32 Thursday, 17 September 2009 London Lite LITESPORT TONIGHTSFIXTURES(7.45pmKOunlessstated) UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE PLAY-OFF FIRST LEG Group A Ajax v FC Timisoara (6.00) Dinamo Zagreb v Anderlecht (6.00) Group B Genoa v Slavia Prague (6.00) Lille v Valencia (6.00) Group C Hapoel Tel-Aviv v Celtic (6.00, ESPN) Rapid Vienna v Hamburg (6.00) Group D Heerenveen v Sporting (6.00) Hertha Berlin v FK Ventspils (6.00) Group E Basle v Roma (6.00) CSKA Sofia v FULHAM (6.00, ITV4) Group F Panathinaikos v Galatasaray (6.00) SK Sturm Graz v Dinamo Bucuresti (6.00) Group G Lazio v SV Red Bull Salzburg (8.05) Villarreal v Levski Sofia (8.05) Group H Fenerbahce v FC Twente (8.05, ESPN) Steaua Bucuresti v FC Sheriff (8.05) Group I Benfica v BATE (8.05) Everton v AEK Athens (8.05, Five) Group J Club Brugge v Shakhtar Donetsk (8.05) Partizan Belgrade v Toulouse (8.05) Group K CFR Cluj-Napoca v FC Copenhagen (8.05) Sparta Prague v PSV (8.05) Group L Athletic Bilbao v FK Austria Vienna (8.05) Nacional v Werder Bremen (8.05) Changing of the guard against the Army Men CSKA SOFIA v FULHAM EUROPA LEAGUE GROUP E, LIVE ON ITV4 FROM 5.30PM (KICK-OFF: 6PM) MATCH FACTS Roy Hodgson came up against CSKA during his time as coach of Norwegian side Viking FK, with the Bulgarian outfit prevailing 2-0 at home in the 2005/06 UEFA Cup group stage . Damien Duff also visited CSKA with a previous club, scoring his sides third as Blackburn Rovers FC drew 3-3 in Sofia to come through a 2002/03 UEFA Cup first-round tie on away goals. REFEREE DARKO CEFERIN (SLO) KEY MEN VLADIMIR MANCHEV CSKA THE 31-year-old Bulgaria international is one of the few CSKA players with a decent amount of European experience having trawled the lower reaches of La Liga in Spain with the likes of Levante and Celta Vigo. He returned to his homeland last season but injury ruled him out for six months and hes hardly featured for his new club, scoring just four goals in 16 appearances. DIOMANSY KAMARA FULHAM THE Senegal star (left) has waited over four years to make a significant impact with three different clubs in the Premier League -- and now hes made the breakthrough it looks like he might be back off to the Championship with Newcastle. Kamara, having missed most of last season with a knee injury, scored three in three at the tail end of last season but has quickly fallen back down the pecking order. On paper, he appears to have assets that neither Bobby Zamora or Andy Johnson possess. CSKA SOFIA 4-2-3-1 FULHAM 4-4-2 NevlandKamara SmallingBaird Riise Kelly Pantsil Davies Stockdale Greening POSSIBLE LINE-UPS Hodgson calls up Fulhams reserves BY GEOFF TEATHER ROY HODGSONS decision to make sweeping team changes aheadof tonightsopeningEuropa LeaguegroupgameagainstCSKA Sofia has been backed by Simon Davies. The inclusion of the Wales inter- national in Hodgsons starting line-up to face the Bulgarian League leaders is set to be one of nine changes to the side that beat Everton 2-1 at Craven Cottage on Sunday. Only goalkeeper David Stock- dale, who made his first-team debut against Everton in place of the injured Mark Schwarzer, and right-back John Pantsil are likely to keep their places. The heart of Fulhams defence will feature the untried pairing of Chris Baird and Chris Smalling, who starts with the first team for the first time. This against Sofias rampant Army Men, who have scored 14 goals without reply on their way to winning four times and drawing once in their five domestic games this season. Hodgson insisted his selection was not another slight on the Europa League, formerly the UEFA Cup, following the weak- teamdebaclesthatsawTottenham andAstonVillamakeignominious exits from the competition last year. Werenotneglectingthetourna- ment. I fully believe the team I put out will be very competitive, he said. Were very happy to be in this competition. Were look- ing forward to it and think itsagreatadventure,butits an adventure for the squad not just 11. But weve said all along our priority is the Premier League and Id take beating relegation over winning the Europa League every time. Davies(right)starting for the first time since bre a k i n g a foot towards the end of last season, said: Competition for places always brings successandeveryoneatthe club wants that. This was going to be a big test, whoever came out for us. But the lads here are going to get valuable experience from it and Im sure the manager wouldnt have brought us if he didnt think we werecapableof winning the game. The group stage of the EuropaLeagueseesUEFA experimenting with the placing of an extra official behind each goal with a brief to watch for penalty area incidents and to con- firm if the ball crosses the goal line. Moscow memories spur Tony CELTIC manager Tony Mowbray is looking to Russia for inspiration as his side prepare to take on Hapoel Tel Aviv in their Europa League opener at the Bloomfield stadium tonight. The Hoops dropped into the revamped second-tier European club competition after being knocked out at the Champions League play-off stage 5-1 on aggregate by Arsenal. However, in the preceding qualifier, the Parkhead men overturned a 1-0 home defeat by Dinamo Moscow with an impressive 2-0 win in the return game in Russia. A repeat of the win in Russia would be nice, the Parkhead boss said. The team have shown that they can be disciplined away from home in Europe. Even against Arsenal at the Emirates, for long, long spells we were very much in that game. BY HARRY LANE Everton to find out if refs have six appeal EVERTON boss David Moyes claims his club have been left in the dark about UEFAs plans to test-drive a new refereeing system with six officials this season. The Toffees will road-test the new idea, which will see two extra officials stand behind each goal, when they face AEK Athens tonight at Goodison Park in their opening Europa League Group I clash. Moyes is willing to give the new plan every chance, but says: The new rules regarding two extra assistants behind the goals is something we have been given very little detail about. There has been no advice from the referees body, I believe they will be able to tell the referees what they see and may even come onto the pitch. But if it helps to get decisions right in the end it will be a good thing. The Everton chief will give 10m Russian winger Diniyar Bilyaletdinov his full debut tonight and according to reports this morning is set to hand Lucas Neill a Premier League lifeline. The former West Ham skipper has been a free agent since leaving Upton Park in the summer and will undergo a medical today. BY JAMES GOLDMAN Live on Five, from 7.30pm (kick-off 8.05pm) In the dark: Moyes is puzzled by new system LATEST BETTING MATCH ODDS CSKA 13-8, Fulham 13-8, draw 12-5. FIRST GOALSCORER A Johnson 6-1, Delev 7-1, Kamara 15-2, Manchev 15-2, Nevland 8-1, Greening 16-1. prevailing 2-0 attNorwegian side Viking FK, with the Bulgarian outfi home in the 2005/06 UEFA Cup group stage . hisscoringclub,previousawithCSKAvisitedalsoDuffDamien cometoaSofiin3-3drewFCRoversBlackburnasthirdsides goals.awayontierst-roundfiCupUEFA2002/03athrough Were very happy to be in look-Werecompetition.this ing forward to it and think itsbutadventure,greataits an adventure for the squad ouralongallsaidweveBut Premiertheispriority takeIdandLeague overrelegationbeating Europathewinning time.everyLeague starting sincetimerstfithefor foo tabre a k i n g forCompetition bringsalwaysplaces theateveryoneandsuccess This was going to be a big test, whoever came out for us. But the lads here are going to get valuable UEFAseesLeagueEuropa thewithexperimenting cialoffiextraanofplacing awithgoaleachbehind to watch for penaltybrief area incidents and to con- the ball crosses therm iffi goal line. 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