Three Romanian football teams this past Thursday have
advanced to the play-off stage as part of the Conference league European
competition. In the third preliminary round, the most spectacular feat was Universitatea
Craiova's 3-nil home win against Ukraine's Zarya Lugansk. Universitatea came
from behind in the wake of a first-leg nil-1 defeat away from home. Scoring for
Universitatea were the Brazilian Raul Silva, in minute 5, Ştefan Baiaram, in
minute 53, and Nicuşor Bancu, in minute 57. It was Universitatea's first
official game with head-coach Mirel radio at the helm. In the play-offs, Universitatea
are pitted against Israeli opponents Hapoel Beer-Sheva.
In Cluj, holders CFR defeated Shakhtar Soligorsk of Belarus,
1-nil. CFR's Spanish footballer Jefte Betancor sealed the fate of the game on 37
minutes. We recall that in the first leg, hosted by a Turkish stadium last
week, CFR were held to a blank draw. In the confrontation for a place in the Conference
League's group stage, CFR will next play Slovenian team NK Maribor.
In Bucharest, FCSB defeated Slovakian opponents Dunajska
Streda, 1-nil, in front of 40,000 fans in the stands, a record high number this
year for a fixture involving a Romanian squad. FCSB's Andrei Cordea scored, in
minute 29. We recall FCSB had for the first leg, away from home, also 1-nil. In
the play-offs, FCSB take on Norway's Viking Stavanger.
Sepsi Sfântu Gheorghe was the only Romanian team that did
not manage to move past the Conference League's third preliminary round, being
eliminated by Djurgaarden of Sweden. The latter team secured a 3-1 win in the
double legged-tie against the Romanians. Djugaarden's Romanian international
footballer, Cosmin Matei, drew first blood on 8 minutes.
counting towards the Romanian football Superleague's fifth round are scheduled
at the weekend. On Friday, FC Argeş face FC U Craiova. On Saturday, Universitatea
Cluj play UTA, Arad, away from home, then in Ploiesti, in the south, Petrolul
go against Rapid Bucharest. On Sunday, Universitatea Craiova are pitted
against CS Mioveni, CFR Cluj face FC Botoşani while FCSB take on Chindia
Târgovişte. Ther fifth round's last two fixtures are scheduled this coming Monday,
when FC Voluntari play Sepsi Sfântu Gheorghe, while Farul Constanţa face FC
Hermannstadt. CFR Cluj and Rapid are at the top of the as-it-stands table, with
9 points each.