FK Ventspils will take a commanding 3-0 lead into the second leg in Luxembourg after three goals in the final eleven minutes punctured the resilience of F91 Dudelange.
Roman Grygorchuk's charges endured a frustrating night until the visitors wilted in the final stages and conceded to Andrejs Butriks, Deniss Kačanovs and Vīts Rimkus. Daniel Da Mota tested home goalkeeper Andrejs Pavlovs early on as Marc Grosjean's side proved they provided a threat but, on 19 minutes, Ventspils spurned a simple chance when Igor Tigirlas somehow failed to convert Jevgenijs Kosmačovs's pass from close range.
After the break the tempo increased and Dudelange almost went in front on the hour mark, Sebastien Hareau's free-kick requiring a save from Pavlovs. Away custodian Jonathan Joubert then denied both Kačanovs and Vitālijs Astafjevs brilliantly but, as Dudelange defended in numbers late on, they were breached three times. Substitute Butriks elegantly chipped the ball over Joubert to break the deadlock on 79 minutes before two goals in as many minutes. Kačanovs headed in with four minutes remaining to double the lead and Rimkus shot precisely into the far corner for his team's third.