Thun defeat Sparta Prague

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> Selver Hodzic struck late to give Swiss minnow FC Thun a dramatic 1-0 win over Sparta Prague.

Updated: February 25, 2007 10:49 IST
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Selver Hodzic struck late to give Swiss minnow FC Thun a dramatic 1-0 win over Sparta Prague. The Bosnian-born defender fired home a low center from Jose Goncalves in the 89th minute to secure three points for Thun - just when the match seemed to be heading for a scoreless draw. The Sparta defense let the ball cross the six-yard box and Hodzic arrived at the far post to beat goalkeeper Jaromir Blazek's despairing dive, leaving the Prague side to count the cost of two second-half misses from midfielder Tomas Sivok. "We're very, very happy," Thun captain Silvan Aegerter said. "There's no easy matches in the Champions League." Going close Thun, playing in front of more than 30,000 spectators in Bern's Wankdorf stadium, went close twice in the opening stages. In the 10th minute, striker Mauro Lustrinelli beat two Sparta defenders on the edge of the area before shooting straight at Blazek. Two minutes later, a defensive mistake gave Thun's Aegerter a chance for a clear shot on goal but Blazek made a reflex stop with his right boot to divert the ball past the post. Although both sides moved the ball forward well, neither team was able to fashion another clear goal-scoring opportunity. Positive start Sparta started the second period more positively, putting pressure on the Swiss side and almost taking the lead in the 51st minute when Sivok's header from a corner was saved by Thun goalkeeper Eldin Jakupovic. Midfielder Sivok then blazed a shot over the bar in the 64th when it would have been easier to hit the target. His misses proved costly. After that, neither side made much of an impression before Hodzic turned in the dramatic late winner. (AP)

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