Schalke see off Turks
By Mark Buckingham
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Schalke gained a 2-0 win at home over nine-man Fenerbahce in a tetchy game.
Schalke kept their UEFA Champions League dreams alive after a 2-0 win over nine-man Fenerbahce in a tetchy game at Arena AufSchalke.
Kevin Kuranyi headed in the opener on 32 minutes, which was just reward for Schalke's dominance, before Fabio Luciano was sent off before half time for a professional foul.
Marco Aurelio was then dismissed for a second bookable offence early in the second half before Ebbe Sand wrapped up the win in injury time.
Schalke were the dominant force during the first half in Gelsenkirchen and they were aided and abetted by some haphazard goalkeeping from Volkan Demirel.
The Fenerbahce shot-stopper produced a save for the cameras as he caught Lincoln's header on the stretch but he then spilled a shot from the dangerous Levan Kobiashvili.
The jitters were also affecting Schalke keeper Frank Rost as he fumbled a header from Fabio, eventually turning the ball away for a corner when he should have held it cleanly.
That was a rare positive moment for the visitors, with Volkan almost deceived by a Kobiashvili free kick, before Kuranyi, reacting with agility to Christian Poulsen's flick-on, glanced a corner wide of the target.
Fenerbahce ace Tuncay Sanli then appeared to be booked for wearing a necklace before Volkan, characteristically by this point, failed to hold on to another shot from Kobiashvili.
Schalke got the goal their superiority deserved on 32 minutes, when Kuranyi displayed all the hallmarks of a traditional centre forward.
He flicked on a clearance from Rost to Lincoln, surged into the penalty area and produced a spring-heeled leap to powerfully head his team-mate's cross beyond Volkan who, for once, could be absolved of any blame.
Things took a further lurch for the worse for Fenerbahce on 39 minutes when Fabio was dismissed for bringing down Lincoln 25 yards from goal as the playmaker rampaged through a toiling Turkish defence.
The Germans continued to press for a second goal after the interval with Lincoln shooting at Volkan, before he teased in a cross which was taken off the head of Kuranyi by Aurelio.
That was to be the Fenerbahce man's last positive contribution as on 54 minutes he picked up his second yellow card following a rash challenge on Kuranyi.
Reduced to nine men, Fenerbahce sought to take the game to their hosts, with Tuncay ambitiously curling a shot wide from 25 yards.
Schalke were still unable to find the elusive killer goal as Fabian Ernst saw his 25-yard shot trickle wide and Mladen Krstajic wildly slashed his attempt off target after a neat one-two sent him into the box.
After a nervy last 20 minutes, Ralf Rangnick's men finally put the game to bed in injury time as Sand, wearing a protective face mask, headed in at the near post after slack defending by Tuncay.
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|FC Schalke 04||Team Statistics||Fenerbahce|
|1||1st Half Goals||0|
|9||Shots on Target||1|
|8||Shots off Target||2|