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Nazarenko sends Dnipro through

Thursday, 25 November 2004

By Igor Linnyk at Meteor stadium

[1] FC Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk secured their passage to the knockout stages of the UEFA Cup by recording their third successive Group C win, overcoming FK Austria Wien thanks to Serhiy Nazarenko's first-half strike.

Composed finish

[2] The Ukrainian midfield player confirmed his side's place in the first knockout round in the 20th minute, despatching a shot from the edge of the penalty area past a stranded Joseph Didulica in the Austria goal and into the corner of the net.

Opening goal

[3] Dnipro started quietly and had to rely on their well-disciplined defence to keep the visitors at bay, with Austria's Libor Sionko almost breaking through in the eighth minute. However, Dnipro soon came to life and took the lead midway through the half thanks to Nazarenko's unerringly finish. Twenty-five thousand fans celebrated the goal, and shortly after another roar from the stands accompanied goalkeeper Vyacheslav Kernozenko's save after Jocelyn Blanchard shot from distance.

Counter attack

[4] The remainder of the first half passed without incident but after the break both sides upped the tempo as the temperature dropped. Dnipro tried to counter every Austria attack by replying with efforts of their own, and on 58 minutes Nazarenko almost doubled their lead, wasting a chance when clean through on goal.

Austria danger

[5] The away side were still a threat and with nine minutes left substitute Vladimir Janocko unleashed a dangerous shot towards goal, but the ball flew narrowly wide. Blanchard forced a full-stretch save from Kernozenko a few minutes later, but Dnipro successfully defended their lead to maintain their perfect record. The Ukrainian side will go to Real Zaragoza on 1 December seeking a fourth victory, while Austria will seek to revive their own qualification hopes at home against Club Brugge KV on the same day.

Dnipro's Serhiy Nazarenko scored the decisive goal