Final scoreline harsh on plucky Wingmakers
- Published: Thursday, 02 July 2015 20:54
AIRBUS chances of progressing to the second qualifying round of the Europa League look to be over after a 3-1 home defeat at the hands of NK Lokomotiva.
But the final scoreline was harsh on the Wingmakers, who deservedly led their Croatian opponents at the break before being hit three times in the second period.
After Tony Gray had sent an early strike wide inside the first 10 seconds, Damir Sovsic sent a warning of how dangerous he would prove with a shot just over the bar.
Skipper Andy Jones had a half chance for Airbus from Jay Owen's miskicked effort but Franko Andrijasevic was just wide with a snap shot for the visitors.
The deadlock was broken on 28 minutes when Chris Budrys made a nuisance of himself from a Lee Owens cross and Wayne Riley pounced on a loose ball to fire Airbus in front.
James Coates made a good save from a long range Ivan Fiolic shot before Budrys was inches wide from adding a second from a Gray cross.
Good value for their half time lead, Airbus soon found themselves back on level terms as Sovsic scored from a great counter attacking move.
Mirko Maric went close to adding another before tapping home a Brucic cross on the hour to put the Croatians in front.
Airbus went close to levelling when a Tom Field free kick was parried by the Lokomotiv keeper only for Ryan Wignall's drive to be cleared off the line.
And they immediately found themselves 3-1 down as sub Marco Kolar tapped home.
Coates prevented the visitors from adding another, saving a Sovsic penalty after McGinn was adjudged to have brought down Kolar.
Airbus deserved another goal to keep the second leg alive, but Mike Pearson spurned a chance when he blazed over from close range after a Field free kick had been only partially cleared.
Photo (above): Wayne Riley celebrates his goal with Chris Budrys and (below) Damir Sovsic scores the Croatian equaliser.