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Tottenham pay penalty as Soldado misses sitter

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Victor Giuliano (L) vies with Tottenham Hotspur FC's Etienne Capoue, during the UEFA Europe League round of 32 football match Dniepropetrovsk vs Tottenham in Dnipropetrovsk

Victor Giuliano (L) vies with Tottenham Hotspur FC's Etienne Capoue, during the UEFA Europe League round of 32 football match Dniepropetrovsk vs Tottenham in Dnipropetrovsk

Tottenham's Jan Vertonghen, left, challenges for the ball against Matheus of Ukrainian Dnipro

Tottenham's Jan Vertonghen, left, challenges for the ball against Matheus of Ukrainian Dnipro

Tottenham's Danny Rose, top, challenges for the ball against Roman Zozulya  of Ukrainian Dnipro

Tottenham's Danny Rose, top, challenges for the ball against Roman Zozulya of Ukrainian Dnipro

Tottenham Hotspur's manager Tim Sherwood

Tottenham Hotspur's manager Tim Sherwood

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Victor Giuliano (L) vies with Tottenham Hotspur FC's Etienne Capoue, during the UEFA Europe League round of 32 football match Dniepropetrovsk vs Tottenham in Dnipropetrovsk

Tottenham's reported January target Yevhen Konoplyanka scored a decisive penalty in their first-leg clash in Ukraine.

The 24-year-old saw a deadline-day move to Liverpool collapse, with Spurs also linked along the way, though coach Tim Sherwood has always distanced the club from a deal.

Konoplyanka himself said he does not see the round-of-32 tie as an audition for a summer transfer, but he was lively throughout and gave full-back Kyle Naughton an unsettled evening.

The penalty was awarded with just 10 minutes remaining after referee Antonio Miguel Lahoz had turned down several claims from both sides throughout the game.

Konoplyanka stepped up and scored with the air of a player with the confidence to move on to bigger and better things, but for now he has given Dnipro and former Spurs boss Juande Ramos a lead to defend at White Hart Lane next week.

It could have been a different story had Roberto Soldado not missed in spectacular style earlier in the second half.

Spurs boasted a 100pc record in getting out of their group under previous head coach Andre Villas-Boas, but, with Sherwood taking charge of his first European game, it was a second-half sitter turned over the crossbar by summer signing Soldado which he will be left pondering.

Dnipro supporters sang the Ukrainian national anthem during the minute's silence before kick-off, with black armbands also sported by both teams to honour those who have lost their lives during the political protests in capital Kiev in recent weeks.

With a national day of mourning also declared for yesterday, many supporters stayed away from the Dnipro Arena, but those who did make the journey were richly rewarded.

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