KR Reykjavik 2 Cork City 1 (KR won 3-2 on agg)
Cork City’s first European odyssey in seven years came to an abrupt end as they were disappointingly dumped out of the Uefa Europa League after failing to make their advantage count against KR Reykjavik in Iceland.
Having drawn 1-1 in the first leg at Turner's Cross, City boss John Caulfield was confident that his side could up their performance in the return fixture, but they did not possess enough quality to make their way into the next stage.
After being subjected to a barrage of KR attacks in the opening 10 minutes, Mark O’Sullivan fortuitously put the Leesiders ahead against the run of play with just 13 minutes on the clock.
Their task was ostensibly made easier when Skuli Jon Fridgeirsson was sent off for a second yellow card shortly before half-time.
However, Bjarni Gudjonssson’s side maintained their composure despite the disadvantage and punished City’s profligacy to ensure their passage into the second qualifying round of the competition.
Though they possessed the numerical advantage, John Caulfield’s side struggled to make any sort of breakthrough and were penned into their own box for the majority of the game.
As they toiled to contain KR, City were deflated when Palmi Palmason struck an equaliser with just 15 minutes remaining, forcing the game into extra time.
Although they had less players on the pitch the hosts pressed relentlessly and struck the woodwork on a number of occasions as they sought a decisive goal. They eventually found the net through Jacob Schoop, who capitalised on poor defending to dribble his way through the defence and slot past Mark McNulty.
Elsewhere, Linfield lost 4-3 to NSI Runavik in a wild match in the Faroe Islands, but that was enough for the Northern Irish side to go through 5-4.
Glenavon lost 3-0 away to Belarusian side Shakhtyor Soligorsk to complete a 5-1 aggregate defeat while Irish Cup winners Glentoran lost 3-0 to MSK Zilnia in Slovakia to go down 7-1 on aggregate as Matej Jelic bagged a hat-trick.
CORK CITY: McNulty, Dunleavy, Murray, Bennett, O'Connor, Gaynor, Healy, Miller (Kearney, 65 mins), Buckley, Sheppard (O'Flynn, 80 mins), O'Sullivan (Morrissey, 107 mins).
KR REYKJAVIK: Magnusson, Josepsson, G. Gunnarsson (Ragnarsson, 72 mins), R Christiansen, S Fridgeirsson, J. Saevarsson (A Ormarsson, 63 mins), Hauksson, Schoop, Palmason, Martin (G Sigurdarson, 104 mins), S Frederiksen.
Referee: A Anufrijevs (Latvia).