FK Liepāja

Giorgi Eristavi (33p)
Artūrs Karašausks (90 4)


Dario Tomič in action with Crusaders Michael Carvill (Picture: Stephen Hamilton/


Crusaders suffered a heartbreaking Europa League exit after a late, late goal saw them crashing out of the competition at the hands of Latvian opponents FK Liepāja.

Stephen Baxter's side took a 3-1 lead to the Baltic state but it was that away goal which ultimately gave their hosts the advantage over the two legs.

Liepāja opened the scoring from the spot on 33 minutes after Howard Beverland was adjudged to have upended Arturs Karašausks, with Giorgi Eristavi stepping up to fire past Brian Jensen.

The Crues knew they needed an away goal of their own to strengthen their hand but despite efforts from Paul Heatley, Jordan Owens, Matthew Snoddy and Gavin Whyte they couldn't find a way through.

They were still in the driving seat as normal time ended but, with four minutes of injury time on the clock, Karašausks - who also scored at Seaview a week ago - grabbed Liepāja's second of the night to secure an away goals victory.

FK Liepāja: Raļkevičs, Guèye, Strumia, Hmizs, Lebamba, Kurtišs, Karašausks, Torres, Keita, Eristavi, Tomić subs Sopots (not used), Tomković (not used), Klava (not used), Afanasjevs (replaced Hmizs 61), Grebis (replaced Tomić 71), Ivanovs (not used), Kigurs (replaced Kurtišs 67)

Crusaders: Jensen, Burns, Beverland, Coates, Ward, Carvill, Caddell, Owens, Snoddy, Heatley, Brown subs Dougherty (not used), Cushley (not used), Forsythe (replaced Caddell 59), McClean (not used), Whyte (replaced Carvill 46), Kerr (not used), Suárez (not used)

Referee: Suren Baliyan

Attendance: 2310

Tags:  Crusaders