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Page last updated at 22:22 GMT, Thursday, 5 November 2009

Europa League as it happened



To get involved use 606 or text us your views & comments on 81111. (Not all contributions can be used)

By Jonathan Stevenson

2220: That's that then. Plenty still to play for for Everton and Fulham, but Celtic are really up against it now. Guess I'll see you on Saturday for a Premier League/FA Cup mixer. You wouldn't want to miss that, would you? Night all.

Celtic manager Tony Mowbray: "It's a frustrated dressing-room once again. We had clear-cut chances that didn't go in. We could easily be sitting here saying we won this game 1-0, but we have two games left and must take maximum points."

Everton goalkeeper Tim Howard: The goals were probably coming. The team performance was better tonight, but it's still not where it needs to be. We're in a dogfight here right now and it wasn't good enough, but we're still in with a shout of progressing. Benfica, with respect, are a Champions League team - they've shown what a tough team they are."

2211: Clarity, from Euro Danny: "So here's a bit more context. Shakhtar Donetsk and Werder Bremen have joined Galatasaray in securing qualification for the next stage tonight. Salzburg, with four wins from four, will join them barring a mathematical miracle. Everton remain in control of their Group I destiny, despite tonight's defeat against Benfica - who are hot favourites to top the group now."

Fulham boss Roy Hodgson: "You cannot be happy in the face of injustice, I think the two red cards were very harsh. But what can you do but accept the referee's decision because it doesn't change anything."

2205: Euro Danny: "Terrific late drama as Franz Schiemer scores a last-gasp winner for Salzburg at Levski Sofia. That 1-0 win retains their 100% record and puts them through. And yet more drama - nine-man Cluj-Napoca, who had scored a late leveller against Sparta Prague, have lost after the remarkably-named Bony Wilfred scored a winner for the visitors in the sixth minute of injury time. Heavens."

From acmilandrew on Twitter: "Creatively, Everton have struggled badly. The news that Arteta won't be back soon is really a big blow to their chances."

2159: Some of the other games are still going on, but Euro Danny will be wrapping things up shortly.

Full time
2157: Full-time Everton 0-2 Benfica
You might want to try, but you can't really argue with that - the better team won on the day. David Moyes must pick his team up again. No wonder Eusebio loves Goodison Park.

2156: The second set of games have got super lively. Here's more Euro Danny: "Blimey. Cluj-Napoca have responded to being reduced to a Fulham-esque nine men by notching a 90th-minute equaliser at home against Sparta Prague. Take a bow Sebastian Dubarbier."

2155: Benfica are picking Everton off a little here, Ruben Amorim turning and firing over from the edge of the penalty area. At the other end, Diniyar Bilyaletdinov hammers wide from 25 yards. Only just wide, mind.

2153: Here's Euro Danny, using my brilliantly constructed gag: "Well, it looks like Steve McClaren's FC Twente side are out of jail against FC Sheriff. Miroslav Stoch's 89th-minute goal puts them 2-1 up. A potentially vital Group H win, that."

2152: We've just entered four added minutes at Goodison Park.

From Liam, Bradford, sober, via text on 81111: "(See 2136) Actually, Balazs Dzsudzsak is exactly the sort of thing you'd expect a drunk man to type. Usually as a result of their head hitting the keyboard as they pass out."

2150: He's more prolific in Europe than Raul. It's Euro Danny: "Two late goals for Werder Bremen have put them 2-0 up against Austria Vienna and the German side seem set fair to qualify from Group L. Elsewhere in that group Athletic Bilbao seem set to thwart winless Nacional, as Joseba Etxeberria's late penalty makes it 1-1."

2148: What a chance for Everton. A corner is half-cleared to the edge of the Benfica box and Leighton Baines' shot falls at the feet of Sylvain Distin six yards out. He's not offside, but has a quick look before shooting towards the top corner, Julio Cesar making a fine save. From the corner, Marouane Fellaini heads off target.

2146: Euro Danny's not done. Oh God no: "Busy night at Villarreal where Lazio are surely beaten. A third penalty of the night - and second for the home team - is netted by Giuseppe Rossi and it's 4-1. It's also action o'clock at Partizan Belgrade, who trail Club Brugge 4-2 and have just had Mladen Krstajic sent off."

From ElSquirrel on 606: "Stick a fork in Everton, they're done."

2143: Young Kieran Agard comes on for Yakubu for Everton. Just under nine minutes plus stoppages left at Goodison Park.

2142: Euro Danny: "Not been a great night for Everton, but in the other match in their group it's AEK Athens 2-2 BATE. That's a result that suits the Toffees - although BATE's Igor Shitov has just been sent off. Thirteen minutes to go there."

2139: Everton need a goal quickly if they are to get back into this, but a deep free-kick is punched clear by Julio Cesar.

Benfica goal: It's unfortunate, because the scorer looks offside, but the flag stays down. Javier Saviola plays a one-two with Pablo Aimar and gets into some space down the right, and the ball falls for Ruben Amorim to fire in a shot from the edge of the box. It takes a heavy deflection and falls to Oscar Cardozo, who magnificently adjusts his body and slams a left-foot volley into the corner past Tim Howard.

2137: GOAL Everton 0-2 Benfica

2136: Euro Danny's got an answer for everything: "(See 2132) No I've not been drinking. If I had, would I be able type out the name of Balazs Dzsudzsak - the man who has levelled for PSV in Copenhagen? No, I would not. That game is 1-1 and PSV are looking favourites to finish top as it stands. Meanwhile Lazio have pulled one back but they still trail Villarreal 3-1."

2134: Everton are probing, but they aren't creating chances of any sort. Benfica, meanwhile, look unbelievably dangerous on the break and David Luiz curls wide from outside the box.

2132: More Euro Danny chat. I promise, he's not been drinking: "Fans of clubs getting their maiden Europa League group stage victory at the fourth time of asking would do well to look to Portugal, where Nacional have gone 1-0 up against Athletic Bilbao thanks to a penalty from Da Silva Edgar. A win there would make that group very open. Meanwhile, look away now, Steve McClaren. It's FC Twente 1-1 FC Sheriff, Cheik Tiote's own goal levelling up for the visitors."

2130: Everton bring on Brazilian striker Jo for Dan Gosling.

2129: We have 23 minutes left plus injury time for Everton to conjure a leveller at Goodison Park.

From Elliot in Northampton, via text on 81111: "In three years time I reckon Di Maria and Rodwell will both be on the same team. The new Giggs and Scholes, anyone?"

Benfica goal: The Portuguese giants break with pace, and there looks trouble right away. Angel di Maria plays a lovely one-two with Javier Saviola and then feeds the Argentine on the edge of the Everton box. He gets a bit lucky as the ball runs away from him but bounces neatly back into his path off Di Maria, and Saviola whacks it into the bottom left-hand corner of Tim Howard's net.

2124: GOAL Everton 0-1 Benfica

2123: Brasseye, below - fill your boots, son. The once-great Pablo Aimar comes on for Benfica, replacing Fabio Coentrao. Moments earlier, Angel di Maria had forced Tim Howard to tip over with a left-foot rocket shot from outside the box.

From brasseye on Twitter: "Was going to watch the second half, but unless my favourite player of all time Pablo Aimar comes on, it sounds far too dull."

2119: Is Euro Danny having a Turkish? "Big news for Fenerbahce. Fabio Da Silva Bilica has put them 2-1 up at home against Steaua Bucuresti. A win there won't put the Turkish side through, but they'll be hot favourites for top spot in Group H. Meanwhile, Group J hot-shots Shakhtar Donetsk have gone 1-0 up at Toulouse. Shakhtar and Salzburg (who are currently drawing) have the only 100% records left in the Europa League."

2118: Maybe Angel di Maria should come to England - the jeering really takes you back. Oscar Cardozo plays a sumptuous outside-of-the-left-foot pass through to the young winger and he races forward, lashing a couple of yards over from the edge of the box.

2117: I implore you, keep getting in touch, I need you: Twitter me, get the texts in to 81111, and join in with the 606 crew. Please.

2114: If Angel di Maria is going to come to the Premier League, he might have to tone down the theatrics. He is fouled by Marouane Fellaini, but his reaction is ridiculous as he goes down clutching his leg like he's been shot. Can't remember when the last time a hair-gelled, strutting, cocky young winger left Portugal for Manchester...

Yellow card
2112: Everton give the ball away in midfield and Fabio Coentrao tries to break free, but Jack Rodwell tugs him back and picks up a booking from referee Said Ennjimi.

2110: Javier Saviola collects the ball inside the Everton box and twice quickly shifts it to try and create a yard to shoot, the second time slicing horribly wide from 10 yards.

2108: I think Euro Danny's lost it: "Numbers fans will be ever so slightly disappointed at the news that the attendance at FC Twente tonight is 20,200. So close, so close."

2107: Back under way at Goodison Park.

Everton's injured captain Phil Neville: "I think we've done OK so far, but let's be a little bit cautious because of what happened in the first game. We need to keep concentrating. I saw a specialist yesterday and he's happy with the knee, so hopefully I'll be back training in two or three weeks."

From Neil, Liverpool fan, via text on 81111: "As a Liverpool fan (yep, some of us are still active) I don't say this often, but come on Everton! How brilliant would the prospect of a Europa League derby be? OK the football wouldn't be great, but the drama unmatchable."

From Mondraker275 on 606: "I'm surprised Danny remembers what group anyone is in. There is a group K? There is probably a group no-one has mentioned since the start of the season, poor group."

From AngryRichy on Twitter: "Yawn. I wish there was a dodgy ref in this match - might make it a bit more interesting. C'mon Everton!"

Half time
2052: Half-time Everton 0-0 Benfica
Looks like I've cursed this one too, then (1750). Plenty of life left yet, though, here's hoping for a much-improved second half.

2051: Uruguayan international Maxi Pereira comes on for the Portuguese giants in first-half stoppage time.

2049: Benfica's Brazilian forward Ramires has done a groin and he limps off.

2047: Euro Danny: "Fancy a Danish? FC Copenhagen are 1-0 up against PSV thanks to Jesper Gronkjaer's penalty. Bit of a Group K upset on the cards there, PSV were storming it. If Copenhagen win, there's potential for a bit of Group of Death action there."

2045: Top drawer action. Fabio Coentrao sends over a stunning cross from the right that Oscar Cardozo heads against a post and from the rebound Javier Saviola's thumping volley is parried away by Tim Howard.

2044: Oh, hello, deadline day text. How we miss you...

From anon, via text on 81111: "My mate knows David Moyes and he said that Moyes is set to buy Daniel Carvalho in January."

2041: I think Euro Danny wishes he was at El Madrigal tonight. Don't we all? "Er, you know that crazy awful start by Lazio at Villarreal? Well, things might just be getting a touch better. Villarreal's Gonzalo has just been sent off for a professional foul - but, oh dear, Pasquale Foggia's smashed the ball against the bar. Still 3-0 to Villarreal, but it's 10 v 10 now."

2039: Value down to £10m as Angel di Maria miscontrols a ball out on the left and it runs away from him and out of play.

2038: Tim Cahill heads Diniyar Bilyaletdinov's cross into the arms of Julio Cesar from eight yards.

2037: Goals in short supply, aren't they Euro Danny? "Everton's group is looking like being a tight one, and in the other match, it's AEK Athens 1-2 BATE. If Everton and Benfica draw tonight, it looks like Group I could go right to the wire."

2036: Just over half an hour gone at Everton and it's still 0-0. Benfica have Pablo Aimar and Nuno Gomes on the bench. Brilliant.

2034: That could have been a disaster for Everton. A cross from the Benfica left causes panic and a lack of communication between Tim Howard and Leighton Baines and eventually the American recovers to gather at the second attempt.

From M.I.T on 606: "Clearly we've got a decent referee at Goodison". My goodness I fear those words will be back to haunt you, Mr Stevenson."

2030: Still waiting for it to catch fire. Not seen anything from the Benfica players who caused so much damage two weeks ago, with only Javier Saviola at the races so far. Ramires is a funny one - he seems to be very highly rated, but during the Confederations Cup he looked useless to me. Shows what I know about football.

2028: Diniyar Bilyaletdinov crosses from the left and it falls to Leighton Baines, who sees a right-foot snap-shot blocked, before Jack Rodwell pings one just high and wide from 30 yards.

From hopeful Blue, via text on 81111: "Eusebio - legend, if Benfica don't need him he could always turn out for the Blues as he loves the place so much. Probably got more energy than The Yak..."

Yellow card
2024: Yakubu catches Ramires just above the ankle, that's a poor challenge from the striker and he's booked for his efforts. No worse, no better than the Fulham ones, but clearly we've got a decent referee at Goodison.

2021: Goodness gracious me. Euro Danny: "Er, you know that bad start by Lazio? Well, Ruben Cani scores a beauty to make it 2-0, then Robert Pires with a penalty - his second - makes it 3-0. Just 15 Europa League minutes gone there."

2020: Better from Everton as Leighton Baines feeds Yakubu and he turns quickly and impressively, only to slice his left-foot shot off target.

2018: Bit scrappy on Merseyside, neither side has got into their stride as of yet. For those of you confused by the Eusebio chat, in the 1966 World Cup quarter-final at Goodison, North Korea went 3-0 up against Portugal. But Eusebio scored four times as the Portuguese won a classic 5-3.

2016: Euro Danny: "Steve McClaren's fighting the law tonight - will the law win? Maybe not - it's FC Twente 1-0 FC Sheriff, thanks to Miroslav Stoch's eighth-minute goal. Vital match in Group H, that."

From KingSi on Twitter: "See 2005 - Are you sure Eusebio didn't call it the Park stadium?"
It could have been anything, but my Portuguese is worse in fairness

2012: Euro Danny is absolutely fuming. So am I. In fact, we all are - and you should be too: "Crikey. Could Lazio have begun any more poorly? They're 1-0 down at Villarreal (Robert Pires) and down to 10 men. Mind you, the sending off is a farce. I don't want to get all angry like Stevo, but, I mean, really. Roberto Boronio is sent off by referee Knut Kircher after doing little more than waving his hand somewhere in the direction of Joseba Llorente. Utterly unfathomable decision."

2010: Trading chances as Goodison as Marouane Fellaini's shot is straight at Julio Cesar, while at the other end the lively Javier Saviola's shot is saved by Tim Howard.

2009: Looking forward to seeing Angel di Maria tonight - a damn sight more than Everton fans, I'll bet. The Argentine wing wizard was linked with a £12m move to Manchester United in this morning's newspapers - another top-class display and that'll be £15m at least.

2007: Revenge is on the menu for David Moyes' men tonight, after Everton were mauled 5-0 at Benfica two weeks ago. TYhe Toffees remain in a good position in Group I, though, and victory tonight could put them on the brink of qualifying for the last 32.

2005: We're under way at Goodison Park - or Goodness Park, as the great Eusebio called it moments ago.

2002: Euro Danny: "So, halfway through the night's action - here's a little bit of context for you. The only team to qualify tonight are Galalatasary in Group F - although Panathinaikos seem almost certain to join them. In Group A, Ajax and Anderlecht are all-but through. Group B is up for grabs, it looks like two from Lille, Genoa and Valencia. And in Group D Sporting need just one point to go through."

From Dom, via text on 81111: "Careful Stevo, Keith Hackett reads the live text."
Uh-oh. Er, hi Keith! Keep up the good work.

1959: Don't forget how to get in touch: Twitter me, get the texts in to 81111, and join in with the 606 crew. Do it.

1956: Holy... Euro Danny: "Drama fans will be loving the scenes in Heerenveen, where Hertha Berlin won 3-2 thanks to Artur Wichniarek's last-gasp goal. And what's this? Genoa what - it's more drama! Giuseppe Sculli's only scored in injury-time to make it Genoa 3-2 Lille. Crumpets."

From indecident on 606: "No exaggeration - the worst refereeing performance I have ever seen. Fulham have been robbed, simple."

1954: Legend alert: Benfica great Eusebio: "Sorry, I don't speak good English. But today for me, for my family, it's a good day, for Benfica to play here. This stadium for me is the best stadium in my playing life."

1952: I don't think I've ever said this on the live text before, but Fulham lost that match because of the referee. A truly appalling display of officialdom - that Dutchman should hang his head in shame.

1950: Full-time Roma 2-1 Fulham

1950: Full-time Hamburg 0-0 Celtic

1948: SENDING OFF (Paul Konchesky, Fulham)
Oh for God's sake, where do they get these referees from? The left-back brings down Rodrigo Taddei - it's a poor tackle, yeah, but Fulham are frustrated and you can understand why - and Kevin Blom goes and shows him a straight red. Just ridiculous.

1948: Into injury time. Celtic's draw would mean they have to win their last two games and hope results go for them. Bhoy could they do with a goal here.

1946: Euro Danny (a fan of Groundhog Day, obviously): "Genoa what? Lille are only putting together a claim for comeback of the night. Trailing 2-0, the French side are now 2-2 in Italy and putting their Group B qualifying campaign firmly back on track. As I type, though, Group B rivals Slavia Prague have matched them and are now 2-2 with Valencia. Tense times."

1944: Stefano Okaka Chuka tries to wrap it up in Rome, but Mark Schwarzer is equal to his effort.

1942: Five minutes left plus stoppages. Any wannabe heroes need to put their hand up: Hamburg 0-0 Celtic, Roma 2-1 Fulham.

From foreverton on 606: "Pretty nervous feel around Goodison Park tonight. I'm praying we can put in a good display. Another depleted squad against an excellent Benfica team is worrying. I have faith though - 1-0 with Yakubu scoring a screamer."

1937: Celtic have once again come into the game more as the second half has worn on in Hamburg, but they really need a goal otherwise they are all-but out. In Rome, the previously sleepy crowd have suddenly woken up.

1936: Dan Gosling and Tony Hibbert come into the Everton side with Lucas Neill and John Heitinga ineligible as David Moyes' side looks to respond from their 5-0 defeat in Lisbon. Benfica, who are level on points with Everton at the top of their group, have Argentine Javier Saviola - who scored twice in the first game - leading the line.

1935: I might need to put Euro Danny out at the end of the night: "Tel-Aviv have pretty much wrapped up victory in Austria as they now lead a 3-0 against Rapid Vienna, Bebars Natcho notching. Speaking of Austria, Panathinaikos lead 1-0 at Sturm Graz. A win there would - as well as boosting their own hopes - have the interesting side-effect of potentially securing rivals Galatasaray's progress."

Roma goal: It had been coming. The move starts with John Arne Riise's pass and ends with Stefano Okaka Chuka heading home Rodrigo Taddei's cross from the Roma right.

1933: GOAL Roma 2-1 Fulham

From anon, via text on 81111: "Stevo, my brother got arrested this time last year for nicking fireworks, it's OK though, they let him off!"

1930: Hell of a save from Lukasz Zaluska to keep Celtic on level terms, arching his back to tip over David Rozehnal's bullet header for Hamburg. Roughly 17 minutes left in both games.

1929: Euro Danny: "It's now Rapid Vienna 0-2 Hapoel Tel-Aviv, with Gil Vermouth netting the goal which might leave Celtic feeling a bit shaken, if not stirred. The Bhoys are in trouble in Group C, and if the Israelis win, a Hamburg win puts Celtic out. Meanwhile, Basle seemed to have snuffed out CSKA Sofia's brief fightback, with Alex Frei's second making it 3-1 to the Swiss."

1928: Fulham take Bjorn Helge Riise off and send on Bobby Zamora.

Roma goal: You couldn't make it up, this game of ours. Roma play a corner to the edge of the box, where John Arne Riise sends in one of his left-foot piledrivers. It deflects first off Zoltan Gera and then off his brother Bjorn Helge to wrongfoot Mark Schwarzer and fly in. Heartbreaker.

1926: GOAL Roma 1-1 Fulham

1924: Euro Danny: "Genoa what? Hernan Crespo has only gone and scored to make it Genoa 2-0 Lille. A potentially great night for the Italians, who would put themselves right back in the Group B mixer with a win. Elsewhere, in Fulham's group, it's now Basle 2-1 CSKA Sofia, with Todor Yanchev pulling a goal back. Still up for grabs there."

1923: Everton v Benfica line-ups:
Howard, Hibbert, Yobo, Distin, Baines, Gosling, Fellaini, Rodwell, Bilyaletdinov, Cahill, Yakubu.
Subs: Nash, Jo, Coleman, Duffy, Agard, Baxter, Wallace.
Benfica: Julio Cesar, Ruben Amorim, Sidnei, Luisao, David Luiz, Di Maria, Ramires, Javi Garcia, Fabio Coentrao, Cardozo, Saviola.
Subs: Quim, Shaffer, Aimar, Maxi Pereira, Weldon, Nuno Gomes, Felipe Menezes.
Referee: Said Ennjimi (France)

1921: Giorgios Samaras beautifully controls a long pass and it looks like he's through on the Hamburg goal, but he shoots early, tamely, and straight at Frank Rost. No confidence at all.

1919: He's our Rocket Man. Here's more Euro Danny: "Potential biggest winners of the night are Galatasaray, who are now 3-0 up in Bucharest against Dinamo. As it stands, the Turks would qualify from Group F."

1916: Double change for Celtic: Marc-Antoine Fortune and Lee Naylor are on for Scott McDonald and Aiden McGeady.

1914: Hamburg have started this half strongly, too - especially Eljero Elia, who twists and turns on the right before drilling a low shot wide of the far post.

1913: Maybe Euro Danny and Group D should get a room..? "Still a goal-fest over in Group D. It's now Heerenveen 2-2 Hertha Berlin. Elsewhere, it's Anderlecht 1-1 FC Timisoara, Winston Parks with the equaliser for the visitors. Who says Parks' football is rubbish?"

1911: If Fulham beat Roma tonight, it will be one of the greatest results in their history. As I type those words, Marco Cassetti heads into the side-netting at the far post.

1909: Celtic give the ball away and Eljero Elia breaks at pace, sending in a low shot that Lukasz Zaluska parries away from his bottom right-hand corner.

Red card
1907: SENDING OFF (Erik Nevland, Fulham)
He's only been on the pitch for four minutes - problems now for the Cottagers. Daniel de Rossi gets away from the Norwegian and he brings him down from behind, about 20 yards outside the Fulham box. It's a stupid, needless tackle, but not sure it was quite deserving of a red. Been here before.

Someone has struck the woodwork
1905: Very, very close for Hamburg as a free-kick is swung over from the right and Dutch defender Joris Mathijsen rises high to head against the Celtic crossbar.

1903: Fulham have taken Diomansy Kamara off and sent on Erik Nevland, that's an enforced change. Roma are forced into one as keeper Doni makes way for Julio Sergio, while Rodrigo Taddei has come on for Cicinho.

1902: Back under way in Germany and in Italy. Team news on the way for Everton v Benfica, which starts at 8.05 local time. Also worth noting that Ryan in Chester (see 1824) is getting an absolute pasting on the comments - feel like I've stitched you up a bit there, son.

From James_87 on 606: "I love Fulham - more than humans AND alcohol. Please hold on, I wish I was there. Very proud."

From CricHeather on Twitter: "I'm thinking that Liverpool might have problems in the Uefa Cup, although I might be slightly biased being a Man United Woman..."
Also, sorry love, but it is the Europa League now.

From Harry S, via text on 81111: "Evening. At Stadio Olympico for my 21st, can't even hear the Roma fans. The ref is having a shocker, apparently a foul and a tackle are the same thing in Italy."

1847: It's half-time in Hamburg and it's half-time in Rome. Hamburg 0-0 Celtic and Roma 0-1 Fulham. You can't argue with that.

1844: It's gone a little bit scrappy in Germany - disappointing after a decent start to the game. On the brink of half-time now.

1843: Good grief, yet more Euro Danny: "Quick Danny update (see 1841) - Alex Frei has made it Basle 2-0 CSKA Sofia with a penalty. Looking mighty good for the Swiss." Well, I guess someone was always going to Frei tonight...

1842: The Romans are furious, they want a penalty. Roma play a cute corner routine short to Philipp Mexes who lashes it in and it appears to hit John Pantsil on his left arm. Not sure he could have got out of the way, though.

1841: Euro Danny is on fire: "Marcos Gelabert has put Basle 1-0 up against CSKA Sofia in the other match in Fulham's group. No-one can qualify from Group E tonight, but if scores stay the same, Fulham and Basle are going to be hot favourites to go through."

From Ozyakup, Botelho, Freeman, Nordtveit -The Future Is Arsenal on 606: "Clint Dempsey has to be one of the biggest bargains ever pulled off in the Premier League. A poor man's Ronaldo, really."

1838: Fulham are alive. They open up some space for Paul Konchesky down the left and he swings over a cross to the back stick that Diomansy Kamara heads wide. Roy Hodgson must be purring.

1835: Scott McDonald is played in down the inside left channel in Hamburg, but his goalbound shot from an angle is blocked by the legs of Frank Rost. Meanwhile in Rome, Jonathan Greening is booked, meaning he'll miss their next game.

1834: More Euro Danny: "Over in Group A, Anderlecht and Ajax (appropriately enough) are both 1-0 up - against FC Timisoara and Dinamo Zagreb respectively. Should they both win, they'll both be right on the brink of qualifying for the last 32."

1832: Fulham are carving Roma open all too easily and again the Italian team's defence is left open for Clint Dempsey to have a pop - but the American wants too many touches and eventually they deny him the opportunity.

1831: About half an hour gone in our two early kick-offs tonight and so far so good, with Fulham leading 1-0 at Roma and Celtic and Hamburg scoreless.

From Dicky_Boy on Twitter: "Remember, remember the fifth of November. The day that Fulham emerged as a contender!"

1827: Euro Danny's in the goals again: "Goal fans might want to have a gander at Group D, where there have been four strikes already. Sporting have scored one, as have FK Ventspils. Heerenveen have notched, likewise Hertha Berlin. Both matches are 1-1, naturally. Elsewhere, Galatasaray's former Premier League goalscoring machine Harry Kewell has put them 1-0 ahead against Dinamo Bucuresti."

1824: What a chance for Roma. Cicinho sends over a sublime cross from the right and they are queuing up in the middle, Philippe Mexes eventually heading wide from five yards. Got to score.

From Ryan in Chester, via text on 81111: "Am I the only one, having seen the name of Celtic's 'keeper, sat wondering if any other players have a forename/surname anagram thang going on?"

1821: Hamburg hit back and Marcell Jansen's left-foot effort is pushed away by Lukasz Zaluska in the Celtic goal.

1820: Celtic so close to taking the lead. Scott McDonald is played in by Georgios Samaras and his side-footed finish is brilliantly saved by Frank Rost in the Hamburg goal.

Fulham goal: Have some of that, Europe's big guns. Clint Dempsey broaches the offside trap and squares for Diomansy Kamara and he is upended by a sliding Marco Andreolli - remember him? The defender is booked and Kamara dusts himself down to roll in the penalty.

1819: GOAL Roma 0-1 Fulham


1817: Get in, get in - Euro Danny's in the house: "Bad news for Celtic coming in from Austria. Hapeol Tel-Aviv are 1-0 up against Rapid Vienna thanks to Avichai Yadin's goal. If the Israeli side win that one, Celtic will exit the competition with defeat in Germany. Tense times."

From Sinspaw on 606: "See 1808 - Stevo, did you know a few years back some Lazio fans actually brought a motorcycle to the stadium hours before a game - only to throw it down from the upper floors in the middle of the match?"

1812: OK, fine, have it your way: the very best bonfire night gags will have a good chance of getting on this page tonight. I tried, I really did. See 1735 for how to get involved.

1810: Celtic are getting a foothold on the game in Hamburg, knocking it around quite nicely. Their number of fans in the Nordbank Arena tonight is boosted by 1,000 St Pauli fans - Hamburg's city rivals are supporting the Scots. I went to a St Pauli game once - nutbag. God, it's all about me tonight, isn't it?

1808: Quiet start in Rome, no fireworks yet - though there was a pretty big bang in the stadium a moment ago, God knows what that was. At the Milan derby in February I heard the loudest noise of all time and was probably the only person there who batted an eyelid. Italians, eh?

1805: Chance for Celtic. Giorgios Samaras goes down in the box and it falls for Barry Robson on the edge of the box, but the midfielder's shot is deflected over.

1804: Hamburg's Marcus Berg must be invisible - he's allowed the room of the Celtic box to pick his spot from 10 yards, but luckily for the Bhoys Lukasz Zaluska makes the save with his feet. Intense early Hamburg pressure.

From James, in Bath, via text on 81111: "Excuse me. Fulham have won the Uefa Intertoto Cup. That must get a mention."

1801: They get under way in Rome bang on time, and shortly after, we're up and running in Hamburg too.

From ChrisSmack on Twitter: "See 1753 - surely the fact that the third-placed teams, regardless of quality, join the Europa Cup at all devalues it completely?"

1756: The six teams we'll be keeping an eye on tonight have won the following European trophies between them (with the Uefa Cup noticeably absent from the list):
European Cup x4
European Cup Winners' Cup x2
Inter-Cities Fairs Cup x1
Anglo-Italian Cup x1
Great pedigrees and - fingers crossed - it should be a great evening.

1753: Gather round, readers. Take a cheeky little look at the Champions League tables, if you're able to. In full, those teams in third who could find themselves in the Uefa Europa League: Bayern Munich, CSKA Moscow, Marseille, Atletico Madrid, Liverpool, Barcelona, VfB Stuttgart and Standard Liege. Suddenly, this doesn't feel like such an inferior competition, does it?

1750: Stevo's Predos:
Hamburg 2-1 Celtic
Roma 2-2 Fulham
Everton 3-2 Benfica

From yorker_129-7 on 606: "So... can we expect some fireworks tonight? Sorry, sorry, I promise I won't do it again."

Fulham manager Roy Hodgson: "This is an important game. We were extremely unlucky in the first one but we know this will be tough because Roma have got their backs against the wall at the moment and they will come out fighting."

1742: Celtic make one change for the vital Europa League clash in Hamburg, with Barry Robson the only alteration to the team which beat Kilmarnock 3-0 in the SPL on Saturday - he replaces Paddy McCourt in midfield. Sweden international Marcus Berg, who scored in Hamburg's 1-0 win at Celtic Park last month, partners Jonathan Pitroipa again in attack for the Germans.

1741: Fulham boss Roy Hodgson makes three changes from the side which beat Liverpool last Saturday. Midfield trio Zoltan Gera, Bjorn Helge Riise and Dickson Etuhu come in for Damien Duff, Chris Baird and Bobby Zamora. Roma start with former Arsenal forward Julio Baptista and ex-Liverpool left-back John Arne Riise, who will be up against his brother.

1738: Hamburg v Celtic line-ups:
Rost, Rincon, Rozehnal, Mathijsen, Aogo, Elia, Jarolim, Ze Roberto, Jansen, Pitroipa, Berg.
Subs: Hesl, Tesche, Trochowski, Tavares, Schulz, Torun.
Celtic: Zaluska, Hinkel, Caldwell, Loovens, Daniel Fox, Robson, Crosas, N'Guemo, McGeady, Samaras, McDonald.
Subs: Cervi, Naylor, McManus, Fortune, Wilson, McGinn, McCourt.
Referee: Carlos Velasco Carballo (Spain)

1736: Roma v Fulham line-ups:
Doni, Cassetti, Mexes, Andreolli, Riise, Cicinho, Pizarro, De Rossi, Guberti, Okaka Chuka, Julio Baptista.
Subs: Bertagnoli, Taddei, Motta, Perrotta, Cerci, Brighi, Menez.
Fulham: Schwarzer, Pantsil, Hughes, Hangeland, Konchesky, Riise, Etuhu, Greening, Gera, Kamara, Dempsey.
Subs: Stockdale, Baird, Nevland, Zamora, Smalling, Davies, Anderson.
Referee: Kevin Blom (Holland)

1735: Team news from the two early games on the way in literally seconds, but here's how to get stuck in: Twitter me to kingdom come, get the amusing texts in to 81111, and join up and join in with the 606 crew. Three ways to have your say - pick your weapon of choice and do it.

1732: Now I've upset half of Merseyside (again), here's a quick rundown of this evening's events:
Hamburg v Celtic (1800 GMT)
Roma v Fulham (1800 GMT)
Everton v Benfica (2005 GMT)

1730: Hey Evertonians - fancy a Uefa Europa League final against arch-rivals Liverpool on 12 May at the HSH Nordbank Arena in Hamburg? Yeah, I bet you do.

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Europa League results

5 Nov 2009 23:59 UK

Home Team Score Away Team Time
AEK Athens 2-2 BATE R
Anderlecht 3-1 Timisoara R
Basle 3-1 CSKA Sofia R
CFR Cluj-Napoca 2-3 Sparta Prague R
Dinamo Bucharest 0-3 Galatasaray R
Dinamo Zagreb 0-2 Ajax R
Everton 0-2 Benfica R
FC Copenhagen 1-1 PSV R
FC Twente 2-1 Tiraspol R
Fenerbahce 3-1 S. Bucharest R
Genoa 3-2 Lille R
Hamburg 0-0 Celtic R
Heerenveen 2-3 Hertha Berlin R
Levski Sofia 0-1 SV Salzburg R
Nacional 1-1 Athletic Bilbao R
P. Belgrade 2-4 Club Brugge R
Rapid Vienna 0-3 Hapoel Tel-Aviv R
Roma 2-1 Fulham R
SK Sturm Graz 0-1 Panathinaikos R
Slavia Prague 2-2 Valencia R
Sporting 1-1 FK Ventspils R
Toulouse 0-2 S. Donetsk R
Villarreal 4-1 Lazio R
Werder Bremen 2-0 FK Aust. Vienna R

see also
Roma 2-1 Fulham
05 Nov 09 |  Europe
Everton 0-2 Benfica
05 Nov 09 |  Europe
Hamburg 0-0 Celtic
05 Nov 09 |  Europe
Football on the BBC
11 Aug 10 |  Football

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