AMSTERDAM – Eight Americans suited up Europa League group-phase action on Thursday, with Steve Cherundolo and Hannover 96 maintaining their Group L lead by getting the better of Alejandro Bedoya's Helsingborg 2-1 after a late flurry of goals.
Both Americans went the distance in a match the led vivsiting German side led after 12 minutes. Bedoya helped set up Álvaro Santos' equalizer midway through stoppage time, but Didier Konan Ya scored from a corner kick shortly after to twist the plot back in Hannover's favor.
Elsewhere, Mikkel Diskerud and Rosenborg missed a chance to reach second place in Group K, conceding twice in the final 12 minutes for a 2-1 home loss to Ukrainian heavyweights Metalist Kharkiv.
The US international's 89th-minute yellow card foul was punished further when the resulting free kick set up Xavier for the winner. Rosenborg are now four points adrift of the top half of their group after three matches.
Terrence Boyd's Rapid Vienna, meanwhile, are below Rosenborg in the group basement following a 4-0 home loss to Bayer Leverkusen.
Brought on at the break, the Rapid forward went close to scoring twice. With David Yelldell watching from the Leverkusen bench, Boyd rolled agonizingly wide on a breakaway and then saw another effort denied by a fine save mere moments later.
Clint Dempsey and Tottenham Hotspur still have plenty to do in Group J after rallying to a 1-1 draw against Maribor in Slovenia. The US star put one shot on frame from distance during his 15 minutes of play, but it proved light work for the home netminder. Spurs remained third in the group, two points shy of the top.
Group E action saw Josh Gatt work 70 minutes as Molde FK were dominated in a 2-0 loss at Steaua Bucharest. The winger had one good scoring chance just after the break, but could not keep his shot on frame. Molde slipped to third place, but stand only a point out of second.
Bryan Gerzicich saw yellow as Hapoel Ironi Kiryat Shmona hit bottom in Group I with a 3-1 defeat at Sparta Prague. The defensive midfielder went into the book shortly before the end of his 77-minute shift.