Spurs draws 0-0 with Lazio, Atletico wins 3-0

Associated Press Modified: September 20, 2012 at 5:35 pm •  Published: September 20, 2012
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MILAN (AP) — Tottenham had two goals disallowed in a 0-0 draw at home to Serie A joint leader Lazio in their opening game of the Europa League group stage on Thursday, while defending champion Atletico Madrid cruised to a 3-0 win at Hapoel Tel-Aviv.

United States international Clint Dempsey had a goal ruled out for offside halfway through the first period, before Steven Caulker saw his header struck off for his push on Lazio's Stefano Mauri.

Dempsey disagreed with the referee's decision, which prevented him from scoring his first goal for Spurs since signing from Fulham on the Aug. 31 deadline day.

"I thought I was level with the line," he said. "It was a good ball from (Gareth) Bale and as it went in I thought I'd opened my account but it was waved offside.

"That's the way it goes sometimes, they defended well, set up to counter-attack and were tough to break down. But we had some chances and were unlucky not to get the goal tonight."

Alvaro Gonzalez hit the post in the first half for Lazio, which failed to win for the first time this season.

"Playing against this team in London, on their pitch, isn't so easy," Lazio coach Vlado Petkovic said. "I think today we showed our capacity for suffering as well as assuming responsibility at certain moments."

In Israel, Cristian Rodriguez, Diego Costa and Raul Garcia all scored as Atletico made easy work of Hapoel, despite playing without star striker Radamel Falcao, who was rested for the Group B opener.

Elsewhere, three-time winner Liverpool beat Young Boys 5-3 in a thrilling match in Switzerland, Inter Milan needed a last-minute equalizer to draw 2-2 at home to Rubin Kazan and French league leader Marseille scraped a similar 2-2 draw at Fenerbahce.

Substitute Jonjo Shelvey scored Liverpool's fourth goal only 10 minutes after coming off the bench, before sealing the result two minutes from time. Teenager Andre Wisdom scored Liverpool's second on his debut, after an own goal by Juhani Ojala had given the Premier League side an early lead.

Sebastian Coates added Liverpool's other goal in his first European match.

Raphael Nuzzolo, Ojala and Gonzalo Zarate found the net for Young Boys, which briefly led in the second half.

"We have come away with a young team into a European game and I want to talk about the five goals we scored which were absolutely magnificent," Liverpool coach Brendan Rodgers said. "Of course we could have defended better and there is no question the three goals we gave away were disappointing."

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