UEFA Cup First-Leg Results: Bayern a Draw, Leverkusen Crushed | Sports| German football and major international sports news | DW | 04.04.2008
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UEFA Cup First-Leg Results: Bayern a Draw, Leverkusen Crushed

Bayern Munich drew a 1-1 tie in Thursday's first round of the UEFA cup, but the evening proved nearly fatal for Bayer Leverkusen.

Red-jerseyed Leverkusen player challenging white-shirted St Petersburg player for soccer ball.

Leverkusen struggled Thursday to gain advantage over Zenit St Petersburg

Thursday's home game versus Spanish La Liga club Getafe ended with a 1-1 tie for Bayern Munich. The team's singular goal -- headed home by Italian striker Luca Toni -- was held off well into the second half. The tie came when Romanian Cosmin Contra later lobbed the ball in, a sweet score for someone still reeling from comments made earlier by Bayern president Franz Beckenbauer, who said he did not know anything about Getafe.

Older gentleman standing before logo of FC Bayern Munich

Beckenbauer said he knew nothing about Getafe before the match

To which Contra responded, "(M)aybe Beckenbauer will know when we beat Bayern and qualify to the semi-finals."

Though Contra's wish hasn't come true, Bayern coach Ottmar Hitzfield is still lamenting his team's lost chances.

"We should have been up by two goals at half time. Getafe played well and forced the equalizer. It is very difficult for the defense if the forwards fail to score," he said.

St Petersburg runs roughshod over Leverkusen

Meanwhile, Bayer Leverkusen struggled to gain control on their home turf over Russian club Zenit St Petersburg.

Two players challenging for the soccer ball

Leverkusen's game ended with a 1-4 loss

While the Russians dominated much of the first half, with Andrey Arshavin scoring the first goal of the game at 20 minutes, Leverkusen striker Stefan Kiessling tied it up 13 minutes later, scoring the team's sole goal.

The score stayed even at 1-1 into half-time. But during the second half, Zenit ran three goals in 12 minutes. Pavel Pogrebnyak, Aleksandr Anyukov and Igor Denisov all scored, virtually ruling out any hope of a comeback by Leverkusen.

Leverkusen coach Michael Skibbe said he was very disappointed. "All the players did not reach their potential, you can't blame any individual player. It will be very, very difficult to still reach the next round."

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