Champions League qualifying wrap: Sturm, Haifa progress

Austrian side Sturm Graz progressed to the third round of Champions League qualifying despite a 3-2 loss to Videoton.All five goals came in an eventful first half at the Sostoi Stadion in Szekesfehervar, Hungary, but the victory for the hosts was not enough to see them through to the next round following Sturm’s 2-0 first-leg win at home.

The visitors twice came from behind on Wednesday with Akos Elek and Gyorgy Sandor putting Videoton ahead only for Andreas Holzl and Ferdinand Feldhofer to equalise for Sturm.

Zoltan Liptak’s goal in the second minute of first-half injury time restored Videoton’s lead, but Sturm’s advantage from the first leg was enough to ensure they progressed 4-3 on aggregate.

Maccabi Haifa also progressed to the next round despite losing on Wednesday, with FK Borac Banja Luka’s 3-2 victory in Bosnia Herzegovina not enough to overturn the Israeli side’s 5-1 first-leg lead.

Continuing the trend of losing teams progressing, Rosenborg were beaten 2-0 by Icelandic side Breidablik but still moved into the third round 5-2 on aggregate.

The Norwegian side all but sealed their progress into the third qualifying round with a 5-0 home win last week, and goals from Dylan McAllister and Kristinn Steindorsson in the return leg were not enough to turn things around for Breidablik.

Georgian outfit Zestafoni held on for a 3-2 aggregate win over Dacia Chisinau following their 2-0 loss in Moldova.

Zestafoni led 3-0 from last week’s first leg, but went behind early thanks to a Dmitri Popovici strike and were forced to play most of the second half with 10 men after Teimuraz Gongadze received his second yellow card in the 64th minute.

Ghenadie Orbu scored a late spot kick for the hosts to ensure a nervy finish for Zestafoni, but they held on to book their spot in the next round.

Cypriot champions APOEL smashed four goals past Albanian outfit Skenderbeu to secure their progression 6-0 on aggregate.