Musa fires CSKA past Sporting, into Champions League groups
KHIMKI, Russia (AP) — Ahmed Musa fired CSKA Moscow into the Champions League group stage with a late winner as the Russian team mounted a second-half comeback to beat Sporting Lisbon 3-1 on Wednesday and 4-3 on aggregate.
However, it was a controversial win, as one of CSKA’s goals appeared to be scored with an elbow. Sporting coach Jorge Jesus was strongly critical of the refereeing, especially when Islam Slimani put the goal in the net only for the referee to apparently rule the ball had gone out of play in the buildup.
“In (the first leg in) Lisbon, I think they didn’t give us a clear penalty we should have had, and here the goal that was scored by the Algerian striker was clean,” Jesus said. “Obviously that doesn’t excuse us because we could have had extra time but we conceded a poor third goal.”
Teofilo Gutierrez had given Sporting a 1-0 lead on the night and 3-1 advantage on aggregate with his 36th-minute opening goal before CSKA’s fightback began.
“I’m really happy we were able to win a match that wasn’t going our way and to display character, willpower and skill,” CSKA coach Leonid Slutsky said.
After scoring in last week’s first leg, Seydou Doumbia hauled his team back into Wednesday’s match with two goals. The first came four minutes after the break as an Alan Dzagoev free-kick bounced off a defender and then goalkeeper Rui Patricio before Doumbia bundled it in at the second attempt, the ball apparently bouncing off his elbow.
Doumbia added his second on 72 minutes when Musa broke down the left flank and crossed low for the Ivorian to score.
With the game headed for extra time, Musa scored his 85th-minute winning goal with a powerful shot off a pass from Alan Dzagoev.
Musa was stretchered off in stoppage time after being injured by a desperate lunge from Joao Mario, who was shown a straight red card.
CSKA is in the group stage for the fourth time in five years.