Atletico open Europa League account

Holders Atletico win first game this term while Swiss second division side Lausanne draw with Sparta in Prague.

Atletico Madrid held off Rosenborg to earn a win, leaving them one point behind leaders Bayer Leverkusen [Reuters]

Holders Atletico Madrid have won for the first time in the Europa League this season, beating Rosenborg 3-0, while Emmanuel Adebayor scored a hat-trick as Manchester City beat Lech Poznan 3-1.

Swiss second division side Lausanne, trailing 3-1 at Sparta Prague after 23 minutes, hit back to draw 3-3 in the night’s shock result while Italy’s four teams all failed to win.

Palermo produced the worst performance of the quartet, losing 3-0 at home to CSKA Moscow, while Napoli were held to a goalless draw by visitors Liverpool.

Zenit St Petersburg, VfB Stuttgart, Porto and Sporting all won to maintain 100 per cent records after three games along with CSKA.

Atletico, who took just one point from their first two Group B games, went ahead with a header by Uruguay defender Diego Godin in the 18th minute at home to Rosenborg, who are unbeaten in their 27 Norwegian league matches this season.

Argentina forward Sergio Aguero came off the bench and immediately slipped between two defenders to add the second goal in the 66th and Diego Costa headed home the third to put Atletico back in contention to qualify for the knockout stage.

Atletico are one point behind leaders Bayer Leverkusen who drew 0-0 at Aris Salonika.

Adebayor hat-trick

Togo striker Adebayor sent City top of Group A and handed Poland’s Lech Poznan their first defeat.

Adebayor turned past Lech captain Bartosz Bosacki before slotting home his first goal of the season in the 13th minute and headed winger David Silva’s pinpoint cross into the bottom corner 12 minutes later.

Joel Tshibamba replied for the Poles after halftime but Adebayor restored City’s two-goal lead from another Silva pass.

The group’s other game saw Juventus draw 1-1 at winless Salzburg, halftime substitute Milos Krasic scoring early in the second period for the former European champions after Dusan Svento had given the Austrian champions a 36th-minute lead.

“All teams at this level will put us in difficulties,” said frustrated Juventus coach Luigi Del Neri, whose side are third having drawn all three games.

“If we play like this at the start of matches, we risk going out.”

That was as good as it got for the Italian clubs. Napoli were held at home by a Liverpool side who rested captain Steven Gerrard and striker Fernando Torres but did enough to stay top of Group K with five points, two clear of Napoli and Utrecht.

Sampdoria lost 2-1 at 10-man Metalist Kharkiv in Ukraine despite going ahead through Vladimir Koman in the 32nd minute of the Group I match.

Brazilian Taison equalised but was sent off in the 55th minute after tangling with Massimo Volta but his compatriot Cleiton Xavier got the winner with an acrobatic bicycle kick.

Palermo humiliated

Ivorian striker Seydou Doumbia scored twice and substitute Tomas Necid added the third as Group F leaders CSKA Moscow humiliated Palermo with a 3-0 away win.

The group saw the night’s biggest upset with Brazilian Silvio scoring in the sixth minute of stoppage time to give Lausanne their first point at Sparta Prague.

Goals from Sparta’s Ivorian Wilfried Bony either side of Juraj Kucka’s 20th-minute effort put the Czechs 3-1 up after Sebastien Meoli had headed the Swiss into an early lead.

Lausanne’s Martin Steuble set up a nervy final 15 minutes with a sublime curling effort before Silvio turned the ball in from close range to level the scores after Meoli had diverted Nicolas Marazzi’s freekick against the bar.

Group G leaders Zenit, champions in 2008 when the tournament was in its previous guise as the UEFA Cup, enjoyed a comfortable 2-0 win at home to Croatia’s Hajduk Split.

VfB Stuttgart, bottom of the Bundesliga, shrugged off the poor domestic form that last week cost coach Christian Gross his job to beat Getafe 1-0 in Group H with a Ciprian Marica goal in the 29th minute.

Brazilian forward Hulk scored two second-half goals to help Porto win 3-1 at Besiktas in Group L and Group C leaders Sporting thumped Gent 5-1 for the night’s biggest win, Liedson scoring twice.

Source : Reuters

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