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11 Jul 2019
© Presseye

Ballymena United's Europa League adventures hit the brakes in Sweden when they shipped seven goals without reply to former European Cup runners-up Malmö FF.

David Jeffrey's side faced an onslaught right from the start, almost falling behind on 17 minutes when Guillermo Molins rattled the crossbar from just outside the area.

Despite almost constant pressure, Ballymena almost stunned their hosts with the opener on 26 minutes through Adam Lecky who just missed making a connection with Steven McCullough's ball from the left while, not long after, Jude Winchester tested keeper Johan Dahlin with a curling effort.

However, two goals soon after the half-hour mark from Swedish international Markus Rosenberg sparked what turned out to be a torrid time for the visiting defence.

He kicked the scoring off on 31 minutes after rising highest to nod home a cross before, a couple of minutes later, pouncing on a mistake to beat Glendinning for a second time.

A third goal came just before the break. Erdal Rakip capitalised on another error to slot the ball under Glendinning but if United thought they would get some respite in the second half they were sorely mistaken.

Franz Brorsson clinically converted a corner just a minute after the restart before Rosenberg clocked up his hat-trick on 48 minutes after being afforded too much space inside the box.

Malmö's sixth arrived on 54 minutes when Molins knocked home a close range volley while Rakip added number seven with just over a quarter-of-an-hour remaining after rounding off a slick move.

Malmö FF: Dahlin, Safari, Rieks, Lewicki, Bachirou, Rosenberg, Molins, Rakip, Nielsen, Brorsson, Berget subs Melichárek (not used), Larsson (replaced Berget 59), Trautason (not used), Christiansen (not used), Innocent (replaced Bachirou 69), Antonsson (replaced Rosenberg 59)

Ballymena United: Glendinning, Kane, Whiteside, McCullough, Carville, McGrory, Balmer, Winchester, Ervin, Lecky, Millar subs McDermott (not used), Mayse (not used), McGinty (replaced Winchester 75), Harpur (not used), Friel (replaced Lecky 72), Burns (replaced Carville 51), Lavery (not used)