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Holders CSKA held by Heerenveen

November 04, 2005 11:36 IST

UEFA Cup holders CSKA Moscow suffered another setback to their hopes of progressing from the group stage after they were held to a 0-0 draw by Heerenveen on Thursday.

CSKA, beaten 2-1 at home by Olympique Marseille in their opening fixture, struggled to break down a resolute Dutch side and had to withstand strong late pressure to take home a point.

"We were the only team that played to win and we deserved three points, but after all I can live with a draw against such a dangerous opponent," said Heerenveen coach Gert Jan Verbeek.

The draw leaves CSKA, poised to secure their second Russian title in three years this weekend, with one point from two matches in Group F and needing positive results in the final two fixtures at home to Levski Sofia and away against Dinamo Bucharest.

Former European champions Steaua Bucharest moved top of Group C on four points despite being held to a 0-0 draw by Sampdoria in Genoa.

Steaua created the best chances with midfielder Banel Nicolita shooting narrowly wide on the half hour and striker Victoras Iacob firing over the bar when one-on-one against keeper Luca Castellazzi.

Gabon striker Daniel Cousin hit a hat-trick for Racing Lens in a 5-0 demolition of Halmstad in the other Group C encounter.

Hamburg made it two wins from two to go top in Group A with a 2-0 home win over Viking Stavanger, Dutch midfielder Rafael van der Vaart and Benjamin Lauth getting the goals for the side who are third in the Bundesliga.

Basel picked up their first points in Group E thanks to a late winner against Red Star Belgrade. Argentine Julio Rossi pounced two minutes from time after a neat back-heel from Matias Delgado to hand the Swiss side a 2-1 victory.

Former European champions Red Star, who led through Milan Purovic before Delgado levelled, were ordered by UEFA to play the game behind closed doors after crowd disturbances in a qualifying round tie.


Frenchman Jean Tigana's first game in charge of Besiktas ended in a 3-0 defeat at Sevilla in Group H. Tigana, who became Besiktas's third coach this year on Monday, watched his side concede three second-half goals, striker Frederic Kanoute grabbing a brace.

Argentine international Javier Saviola broke the deadlock when he fired a close-range shot under Besiktas keeper Oscar Cordoba after a neat headed assist from Kanoute in the 64th minute.

Kanoute made it 2-0 a minute later when he headed home after good work from midfielders Fernando Sales and Daniel Alves.

The former Tottenham Hotspur striker wrapped up an emphatic win a minute before the final whistle when he picked up a neat pass from Alves in the area, clipped the ball round Cordoba and slotted home.

Also in Group H, Bolton Wanderers overcame Zenit St Petersburg 1-0 in farcical conditions at the Reebok stadium, with continuous heavy rain making the pitch almost unplayable.

Kevin Nolan fired home the only goal from close range on 24 minutes after Kamil Contofalsky had parried a shot from Stelios Giannakopoulos.

Middlesbrough made it a double success for Premier League sides, Australian striker Mark Viduka scoring twice in a 3-0 home victory over Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk. Middlesbrough top Group D with a maximum six points.

Shakhtar Donetsk struck twice on the break to clinch a 2-0 win away to VfB Stuttgart and go top of Group G, a result that will turn up the heat on coach Giovanni Trapattoni.

Brazilian midfielder Fernandinho got the opener in the 31st minute, heading past Stuttgart's reserve keeper Dirk Heinen after a fine cross from Darijo Srna had picked him out.

Stuttgart kept pressing forward only to be hit on the counter-attack again two minutes from time, with Ciprian Marica breaking through the middle and slipping his shot past Heinen.


Justin Palmer
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