Zenit St. Petersburg Vs. Shakhtar Donetsk, 2011 UEFA Champions League: Hosts Take 1-0 Halftime Lead

It's been an intense first half at the Petrovski Stadium in St. Petersburg. Shakhtar Donetsk travelled to Russia in last place in Group G, but they only trailed leader APOEL Nicosia by three points and could easily vault themselves back into contention with a win against hosts Zenit St. Petersburg. It became apparent very quickly that a win was unlikely, however - the home side came out all guns blazing and never let up.

Zenit were utterly dominant in the first half, outshooting Shakhtar 15-1 and having almost all of the possession, but thanks to the amazing form of Oleksandr Rybka and some poor finishing failed to score for 45 minutes. It was looking like a deeply frustrating evening for the hosts, who were by far the better side, but Nicolas Loembarts finally put them ahead at the very end of first half stoppage time with a neat header from a corner.

So, Zenit need another goal to kill this off, but they'll be very happy with their performance in the first half. It's a different story for Shakhtar, who are lucky to just be one goal down. Their keeper has provided them with a lifeline in this tie. Can they take it?

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