Newcastle, CSKA Moscow and AZ Alkmaar picked up victories Thursday in the first leg of the UEFA Cup quarterfinals.
Alan Shearer gave Newcastle the only goal it needed in a 1-0 victory over visiting Sporting Lisbon. AZ won 2-1 at Spain's Villarreal, handing the Spaniards their first home loss this season in the competition.
In the landslide of the night, CSKA Moscow overpowered Auxerre 4-0.
In the fourth quarterfinal, Austria Vienna rallied to draw 1-1 with Parma. The second legs are next Thursday with the semifinals set for April 28 and May 5.
The final of Europe's No. 2 club competition is May 18 in Lisbon.
At Newcastle, England, Shearer's first-half goal lifted Newcastle over Sporting. Shearer scored with a header in the 37th minute, his 19th goal of the season, off a free kick from Laurent Robert.
It was Shearer's 192nd goal for the club. The 34-year-old striker has scored in every European match he has played this season.
Newcastle coach Graeme Souness started midfielder Kieron Dyer, but left fellow midfielder Lee Bowyer on the bench. In the 63rd, Bowyer came on when Dyer picked up a leg injury.
The two got into a fight with 10 minutes remaining in the club's 3-0 loss to Aston Villa last weekend. Bowyer was apparently angry that Dyer didn't pass the ball to him enough.
Bowyer was banned for four domestic games, and Dyer was banned for three. Bowyer was also fined six weeks wage, about ?210,000 (305,000 euros ).
At Villarreal, Spain, Denny Landzaat and Robin Nelisse scored in each half to lead AZ Alkmaar over Villarreal 2-1. Juan Roman Riquelme scored for the hosts, but also missed a penalty which could have averted Villarreal's first home defeat in the competition.
It was also the first home game in the competition in which the Spaniards have given up a goal.
Villarreal, the only Spanish team to reach the last eight of either the UEFA Cup or the Champions League, fell behind in the 11th when Landzaat scored from the edge of the penalty area.
Lacking ineligible leading scorer Diego Forlan, Villarreal leveled three minutes later. Nelisse scored the winning goal in the 74th minute, following Jan Kromkamp's run and low pass from the left.
At Moscow, Yuri Zhirkov set up two goals and Sergei Ignashevich converted a penalty kick to lift CSKA Moscow to a 4-0 win over Auxerre, giving the Russians a big edge going into next week's second leg.
CSKA dominated early and had several more chances to score before taking the lead when Chidi Odia's shot from inside the box deflected in off Auxerre midfielder Lionel Mathis in the 21st minute.
Ignashevich doubled the lead, converting a penalty attempt in the 62nd. Nine minutes later, Vagner Love made it 3-0 from close range, and Zhirkov set up the final goal, working to the line and rolling it across to Rolan Gusev, who scored in the 78th.
The visitors were reduced to 10 men when Pascal Mignot was sent off in the 83rd on his second yellow card.
At Vienna, Austria, Sebastian Mila equalized in the 60th minute to help Austria Vienna hold Parma to a 1-1 draw. Mila scored at the near post after a pass from Stepan Vachousek.
Andrea Pisanu gave the Italian team the lead -- and an important away goal -- in the 34th minute. Pisanu beat goalkeeper Szabolcs Safar with a deflected shot.
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