Zenit St. Petersburg vs. Anderlecht, 2012 UEFA Champions League: Final score 1-0, home side steals three points

Epsilon

A lackluster Zenit side won a penalty to grab a much needed three points from Anderlecht.

Anderlecht had excellent chances at the Petrovsky Stadium on Wednesday night, but failed to take them. They also defended very well, save for one bad error. Those two factors, combined with some very inconsistent officiating, led to a 1-0 Zenit St. Petersburg victory.

The first half was played in pouring rain and was understandably sloppy. Hulk, who was the most dangerous man for the hosts on the night, had a good chance in the 19th minute that he pulled just wide of Silvio Proto's goal. Aleksandr Kerzhakov and Anderlecht's Guillaume Gillet also had excellent chances in the first half, but failed to take them.

Anderlecht were the much more dangerous side in the beginning of the second half, but missed multiple excellent chances to go ahead. However, they rarely forced Vyacheslav Malafeev into saves, as most of their chances were killed off by either their own poor touches or Zenit blocks.

In the 72nd minute, Bram Nuytinck pulled down Aleksandr Anyukov by the shoulder and the referee pointed to the spot. Kerzhakov stepped up and finished, scoring the game's only goal.

Not long after, Tom De Sutter looked to get pulled down in the exact same manner as Anyukov on the other end, but the referee waived play on. They would create a couple more shots before the end of the match, but never looked the same after Zenit's goal, and go home with no points and in last place in their group.

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