

Substitutes

  • 1Papadopoulos
  • 6Valiente
  • 22Rolle
  • 28Douvikas
  • 33Martínez
  • 45Christopoulos
  • 90Bastianos
Referee:
Andreas Ekberg
Attendance:
14,148

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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