Wisła Kraków earned a precious one-goal victory against ten-man Skonto FC thanks to Renārs Rode's own goal in Riga.
In a game of few chances it was Rode's own goal which proved to be the difference between the sides, the 22-year-old turning into his own net from Michael Lamey's powerful low cross shortly before the break. The Latvian champions were reduced to ten men on 83 minutes when Juris Laizāns received his second yellow card and were unable to find that elusive equaliser.
After a cautious opening to the match it was the visitors who began to make their superior possession count and were rewarded for that dominance five minutes before half-time. Rode's outstretched leg turning the ball into his own net to give Robert Maaskant's side the lead.
Second-half substitute Bally Smart came close to equalising for the hosts with his first touch but Sergei Pareiko saved smartly to preserve the visitors' slender advantage.
The Latvian champions were then reduced to ten men with seven minutes remaining, Laizāns seeing red for his second yellow card in just over half an hour. However, Skonto remained undeterred and were unfortunate not to equalise right at the end through substitute Kristaps Blanks, who fired narrowly over under pressure from Osman Chávez. The two teams meet again in Krakow on 19 July with the tie hanging in the balance.
©UEFA.com 1998-2017. All rights reserved.