RSC Anderlecht will take a two-goal lead into the second leg of their UEFA Champions League third qualifying round tie with Wisla Kraków after victory in Brussels.
In the opening seconds, Walter Baseggio signalled Anderlecht's intent as he forced Wisla goakeeper Adam Piekutowski to save. And on 12 minutes, Anderlecht found the target when Ki-Hyeon Seol broke free on the left and fed Nenad Jestrovic to put the home team ahead.
Jestrovic and Aruna Dindane both had further first-half chances, but the next goal on 38 minutes came from Goran Lovre, who put the ball in the goal at his second attempt. Ironically, at that moment Anderlecht were down to ten men with the injured Jestrovic waiting on the sidelines to be substituted, Christian Wilhelmsson replacing him.
Home side in control
Anderlecht kept the pressure up following half-time, and Dindane finally got on to the scoresheet on the hour mark as he ran on to Olivier Doll's through-ball and slotted past Piekutowski.
Wisla did not give up, however, and 13 minutes from time earned an away goal to take back to Poland in a fortnight's time as Hannu Tihinen fouled Maciej Zurawski in the Anderlecht box and the Polish striker promptly stood up to convert the penalty.
That goal brought Anderlecht coach Hugo Broos's only criticism for his team after the game. "
I have seen an excellent Anderlecht today, with almost a perfect attack and defence. Almost I say, because of all the chances we wasted, and almost because the Poles managed to score one goal from the two chances they had over the whole match." Broos also revealed that Jestrovic has suffered a knee ligament injury and is doubtful for the return leg.
'Difficult for us'
Visiting coach Henryk Ksperczak praised his opponents. "At this moment they are a very good team who played very well," he said. "They had a lot of players changing position during the match, it was difficult for us to defend against those fast players.
It was a well-deserved victory, but we still have a match to play, so everything is still possible."