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Finns produce quality strikes as Port Talbot riled by stadium snub.

Byline: Genquip Stadium

TEAM PORT TALBOT TPS TURKU 0 4 Agg: 1-7 PORT TALBOT crashed out of Europe at the first hurdle last night, undone by two quality first-half goals.

Both were rifled in from 25 yards, first from Batatunde Wusu on 25 minutes and, five minutes later, a cracker from midfielder Toni Kolehmainen.

Two second-half goals were added by the visitors from Finland as the Welsh Premier outfit tumbled out of the Europa League, comprehensively beaten 7-1 on aggregate.

If any more incentive had been needed to go out and overturn a 3-1 first-leg deficit, it came a couple of hours before a ball was even kicked when Uefa officials and the entire Turku side refused to get kitted out in the changing rooms.

Instead, they arrived at the Genquip stadium fully kitted out, riling Port Talbot manager Mark Jones.

Uefa officer Michel Pralong said: "The ground is too small. We asked for certain things to be done and they have been completed but you cannot build a new stadium in two weeks.

"The away side asked if they could change at their hotel and that was accepted.

The officials asked the same and that was granted as well."

Jones said: "The ground was inspected by Uefa and everything was passed, I think it is very disrespectful for Turku to have decided to change away from the ground - this is what home advantage is all about."

Jones' side came close to opening the scoring in the third minute as a cross from Lee John was met by a Nicholas Palmer header which missed the target by inches.

The part-timers held their own early on against the full-time Finnish team thanks to a stubborn and well-organised defence marshalled by Matthew Rees. But a break from midfield saw Turku's Riku Riski pick out striker Wusu and he curled the ball around Port Talbot goalkeeper Lee Kendall from long range.

Things got worse for the home team when, following a corner, the ball fell to midfielder Kolehmainen, who found the top left-hand corner of the net.

The visitors were now in complete control and they looked to have more ideas going forward and a cutting edge to their passing game.

Turku managed a third in the 67th minute as Riku Riski toe-poked an effort from inside the area past keeper Kendall.

Minutes later Martin Rose's header was turned onto the crossbar by keeper Jani Tumomala. But lack of match fitness showed as the visitors added a fourth through sub Roope Riski in the 90th minute.

Port Talbot: L Kendall, L Grist, K Lewis, M Rees, L Surman, M Rose, L McCreesh (L Brown 75), S Barrow, L John, N Holland (D Brooks 45), N Palmer. Subs: L De-Vulgt, D Fahiya, D Thomas, D Burnett, G Phillips
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Jul 9, 2010
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