Scott Quigley fires The New Saints into the Champions League Second Qualifying Round

Reporter:

Sports Reporter

THE NEW Saints will take their place in the Champions League Second Qualifying Round against HNK Rijeka after needing extra-time to beat nine-man FC Europa.

Two goals from Scott Quigley, while being given the credit for the opener despite some crediting Wes Fletcher or an own goal were enough to send TNS through.

Europa's hopes were extinguished when two of their stars were dismissed within minutes of each other, leaving them to play for nearly an hour with nine men after Kike and Alex Quillo were sent off. 

The visitors took the lead on 37 minutes when TNS smashed home into the centre of the goal, with the goal eventually given to Quigley. 

Quigley, who scored a wonder goal in the first leg, doubled the Saints lead minutes later and put them ahead in the tie for the first time.

Europa nearly levelled the tie when Gomes's effort hit the post moments before half time, only for the ball to bounce back off Paul Harrison's body.

The home side levelled the tie on aggregate within ten minutes of the second half as Walker slotted home a penalty after TNS were penalised for a handball.

Skipper Harrison was cautioned in the aftermath of the penalty for arguing about the decision.

Saints's efforts were given a boost on 58 minutes when Kike was sent off for appearing to have stamped on Ryan Pryce.

He refused to leave the pitch, but Quillo was also shown a red card for dissent to the referee, leaving Europa with nine men.

Ruscoe made two attacking changes, bringing Adrian Cieslewicz and Greg Draper on to find that winning goal and avoid extra-time.

However, a final 30 minutes was needed and it was business as usual as TNS piled on the pressure, with Europa clearly playing for a penalty shoot-out.

Aeron Edwards and Cieslewicz both came close to putting TNS back ahead.

It was a final throw of the dice from Ruscoe as he put Alex Darlington on for Pryce in extra-time. 

The crucial goal came on the stroke of half-time in extra time when Quigley gathered the ball onto his left foot and fired in a superb effort past Munoz to put TNS 3-1 ahead.

There was still time for referee Lawrence Visser to receive treatment for an injury as the Saints sought to see the game out. 

The final whistle was blown much to the TNS players and fans' delight. 

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