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Wednesday, August 24, 2005 

HSV in the UEFA Cup!

HSV battled their way to a superb 0-0 draw away to the Spanish giants Valencia on Tuesday evening (23.08.05), and in doing so, qualified for the UEFA Cup competition. After deservedly winning the first leg 1-0 in the AOL Arena, HSV produced a gritty defensive performance, allowing Valencia very few chances over the 90 minutes. 800 HSV fans made the trip to Spain, and they were not to be disappointed!

Kluivert goes close
The Spaniards only had one clear chance during the first half. Dutch star Patrick Kluivert hit the bar with the HSV keeper Wächter beaten. In injury time at the end of the second half, Wächter saved his side by making a stunning save from Vicente. There were scenes of HSV jubilation in front of the 43,000 strong stunned home crowd. After the match the HSV coach Thomas Doll was delighted with how his side performed: "I am proud of my team. Everyone gave everything right until the end, we deserve this success."

Welcome back Paule
Thomas Doll was able to recall his veteran midfielder Stefan Beinlich for the game in the famous "Estadio Mestalla". Beinlich tore a muscle during the first leg tie, but intensive treatment by the club medical staff ensured that he would make the starting line-up in Valencia. Striker Sergej Barbarez was suspended for the match after being sent off in the first leg clash. The Bosnian was handed a two match ban by UEFA. His place in the starting line-up went to Benny Lauth. The Spanish coach picked Ruben Baraja and Pablo Aimar to face HSV.

Attacking home side
As expected, the home side attacked HSV from the off, withAimar pulling the strings in midfield. On 9 minutes, the Argentinean Rufete, fired in a shot which Stefan Wächter was equal to. After 15 minutes though, Wächter was powerless as Kluivert headed against the HSV crossbar. After those early chances, HSV found their way into the game, although nothing much was happening up front: "We had planned to do more up front, but as the game progressed it became increasingly important to work hard at the back." Patrick Kluivert was taken off at half time, after failing miserably against his compatriot Khalid Boulahrouz

HSV chances
The second half began like the first, with the home side trying to breach the HSV defence, without it must be said, much success. It took until the 63rd minute for them to create a chance through Baraja. As the game progressed HSV began to create chances of their own. On 69 minutes several HSV players failed to connect with a swinging corner driven in by Rafael van der Vaart, and seconds later, Benny Lauth missed a good chance after superb approach work by Thimothee Atouba.

Wächter saves the day!
Valencia couldn’t find a way through the well-marshalled HSV defence, but seconds before the end, Wächter saved superbly from Vicente to save the day for his team. As the match referee Duhamel blew for time, there were in credible scenes of jubilation as the HSV players and staff celebrated what was a deserved success when one considers both legs.

FC Valencia: Canizares - Moretti, Ayala, Albiol, F.Aurelio - Albelda, Baraja (71.di Vaio) - Rufete (57.Angulo), Aimar, Vicente - Kluivert (46.Villa)

HSV: Wächter - Demel (59.Reinhardt), Boulahrouz, van Buyten, Atouba - Wicky, Beinlich (46.Mahdavikia), Jarolim (85.Trochowski), van der Vaart - Lauth, Mpenza

Source: HSV.de

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