/ Soccer

Malmo 2-0 Drogheda United (Agg 2-0)

Updated: Thursday, 11 Jul 2013 21:49 | Comments

Emil Forsberg celebrates scoring the opener for Malmo
Emil Forsberg celebrates scoring the opener for Malmo

Goals at the end of both halves were enough to send Malmo through to the next round of the Europa League as they prevailed 2-0 on aggregate against Drogheda United.

Emil Forsberg broke the deadlock just on the stroke of half-time before second-half sub Simon Kroon guaranteed the win in the 92nd minute.

Mick Cooke made only one change to the side which held Malmo to a scoreless draw in Tallaght, Declan O’Brien started in place of Ryan Brennan with David Cassidy switching to the right wing.

For Malmo boss Rikard Norling, it was the pressure to start Simon Thern which forced his hand as he also made the solitary switch from Thursday.

It was Drogheda who started the brighter and on eight minutes David Cassidy made all down the right and whipped in a pass to the back post where Gavin Brennan almost headed home, but the ball was headed behind.

Malmo were forced to play long balls into the Drogheda box as they couldn’t find a way through a solid rearguard, but on 15 minutes one of those balls into the box was missed by Sava and Magnus Eriksson could only deflect the ball goalwards but Prendergast was back to defend.

Declan O’Brien was put through on 23 minutes but despite getting the ball over Malmo keeper Johan Dahlin there wasn’t enough pace to carry it into the goal and Malmo cleared.

Gabriel Sava wasn’t really challenged in the first-half, but he has Prendergast to thank as the defender made a goalsaving tackle on 41 minutes to deny Eriksson again.

But with the half-time whistle looming Forsberg switched wings to give himself space and Tokelo Rantie picked him out with a superb pass and the striker lifted the ball over Sava to give Malmo the lead.

The Swede’s looked more comfortable in the second-half as Drogheda were forced to take a more positive stance and push up the field.

However, despite their pressure it was the hosts who had the better chances as Gavin Brennan collided with Eriksson in the Drogheda box, but the full back had made a great tackle to avert the danger.

Declan O’Brien moved up to a lone striker role and he caused the Malmo defence problems, but he was isolated and struggled to control the ball.

With five minutes of injury time to be played it looked like the Drogs would have a small life-line, but in the 92nd minute Simon Kroon weaved his way through the visitors' defence and powered his shot past Sava.

Malmo will now face Pat Fenlon’s Hibernians as Drogheda United will prepare to bounce back with a league game away to UCD on Sunday. 

Malmo FF: Jiloan Hamad; Magnus Eriksson, Markus Halsti ,Pontus Jansson ,Miiko Albornoz; Ricardinho, Erik Johansson, Simon Thern (Erik Friberg 70mins) Emil Forsberg (Simon Kroon 79),; Johan Dahlin, Tokelo Rantie (Pawel Cibicki 86 mins)

Subs Not Used: Robin Olsen, Benjamin Fadi, Pa Konate, Petar Petrovic

Drogheda United: Gabriel Sava; Gavin Brennan, Derek Prendergast, Alan McNally (Graham Rusk 74 mins), Michael Daly; David Cassidy, Alan Byrne, Paul O’Conor, Declan O’Brien (Philip Hand 86); Peter Hynes, Gary O’Neill

Subs Not Used: Michael Schlingermann, Cathal Brady, Shane Grimes, Brian Gannon, Jason Marks 

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