Sevilla thrash nine-man Zenit
By Simon Fudge
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Sevilla defeated nine-man Zenit St Petersburg 4-1 in their Uefa Cup quarter final, first leg.
Sevilla look on course for the Uefa Cup semi-finals after a convincing 4-1 first leg win over quarter-final opponents Zenit St Petersburg.
The Russians endured a miserable evening at Estadio Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan after having two men sent off by Luxembourg referee Alain Hamer.
The Spanish Primera Liga club took the lead on the quarter hour mark when on-loan striker Javier Saviola headed home Adriano Correia's cross on the left.
To their credit, Zenit took a 1-1 scoreline into the break in Andalucia after Alexander Kerzhakov headed home Andrei Arshavin's cross from the left.
The second half swung the way of the home side, however, as Zenit had Norwegian defender Erik Hagen sent off after he brought down former West Ham United and Tottenham Hotspur striker Fredi Kanoute in the St Petersburg box for a penalty.
Jose Luis Marti stepped to convert the spot kick for 2-1 on 56 minutes before Saviola extended Sevilla's lead with his second goal of the match ten minutes from the end.
Zenit's misery was compounded when Ashavin was shown a straight red for lashing out at a Sevilla player in injury time.
There was enough time for the Spaniards to cap a fine European win with a fourth goal, as Adriano Correia finished a left-footed effort for 4-1.
The result puts Sevilla within touching distance of a semi-final clash with either Levski Sofia or Schalke, with the second leg taking place in Russia next Thursday.
Click below for a match summary:
Sevilla 4-1 Zenit St Petersburg