John just the job for Twente
Ola John's goal earned FC Twente a crucial 1-0 away win over Steaua Bucharest in the first leg of their last 32 tie.
Last Updated: 16/02/12 10:48pm
Ola John's goal earned FC Twente a crucial 1-0 away win over Steaua Bucharest in the first leg of their last 32 Europa League tie.
John's wonderful finish, which just crept in at the far post, was by far the highlight of an otherwise poor match that had few clear chances at either end.
But Twente boss Steve McClaren will not mind as his side left the National Arena in control of the tie.
The match started scrappily, with early fouls conceded by both teams to little avail.
It took 13 minutes for the game's first shot on goal, Raul Rusescu's 20-yard effort going wide for the hosts.
They went closer in the 21st minute, Nikolay Mihailov saving well after Leandro Tatu drifted from the left and found space to shoot from inside the area.
The half-hour mark had passed before Twente mustered an attempt of their own and even then Roberto Rosales missed the target.
As half-time got closer the game picked up a little, Eric Bicfalvi and Nacer Chadli both letting fly in quick succession and Stefan Nikolic slotting wide before the interval arrived.
Steaua boss Ilie Stan made one change at the break, Ovidiu Dananae replaced by Novak Martinovic, but it was the Dutch side who upped their game.
John drew a save from Cristian Tatarusanu from the edge of the area after 50 minutes and it was not long before he went one better.
Less than three minutes later he put his side ahead, collecting a loose defensive pass and confidently lobbing the goalkeeper from 12 yards.
John continued to lead the charge for the visitors, crossing dangerously enough for Tatarusanu to come from his line to punch clear.
Steaua's response was disappointing, consisting largely of toothless possession until Tatu shot wide again.
Mihai Costea was equally imprecise with six minutes remaining, while Twente were content to see the game out without further risks.
Rasmus Bengtsson and Glynor Plet were both summoned from the bench in the closing moments as McClaren's side gladly ran down the clock to assure the win.