Gzira United suffered a heavy 4-0 defeat to FK Ventspils of Latvia in the first leg of the UEFA Europa League second qualifying round at the Ventspils Olimpiskais Centrs in Ventspils on Thursday.
The Maroons went one goal down late in an otherwise good first half but after the break, they disappointed, suffering a goal which could have easily been avoided after just five minutes and conceding another two goals in the dying minutes. At this point, chances of making a comeback are practically nil.
Tedesco made one change from the team which defeated Hajduk last week as Zach Scerri was preferred to Elvis Sakyi who was included as a substitute late in the game.
Ventspils took the lead on the 41st minute when off a cross from the left by Aiyegun Tosin, Kaspars Svarups flicked the ball home in style as it hit the crossbar before ending at the back of the net.
Five minutes in the second half, the hosts doubled the score when off a freekick from the right by Tosin, the unmarked Helio Batista headed the ball home from close-range.
Four minutes later, a powerful drive by Kazacok hit the upright. Attempts by Nikolai Muscat, Hamed Kone and Jeffersonwere neutralised by Makhnovskyy.
Ventspils made it 3-0 on the 84th thanks to substitute Ingars Stuglis who headed the ball home off a cross by Villela from the left.
Three minutes from time, Serhiichuk received a through pass in a dubious offside position, advanced on the left and served Aiyegun Tosin who made it 4-0.
VENTSPILS Kostyantyn Makhnovskyy, Sony Alcenat, Lucas Villela, Jevgenijs Kazacoks (79’ Ingars Stuglis), Mykhailo Serhiichuk (89’ Bekkhan Aliev), Aiyegun Tosin, Giorgi Mchedlishvili, Kaspars Svarups (73’ Pavel Osipov), Abdoul-Gafar Mamah, Helio Batista, Guga Palavandishvili.
GZIRA Justin Haber, Fernando Barbosa, Gianmarco Conti, Nikolai Muscat, Zack Scerri (80′ Elvis Sakyi), Rodolfo Soares, Andrew Cohen, Juan Carlos Corbalan, Hamed Kone, Arthur Henrique, Jefferson Assis.
Referee: Dimitar Meckarovski (MKD)
Assistant Referees: Dejan Nedelkoski, Goce Petreski (MKD)
Fourth Official: Konstantin Vlaho (MKD)