shakhtar in strong position published: tuesday 31 july 2007, 23.24cet fc pyunik 0-2 fc shakhtar donetsk goals either side of half-time from oleksandr gladkiy and brandão gave shakhtar the first-leg advantage.
by khachik chakhoyan from yerevan
goals either side of half-time from oleksandr gladkiy and brandão enabled fc shakhtar donetsk to take a major step towards the uefa champions league third qualifying round.
solo run a constant thorn in fc pyunik's side, new signing gladkiy was worthy of his opening goal in armenia and could have even broken the deadlock before his 45th-minute strike. the 19-year-old forward eluded his markers by embarking on a mesmerising solo run before racing into the penalty area to force a reaction save out of goalkeeper gevorg kasparov. although the rebound fell kindly for jadson rodriguez, the midfielder was unable to convert the chance.
opening goal pyunik lost the excellent kasparov when he was injured in an aerial challenge with brandão three minutes before half-time and within minutes his replacement ignacio javier bordad lopez was picking the ball out of the net after gladkiy pounced on a defensive error to score from close range. it was to prove a debut to forget for the uruguayan, who was beaten again soon after the interval.
follow-up perhaps sensing the nervousness of the substitute, jadson caught bordad lopez off guard with a powerful shot from long distance which the goalkeeper could only parry into the path of brandão, who made no mistake. shakhtar, bidding to reach the group stage for the second year running and the third time in four years, welcome the armenian champions to ukraine next wednesday.