FHK Liepajas Metalurgs 0-2 FC Kärnten
Austrian side FC Kärnten seized the initiative in their UEFA Cup qualifying round first leg match by winning 2-0 away from home against FHK Liepajas Metalurgs of the Latvian Virsliga.
Kärnten did not have it all their own way and could have easily fallen behind in a first half dominated by the home side. But the turning point of the match came in the 52nd minute when Liepajas had defender Oskars Klava dismissed for a second bookable offence. Six minutes later Marijo Maric put the visitors ahead after meeting a cross from Patrick Jovanovic.
The hosts continued to scrap in search of an equaliser, but a great solo run from Carlos Juan Zuleta led to Kärnten's second as he rounded Liepajas keeper Aleksejs Krucs before squaring the ball to Stanko Bubalo to tap the ball into the empty net 12 minutes from time. Satisfied Kärnten coach Heinz Hochhauser said: "I am happy with the result. I think the dismissal was the key moment because we were struggling before that. But once that happened we took the initiative, scored the opening goal and then it was no problem for us to win the game."
Hochhauser's Latvian counterpart, Viktor Lukin, was less pleased. The Liepajas coach said: "In the first half we wasted three chances. In the second half the red card and the goal shocked us, but Kärnten deservedly won the match."
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