Football: Arsenal fear trouble in Cyprus

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The Independent Online
ARSENAL encountered a tense atmosphere when they flew into Cyprus yesterday to begin their defence of the Cup-Winners' Cup against Omonia Nicosia.

Cypriot officials have held a crisis meeting to discuss security for tomorrow's match after violent disruption at a league game at Omonia's ground at the weekend, when play had to be stopped as fans spilled on to the pitch.

George Graham, Arsenal's manager, said: 'There is not much we can do, but we won't be intimidated by the possibilities. But in last season's European campaign we had no problems either on the pitch or off it all the way through.'

Motherwell produced a magnificent performance in Germany, losing only 1-0 to Borussia Dortmund in the first leg of their Uefa Cup first- round tie. Andy Moller, the German international, broke their resistance in the 57th minute but the Scots, who had substitute Paul McGrillen sent off in the 87th minute, could have scored themselves. The Republic of Ireland international Tommy Coyne missed their best chance late in the first half.

The Irish league champions Linfield snatched a draw at home against Denmark's Odense when Mark Anderson scored with an angled shot in the 86th minute.

The match of the night came in Germany where Bayer Leverkusen's Ulf Kirsten and PSV Eindhoven's sensational 17-year-old Brazilian, Ronaldo, each scored hat-tricks. Bayer emerged with a 5-4 advantage to take to the Netherlands for the return leg in a fortnight's time.

CSKA Sofia, who once ended Liverpool's defence of the European Cup, put themselves in sight of another upset when a goal from a superb free- kick by Petar Mihtarski eight minutes from time gave them a 3-2 home win over Juventus.

It was not much of a night for Italy, with Parma losing

1-0 to Vitesse Arnhem in the Netherlands. Hans Gillhaus, the former Aberdeen striker, scored the only goal. Parma finished with 10 men after the Portuguese defender, Fernando Couto, was sent off 10 minutes from time for pushing his hand into Philip Cocu's face.

Nor was there cause for joy in northern Spain. The Basque favourites, Athletic Bilbao, lost 2-0 to Anorthosis in Cyprus, and Deportivo La Coruna went down 1-0 to Rosenborg Trondheim in Norway.

Real Madrid did beat Sporting Lisbon, but a one-goal advantage earned for them by Rafael Martin Vasquez, leaves them facing a tense return in the Portuguese capital.