Anderlecht hold Mainz 1-1 in UEFA Europa League

BERLIN, Oct. 20 (Xinhua) -- Mainz shared the spoils with Anderlecht as Lukasz Teodorczyk cancelled out Yunus Malli's early opener in the third round of Group C action in the UEFA Europa League on Thursday.

Both teams maintain their unbeaten streak in Group C, as Mainz were unable to protect their lead to the end after Anderlecht's Lukasz Teodorczyk snatched one point on the road in the second half.

The 'Nullfuenfer' grabbed a bright start on home soil as Yunus Malli worked out the first chance with only two minutes played.

The visitors from Belgium were unable to gain a foothold in the opening period, and caused a foul penalty after Olivier Deschacht brought down Pablo De Blasis inside the box. Malli stepped up and lifted the ball into the top right corner to break the deadlock in the 10th minute.

With the early opener Mainz retracted and allowed Anderlecht to work out chances, but Sofiane Hanni was unable to overcome goalkeeper Jonas Loessl following a one-on-one situation in the 14th minute.

Mainz should have doubled their advantage in the 22nd minute, but Karim Onisiwo's effort rattled only the outside of the left post from a promising position. However, the visitors remained dangerous on the fast breaks, but Hanni lacked enough accuracy to overcome custodian Loessl before the break.

After the restart, Mainz tried to control the proceedings on the pitch but it was Anderlecht who restored parity in the 65th minute, as Hanni's cross into the box found Teodorczyk, who nodded home the equalizer.

Both sides tried to grab the winner with long-range efforts, but both goalkeepers were on guard to secure a 1-1 draw.

"I think it is a deserved draw for both teams," Mainz coach Martin Schmidt said. "We played a good first half but Anderlecht turned up at the second half to take a 1-1 draw home."

With the result, all teams remain in their positions in the standings. Anderlecht tops Group C followed by Mainz, who are equal on points. St. Etienne and Gabala bring up the following two positions.

[ Editor: Zhang Zhou ]
 

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