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Swiss Football League runners-up FC Thun are on the brink of a first appearance in the UEFA Champions League group stage following a first-leg win in their third qualifying round tie at Swedish champions Malmö FF.
Brazilian new signing Adriano Pimenta scored the only goal eleven minutes before half-time, latching on to a delicate right-wing cross from Andreas Gerber to fire in from the edge of the area.
Malmö goalkeeper Mattias Asper will be disappointed by his attempt to get a hand on the ball while the home side also missed three great chances to equalise, including hitting the bar and seeing another effort cleared off the line.
The visitors, who claimed the scalp of FC Dynamo Kyiv in the previous round, survived an early onslaught from the Allsvenskan title-holders as 19-year-old Marcus Pode squandered two opportunities to give his side the lead.
Twice he broke clear only to see his first one-on-one effort rebound off the goalkeeper's foot and his second rattle the woodwork. But the goal seemed to settle Thun, and their game plan began to stifle Malmö, who rarely threatened to get back on level terms.
Off the line
Indeed, the hosts were mostly restricted to half-chances, with their own Brazilian Afonso Alves manufacturing a couple of those. However, Alves came closest to restoring parity midway through the second half when Daniel Andersson chipped the ball to veteran Finnish striker Jari Litmanen in the box. Litmanen's lay-off found the Brazilian whose shot was cleared off the line by Ljubo Miličević.
This seemed to knock the stuffing out of Malmö, and Thun saw out the remainder of the match in relative comfort, knowing if they avoid defeat in a fortnight's time they will make club history.
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