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Thursday, October 20, 2005 

Fenerbahce 3 - 3 Schalke 04 (CL)

A frustrating yet thrilling match under the ever pouring rain ended 3-3 with a manic second half, as Schalke 04 equalised to Fabio Luciano’s header then took the lead after a spell of pressure. Marcio Nobre then put us back on level terms, before a nightmare scenario occurred for Volkan Demirel, as he rushed out of his goal and missed the ball, letting in Kevin Kuranyi to score probably the easiest goal of his career. Stephen Appiah however scored a much more complex goal, launching a sensational dipping shot from outside the area for the sixth goal of the match.

The weather conditions never eased throughout the night and softened an already cut-up pitch. Both sides were aware of the danger though, attempting to block any long shot that would be trick on the goalkeepers. Volkan became an unfortunate victim of a combination of bad timing and slipperiness in the second half.

The visitors were certainly the more attacking side at the start of the game and didn’t allow us to build up play and enter their final third. A dead ball situation was our chance to make our presence known. Alex de Souza made sure a good chance was created, whipping in a great ball from the right for Luciano to head in at the front post in the 18th minute.

Nobre was a second behind the ball when Nicolas Anelka squared it to him in the box in a quick attack capitalising on a loss of possession by Schalke. The Brazilian swung his left foot but he could only manage to clip the ball and a chance to double the lead was waved goodbye.

Schalke eventually shook off the goal and began driving through our midfield. Marco Aurelio picked up a booking which summed up the pressure our team was under. Önder Turacý was frequently called upon to make last ditch challenges, as did the goalscorer Luciano, blocking Ebbe Sand in what was a sure goal at the half-hour mark.

Christian Poulsen’s header onto one of many corners called for a good Volkan save, who was nearly facing the threat of Rafinha, as he skipped past our defenders and struck a shot that hit the side netting in the 23rd minute.

Nobre had an even better chance than his previous one to give us a second goal, when Alex coolly played him in for a one-on-one situation with Frank Rost, but our man hit straight into the oncoming Rost to the surprise of our fans.

Aurelio forced a corner at the start of the second half with a low drive, but Schalke continued their pressure from the first half and had our players chasing, until the expected equaliser came in the 59th minute through Lincoln. The midfielder managed to scrap the ball amongst two of our players, fitting a left foot shot on the end of it to beat Volkan. Three minutes later he added another, this time hitting Soren Larsen’s pass into the bottom right hand corner.

A change had to be made by Christoph Daum, who called for Tuncay Þanlý to put on his shirt and enter the game. He certainly added some energy to our play, and it was his header back into the area after a cleared corner which Nobre did excellently to jump and head over Rost to make it 2-2.

Such a dramatic game unfortunately included a howler, which Volkan performed, presenting Kuranyi with a free goal for the Germans to take the lead again.

Stephen Appiah, who shrugged off a touch of concussion minutes earlier, managed to sweetly launch a great shot two minutes later, which had enough pace and height to go over Rost and dip back into the net.

The rain continued, but the storm of goals ended with Appiah’s product. The worst news from the night however, was Alex’s sending off minutes from the final whistle, as he picked up his second booking, made easier by Levan Kobiashvili’s theatrics. Alex will miss the reverse of this fixture, sure to be even tougher than tonight’s.

Goals: Fabio 14´(1-0), Lincoln 59´(1-1); Lincoln 62´(1-2), Marcio 73´(2-2), 77´ Kunaryi (2-3), Appiah 79´(3-3)

Source: fenerbahce.org


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