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Europa League

Petrovski Stadium (ATT 21,000) 14th February 2013 - Kick off 17:00 Ref: C Velasco Carballo

Zenit Zenit St. Petersburg vs Liverpool Liverpool

Zenit 2

Hulk (70)
S Semak (72)

ft

Live Commentary

This article updates itself. There is no need to refresh this page. Last Updated at 6:51 pm, February 14th 2013

  1. That's your lot and it's Zenit who take a two-goal advantage into next week's second leg at Anfield.

  2. 90+2

    Zenit initially look to be running the clock down in the corner then Hulk whips a cross in which Liverpool clear. Downing attacks down the right then cuts inside before Johnson is tackled.

  3. 90+1

    Fayzulin advances towards the Liverpool goal and smacks in a shot from 25 yards which deflects wide off Skrtel's shins for a corner.

  4. 90

    We'll have two minutes of added time here.

  5. 89

    Free-kick to Zenit just inside their own half as Carragher trips Hulk. Sensible foul that from Carragher as Hulk had turned him.

  6. 88

    Fayzulin looking to run the clock down in the corner but when he and Enrique tumble to the turf, the decision goes the way of the away side with Enrique tugged to the floor.

  7. 87

    Zenit knocking the ball around nicely, keeping Liverpool at arm's length where possible.

  8. 86

    Corner taken short and Zenit go right back to their central defenders to start again. Neto drifts a ball out to Hulk on the left but his angled ball is a little to heavy for Semak and Skrtel is alert to the danger, hacking it out for a throw.

  9. 85

    Heavy touch from Hulk allows Johnson to tackle back and nick the ball away, but it's a late corner for Zenit still.

  10. 84

    Suarez's free-kick is parried by Malafeev down to his left and Henderson can't latch onto the rebound, allowing Zenit to clear the danger.

  11. 84

    Neto convinced Suarez made the most of that one.

  12. 83

    Poor corner from Downing, gathered easily by Malafeev on the edge of his area. The ball's worked back to Suarez, though, and he draws a foul from Neto as he looks to pass it out to the right. Neto is booked. Dangerous free-kick this.

  13. 82

    Zenit replace Kerzhakov with Fayzulin.

  14. 81

    Corner to Liverpool down the right as Downing's cross strikes Hubocan and goes behind.

  15. 80

    Gerrard's free-kick strikes Suarez which rather takes the power off it and it drifts harmlessly through to Malafeev.

  16. 79

    Enrique draws a foul from Hulk halfway inside the Zenit half.

  17. 78

    Liverpool bring Lucas on for Sterling, who has been a peripheral figure throughout. Anyukov's darting runs have forced him back and he's had little impact going forward.

  18. 77

    It's all Zenit now. Get the impression they think they can finish the tie tonight and you'd have to say another goal would surely give them one foot in the next round.

  19. 76

    Shirokov looks to slide in Kerzhakov on the edge of the Liverpool box but the danger is cleared.

  20. 75

    Allen does well to deal with the corner but then runs himself into trouble as he looks to carry it clear.

  21. 74

    Anyukov hoists a ball forward for Kerzhakov but Carragher is wise to the danger and turns it behind for a corner. The veteran defender is absolutely raging at his team-mates further forward, who didn't close Anyukov down there.

  22. 73

    Johnson gets in behind his rival full-back down the Liverpool right but his ball in is blocked and Denisov carries it clear.

  23. 72

    GOAL - SEMAK. Unbelievable. Liverpool were on top before that Zenit goal and now they're two down. Anyukov's ball in from the right evades Skrtel and Kerzhakov centrally but Semak is quicker to react than Johnson and slides it past Reina to double Zenit's lead.

  24. 70

    Witsel cuts in and fires in a left-footed shot but it's cleared by the Liverpool defence. When the ball is worked back in Shirokov has just strayed beyond the last defender and the flag is up.

  25. 69

    GOAL - HULK. It's been Liverpool's half so far, but almost out of nothing they trail. Hulk powers a left-footed shot in from 25 yards which curls into the top-left hand corner of the net with Reina beaten all ends up. That's a wonderful strike.

  26. 67

    Shirokov tries to slide in Kerzhakov but the pass is just too heavy and slides out of play for a goal-kick. Nice idea, but the pass wasn't precise enough.

  27. 66

    Corner comes to nothing as Downing is caught offside as the ball is returned to him after taking it short.

  28. 65

    Corner to Liverpool down their right.

  29. 64

    Really poor from Zenit again as this time Hulk lazily gifts possession back to Liverpool.

  30. 63

    Poor kick-out from Reina - not helped by the pitch - screws out for a Zenit throw down their left.

  31. 62

    Johnson intercepts as Zenit try to break down their left.

  32. 61

    Zenit finally string a few passes together but then Hubocan gives the ball away and Liverpool are back in possession.

  33. 60

    Been really disappointed with Zenit since the break - they haven't come out firing that's for sure.

  34. 59

    Liverpool spring forward down the right and Downing slides the ball across to Suarez 19 yards out. He attempts to curl one back beyond the goalkeeper but sets it out too wide. Another cracking chance for Suarez goes abegging.

  35. 58

    Clear foul from Hubocan on Gerrard as he hauls the Liverpool captain back centrally. Free-kick and booking.

  36. 57

    Been a bit flat this second half, certainly when compared to the first.

  37. 56

    Suarez gets a free-kick just inside the Zenit half as Neto baulks him.

  38. 55

    Enrique does well to deal with the threat of Hulk as he tries to get in down the Zenit right.

  39. 54

    Zenit bring Semak on for Danny.

  40. 53

    Shirokov smacks in a shot from distance but it's never troubling Reina as despite dipping it's always going over the bar.

  41. 52

    Free-kick whipped in by Gerrard but it's a poor one and Zenit clear all too comfortably.

  42. 51

    Another free-kick to Liverpool - this in a more dangerous position - as Hubocan trips Downing as he tries to cut in from the left.

  43. 50

    Free-kick to Liverpool just inside the Zenit half as Anyukov is adjudged to have handled.

  44. 49

    Tremendous run forward from Johnson takes him right into the Zenit box but Malafeev comes out to block at the expense of a corner. Great stuff from Johnson that.

  45. 48

    Hulk tries to burst into the Liverpool box down the left but Enrique and Carragher combine to see off the danger.

  46. 47

    Ambitious attempt from Kerzhakov to outwit Enrique but the flick is easily read and Liverpool clear.

  47. 46

    Liverpool attempt to launch an early attack but the ball drifts harmlessly out down the left flank.

  48. 45

    Back under way.

  49. Sky Bet now go 7/4 Zenit, 11/8 the draw and 9/4 Liverpool. Luis Suarez is 6/1 to make it fourth time lucky by being the next goalscorer, while Hulk (Givanildo Vieira de Souza) is 7/1.

  50. That's half-time. Reina kept the game goalless with a couple of smart early saves while Suarez has had three decent chances at the other end. Enjoyable game so far - hope it continues.

  51. 45+2

    Hulk attempts an overly ambitious ball through to Shirokov but it's simple for Reina to gather unchallenged.

  52. 45+1

    Poor touch from Suarez allows Witsel to get in. Then Lombaerts marshals him well when the ball is worked back towards the Uruguayan.

  53. 45

    We'll have two minutes of added time.

  54. 44

    Downing cuts in on his favoured left foot and powers in a shot but it's always flying harmlessly well off target.

  55. 43

    Witsel's snapshot from around 25 yards is blocked by Skrtel.

  56. 42

    Zenit think they've forced a corner but the decision goes against Hulk and in Skrtel's favour. Both Hulk and his coach are visibly annoyed by that one.

  57. 41

    Lovely angled ball forward for Suarez by Gerrard but Neto and Lombaerts combine to good effect with Suarez left isolated against the two Zenit central defenders.

  58. 40

    That's three excellent chances Suarez has had in the first half - you'd have backed him to score at least one of them given the goalscoring form he's already shown this season.

  59. 39

    Allen gets forward to good effect and crosses well from the right. Lombaerts' header takes it away from Malafeev and Sterling turns it back across from the left to Suarez, who gets a strong flick to it but doesn't find the target with the goal gaping.

  60. 38

    Suarez looks to capitalise on a Neto error but Lombaerts is across quickly to come to the aid of his central-defensive partner.

  61. 37

    Suarez goes down under pressure from Neto as Enrique hoists a free-kick forward. Looks accidental as both had eyes on the ball but Suarez certainly isn't happy.

  62. 36

    Johnson looks to burst into the box from the second throw but he's well marshalled and the ball skips behind for a goal-kick.

  63. 35

    Johnson's throw is swept out of play by Neto for another Liverpool throw, this one deeper into Zenit territory.

  64. 34

    Rodgers certainly made use of that break in play with Henderson among those to get a message from the Liverpool manager.

  65. 33

    Danny leaves the field after treatment but he'll surely be OK to continue. Looked a sore one but nothing serious.

  66. 32

    Great block from Johnson as Danny looks to get a shot away. The Zenit man goes down in pain after kicking the bottom of Johnson's boot but play continues. When it eventually breaks back to Malafeev, he throws it out of play so Danny can get some treatment.

  67. 31

    Outrageous overhead effort from Kerzhakov from Hulk's right-wing cross but he barely even connects (if at all). Would have been a goal of the season contender.

  68. 30

    Momentum definitely in Zenit's favour at the moment, but that said Liverpool have looked dangerous themselves on the counter.

  69. 29

    Am told that despite my gut feeling, the linesman was absolutely right to flag for Suarez being offside. Well done that man.

  70. 28

    Zenit go so close to the breakthrough as Hulk's looping left-footed shot smacks against the post with Reina not looking entirely comfortable in dealing with it. The ball bounces across goal and away from danger.

  71. 27

    Much more comfortable save for Reina as he drops to his left to gather an Anyukov header from Danny's cross.

  72. 26

    Hulk powers down the Zenit left and turns outside of Carragher but the veteran defender is wise to it and nicks the ball away before clearing downfield.

  73. 25

    Free-kick to Zenit just inside the Liverpool half as Allen is pulled up for a foul on Hulk.

  74. 24

    Gerrard heads the ball through to Suarez but the flag is quickly up for offside. Not sure that was the correct decision at first glance but not sure how likely a replay is to confirm my gut feeling or otherwise.

  75. 23

    Enrique lofts one forward towards Suarez but the Uruguayan is penalised for his challenge on Anyukov.

  76. 22

    Gerrard curls the corner over but the referee spots an indiscretion from Skrtel as he climbs to meet the ball beyond the back post and Zenit clear via the free-kick.

  77. 21

    Suarez looks to spin away from Neto in the Zenit box but the defender turns the ball away, albeit at the expense of a corner.

  78. 20

    Patient play from Liverpool as they knock the ball around waiting for an opening. Hulk intervenes and thinks he's won a throw-in but the decision goes the other way.

  79. 19

    Corner comes to nothing but then Downing can't find Henderson with a pass inside as Liverpool look to get forward. Hulk pulls it back but it's behind Shirokov and Gerrard gets a toe in to clear the danger.

  80. 18

    Allen again caught on the ball around 25 yards out. Zenit knock it around confidently and Hulk forces a corner down the left.

  81. 17

    The Zenit free-kick rather peters out into nothing.

  82. 16

    Skrtel is the first man into the referee's notebook for a foul on Shirokov - went sliding in with studs showing and can have no real complaints about the yellow card that follows.

  83. 15

    Great chance for Liverpool goes abegging. A terrible pass from Lombaerts is intercepted by Suarez. He advances on Malafeev and rather than slotting it past him opts to go round him. But he just overruns the ball and can't turn it back goalwards with Lombaerts frantically sliding in in an attempt to redeem himself.

  84. 14

    Gerrard surges forward but there's a momentary breakdown in communication between him and Suarez and when Gerrard opts to shoot from distance it's easily blocked.

  85. 13

    Gerrard curls the ball into the Zenit box and Suarez gets his head to it but the Uruguayan can't get anywhere enough on it and the ball skips harmlessly behind for a goal-kick.

  86. 12

    Free-kick to Liverpool around 12 yards inside the Zenit half as Henderson draws a foul from Lombaerts with a neat touch.

  87. 11

    Danny looks to jink inside Johnson but the England full-back keeps his eyes on the ball and not the twinkling toes albeit he has to concede a throw-in.

  88. 10

    Hulk and Shirokov link up but the latter's shot is charged down.

  89. 9

    Lombaerts hoists one over the top for Hulk but he's eased away from the ball by Enrique, who wins a free-kick into the bargain.

  90. 8

    Allen is caught in possession by Witsel. Cheap concession of possession there - can't see Rodgers being too happy with that.

  91. 7

    Downing bursts forward out of midfield but Neto times his challenge to perfection to slide the ball out for a throw.

  92. 6

    Corner comes to nothing and again Suarez looks to spring on the counter. He can't get between left-back and centre-back, though, and Zenit clear the danger.

  93. 5

    Hulk advances to the edge of the Liverpool box and drills in a powerful left-footed shot which forces Reina to plunge away to his left to turn it behind for a corner. That's another excellent save from the Spaniard.

  94. 4

    Pitch not looking the best I've got to say. Probably no surprise though given how cold it's been in these parts lately.

  95. 3

    Really open game this one. Play quickly moves to the other end and Suarez turns this way and that to fashion a shooting opportunity for himself on the left-hand side of the box. The shot drifts agonisingly wide of the far post.

  96. 2

    Corner taken short and Hulk gets the cross in when it's worked back to him. Ball breaks to Kerzhakov and he gets a shot in but Reina pulls a really sharp save off plunging away to his right.

  97. 1

    Early attack from Zenit and they work the ball to Kerzhakov down the inside left channel. He tries to get inside Johnson, who intervenes at the expense of a corner.

  98. 0

    Liverpool get us under way. It's a chilly one.

  99. 16:58

    Teams just going through the usual pre-match rituals.

  100. 16:57

    Can tell you as kick-off approaches, Zenit are 6/4 with our friends at Sky Bet, the draw is 23/10 and Liverpool are rated 7/4 chances for the victory tonight. Zenit to be leading at HT and the draw at FT is a 14/1 shot.

  101. 16:43

    Brendan Rodgers says Liverpool want to 'really give it a go' in the Europa League - hence his strong team selection. He says Zenit have a 'hugely gifted squad' and this is a 'difficult game' for the Reds. He's hoping they keep it tight tonight.

  102. 16:36

    There have been plenty of fears expressed in the last couple of days but managing director Ian Ayre has just said Liverpool's players and staff are fully prepared for any incidences of racist abuse from sections of the crowd. The players have been told to report it to the referee for him to decide on what action is taken.

  103. 16:35

    Those team lists mean Martin Skrtel returns to the Liverpool starting line-up in the Petrovsky Stadium. The Slovakia international's inclusion is one of three changes from the side defeated by West Brom on Monday, with Joe Allen and Raheem Sterling also coming in as Daniel Agger, Lucas and Jonjo Shelvey drop out. Zenit, who have not played a competitive match for two months, name a side which includes big summer signings Hulk and Axel Witsel.

  104. 16:34

    Our referee tonight is Carlos Velasco Carballo from Spain.

  105. 16:33

    Liverpool: Reina, Johnson, Skrtel, Carragher, Jose Enrique, Gerrard, Allen, Henderson, Downing, Suarez, Sterling. Subs: Jones, Coates, Lucas, Borini, Fernandez Saez, Shelvey, Wisdom.

  106. 16:32

    The teams are in. Zenit St Petersburg: Malafeev, Aniukov, Luis Neto, Lombaerts, Hubocan, Shirokov, Denisov, Witsel, Hulk, Kerzhakov, Danny. Subs: Zhevnov, Faitzulin, Rodic, Lukovic, Semak, Djordjevic, Evseev.

  107. 16:30

    Evening all and welcome to our coverage of the Europa League round-of-32 first-leg clash between Zenit and Liverpool. Reece Killworth the man in the chair so get your emails in to me on reece.killworth@bskyb.com and I'll publish a selection of the best in the build-up to kick-off, which is 1700 GMT.

Matches

Tables

Europa League Group A

Europa League
Pos Team P Pts
1 Borussia Monchengladbach 6 12
2 Villarreal 6 11
3 FC Zurich 6 7
4 Apollon Limassol 6 3

Europa League Group B

Europa League
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1 Club Brugge 6 12
2 Torino 6 11
3 HJK Helsinki 6 6
4 FC Copenhagen 6 4

Europa League Group C

Europa League
Pos Team P Pts
1 Besiktas 6 12
2 Tottenham Hotspur 6 11
3 Asteras Tripoli 6 6
4 Partizan Belgrade 6 2

Europa League Group D

Europa League
Pos Team P Pts
1 Red Bull Salzburg 6 16
2 Celtic 6 8
3 Dinamo Zagreb 6 6
4 FC Astra Giurgiu 6 4

Europa League Group E

Europa League
Pos Team P Pts
1 Dynamo Moscow 6 18
2 PSV Eindhoven 6 8
3 Estoril 6 5
4 Panathinaikos 6 2

Europa League Group F

Europa League
Pos Team P Pts
1 Inter Milan 6 12
2 Dnipro 6 7
3 Karabakh-Azersun 6 6
4 St Etienne 6 5

Europa League Group G

Europa League
Pos Team P Pts
1 Feyenoord 6 12
2 Sevilla 6 11
3 Rijeka 6 7
4 Standard Liege 6 4

Europa League Group H

Europa League
Pos Team P Pts
1 Everton 6 11
2 Wolfsburg 6 10
3 Krasnodar 6 6
4 Lille 6 4

Europa League Group I

Europa League
Pos Team P Pts
1 Napoli 6 13
2 BSC Young Boys Bern 6 12
3 Sparta Prague 6 10
4 SK Slovan Bratislava 6 0

Europa League Group J

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Pos Team P Pts
1 Dynamo Kiev 6 15
2 Aalborg BK 6 9
3 FC Steaua Bucuresti 6 7
4 Rio Ave 6 4

Europa League Group K

Europa League
Pos Team P Pts
1 Fiorentina 6 13
2 Guingamp 6 10
3 PAOK Salonika 6 7
4 Dinamo Minsk 6 4

Europa League Group L

Europa League
Pos Team P Pts
1 Legia Warsaw 6 15
2 Trabzonspor 6 10
3 Lokeren SNW 6 10
4 Metalist Kharkiv 6 0