Late goals from substitute Joan Capdevilla and César Martín gave RC Deportivo La Coruña a 3-1 win against RC Lens, but having missed a hatful of chances in this UEFA Champions League Group G tie, there was a certain sense of relief at the Riazor stadium.
Capdevilla raced on to a Roy Makaay pass after 79 minutes to beat Guillaume Warmuz with a fierce drive, and César Martín headed a goal from a corner five minutes later to finally kill off stern resistance from Lens and erase the memory of some wasteful finishing.
Javier Irureta would have been disappointed to see his side go into the half-time interval a goal down after Daniel Moreira got on to the end of a fine John Utaka ball from the right to give the visitors a tenth-minute lead.
Having started the game looking the brighter side, Deportivo conceded on the break and were then frustrated by a combination of disappointing finishing, desperate defending and excellent goalkeeping from Warmuz.
Warmuz in form
After making a fine save to stop Diego Tristán's 20-metre effort on seven minutes, Warmuz was delighted to see Rigobert Song cut out a dangerous Roy Makaay cross after 14 minutes. He was called into action again himself a minute later when he charged out to deny Héctor Berenguel a shot on goal.
Tristán then missed the target with a header from an 18th-minute Fran González cross, and he was guilty of an even worse miss from a Fran free-kick after 31 minutes, heading wide with Warmuz's goal gaping in front of him.
Sibierski goes close
Fran then made a mistake of his own as he managed to lose the ball between his legs a minute later from Lionel Scaloni's cross, and Deportivo were nearly made to pay for their profligacy as José Molina had to get down to his right to palm an Antoine Sibierski header to safety as Lens made a rare break forward after 36 minutes.
A minute later, Warmuz just about saved an angled Makaay shot from inside his area, but he made a much more impressive stop three minutes later to deny Scaloni from close range. Lens had survived as far as half-time, but they were on the ropes.
In the end, Deportivo were back on level terms just four minutes after the restart as Makaay allowed a ball from the right to drop in front of him before beating Warmuz with a sensational volley, but even though Lens rarely escaped from their own half in the next 20 minutes, Deportivo's victory looked far from certain.
When Tristán turned Song superbly inside the Lens penalty area after 62 minutes, a goal looked certain, but with Warmuz already committed, the striker stunned the home crowd by driving the ball wide from barely five metres.
Worse was to come nine minutes later as an embarrassing mix-up in the Lens area left Makaay with the chance to strike into an open goal from near the penalty spot, only for Song to fly in from the left to scoop his fiercely driven shot off the line.
For a while, it looked like Lens would earn the point that some might feel Joël Muller's side's sheer resilience deserved, but as Deportivo produced their late double, the French side were left to ponder a Champions League future which - with just one point from three games - could be extremely short.