Rijeka too strong for The New Saints

Rhys Llwyd

Rhys Llwyd

Tuesday, 18 Jul 2017, 20:00

It was a night to forget for Scott Ruscoe’s New Saints who lost 1-5 to Rijeka in the second leg of the Champions League 2nd Qualifying Round, falling to their heaviest defeat in Europe for 14 years.

TNS had a mountain to climb after losing 2-0 in the first leg, but they will be disappointed with the 1-5 scoreline which is their heaviest European defeat since losing 0-5 to Manchester City in the UEFA Cup.

The Saints held their ground for 40 minutes of the second leg before Florentin Matei put Rijeka ahead.

Rijeka came out firing in the second half with goals from Mario Gavranovic, Alexander Gorgon and Stefan Ristovski all in a space of 10 minutes.

Adrian Cieslewicz netted a consolation goal for the Saints before Mario Gavranovic grabbed his second of the night to make it 1-5 to the Croatian champions.

The 7-1 aggregate defeat means that The New Saints are knocked out of Europe in the Champions League 2nd Qualifying Round for the sixth consecutive year.