Benfica overwhelm Everton as Shakhtar and Hamburg impressOctober 23rd, 2009 - 3:33 pm ICT by IANS
Hamburg, Oct 23 (DPA) Benfica trounced English Premier League side Everton 5-0 in Europa League group football action while Shakhtar Donetsk put four past hapless Toulouse and SV Hamburg edged Celtic.
Shakhtar, winners of the last ever UEFA Cup final in 2009, Thursday showed why they are one of the favourites to win this year’s replacement tournament with a demolition of their French opponents in Group J.
Fernandinho gave the Ukrainians an early lead from the penalty spot, with a Luiz Adriano brace divided by a goal from Tomas Huebschman completing the rout.
Donetsk now have a perfect nine points from three games, followed by Toulouse on five, level with Club Brugge after the Belgians beat Partizan Belgrade 2-0.
Everton went into the game at the Estadio de Luz having won their opening two matches in Group I but were outclassed by the Portuguese giants on a night David Moyes’ side will want to forget.
Javier Saviola put Benfica ahead on the quarter-hour mark but the real damage was done in seven hectic minutes at the start of the second half when Tim Howard was beaten three times as the Everton defence went absent without leave.
The impressive Angel Di Maria twice set up Oscar Cardozo before an unmarked Luisao then made it 4-0 with a looping header. The impressive Angel Di Maria squared for Saviola to tap the ball into an empty net for Benfica’s fifth.
The result sees Benfica draw level with Everton on six points, three clear of AEK Athens and BATE Borisov, who beat their Greek opponents 2-1 in the other group game.
Celtic’s hopes of progressing to the knockout stages from Group C took a severe blow as Tony Mowbray’s side were beaten 1-0 at home by SV Hamburg. Marcus Berg scored the all-important goal after some neat build-up play with Ze Roberto.
Hapoel Tel Aviv are ahead of Hamburg on goal difference at the top of the group after thumping Rapid Vienna 5-1 while Celtic remain bottom with just a single point.
Dusan Svento scored the only goal of the game as FC Salzburg beat Levski Sofia 1-0 to maintain their perfect start to Group G.
Salzburg sit top on nine points, three clear of Lazio, who managed a 2-1 victory over Villarreal despite playing for half the second half with only 10 men after Francelino Matuzalem was dismissed for a second bookable offence.
Mauro Zarate put the Italians in front after 20 minutes but Sebastian Eguren equalized for Villarreal shortly before the break.
However, as it looked like the game would finish all-square, Tommaso Rocchi netted a last-minute winner for the Serie A side.
Sheriff Tiraspol got their first win in Group H with a surprise 2-0 defeat of Dutch side Twente Enschede. Fenerbahce now lead the group on six points, two clear of Sheriff and Twente, after beating Steaua Bucharest 1-0 in Romania through Kazim Kazim.
Sparta Prague revived hopes of qualifying from Group K with a 2-1 win against CFR Cluj while Jonathan Reis scored the winner and missed a penalty as PSV Eindhoven beat FC Copenhagen 1-0.
The win sees PSV stay top of the group with seven points, followed by Sparta on four, one ahead of Cluj and Copenhagen.
Werder Bremen remain unbeaten in Group L after a 2-2 draw with Austria Vienna. The Germans now have seven points but are only one ahead of Athletic Bilbao after the Basques beat Nacional Funchal 2-1.
A last-minute strike from Marco Andreolli salvaged a 1-1 draw for AS Roma against Fulham in Group E. Brede Hangeland put the Cottagers in front but were reduced to 10 men when Stephen Kelly saw a straight red for fouling John Arne Riise in the area.
However, Jeremy Menez’s resultant penalty was well saved by Mark Schwarzer. Basel beat CSKA Sofia 2-0 in the other group game.
Sporting Lisbon maintained their 100-per-cent record in Group D with a 2-1 victory against Latvian side Ventspils while struggling Hertha Berlin’s poor domestic form followed them into Europe as the Bundesliga’s bottom club lost 1-0 at home to Heerenveen.
Both sides finished with 10 men after Hertha’s Patrick Ebert and Heerenveen’s Daryl Janmaat received red cards.
Galatasaray stay top of Group F on seven points after a 4-1 victory over Dinamo Bucharest while Panathinaikos move second on six after a 1-0 win against Sturm Graz.
In Group A, Anderlecht and Timisoara played out a scoreless draw while Ajax beat Dinamo Zagreb 2-1. Lille sit top of Group B courtesy of a 3-0 win against Genoa after Valencia could only draw 1-1 with Slavia Prague.
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Tags: aek athens, bate borisov, club brugge, david moyes, english premier league, fernandinho, football action, goal difference, group game, hapoel tel aviv, knockout stages, league group, luisao, marcus berg, oscar cardozo, rapid vienna, shakhtar, sv hamburg, tim howard, tony mowbray