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Lukaku at the double as Anderlecht cruise through

RSC Anderlecht 3-0 The New Saints FC (agg: 6-1)
Seventeen-year-old striker Romelu Lukaku came on as a substitute and scored twice as the Belgian champions eased into the play-offs.

Romelu Lukaku (centre) is congratulated after one of his goals against TNS
Romelu Lukaku (centre) is congratulated after one of his goals against TNS ©AFP

RSC Anderlecht eased into the UEFA Champions League play-offs at the expense of The New Saints FC with a 3-0 win on the night and 6-1 aggregate success.

The Belgian champions, who were already well placed to progress from their third qualifying round tie after last week's 3-1 win in Wrexham, had one foot firmly in Friday's play-off draw when Tom De Sutter put them ahead in the return. Seventeen-year-old striker Romelu Lukaku, returning from a knee injury, came off the bench just before the hour and added two goals of his own to condemn TNS to a comprehensive defeat.

Indeed, the Welsh titleholders were overrun from the off and found themselves behind after 17 minutes, De Sutter collecting Sacha Kljestan's pass and shooting low under goalkeeper Paul Harrison. De Sutter had the chance to add a second two minutes before half-time but sent Thomas Chatelle's cross over the bar, leaving Lukaku to inflict the lasting damage.

The burly forward, scorer of 15 Belgian First League goals last term, was introduced after 59 minutes and had his name on the scoresheet ten minutes later. Jan Lecjaks did the leg work and sent in an inviting delivery which Lukaku turned in at the near post − his first competitive goal since 21 March. His second arrived five minutes later when he unleashed a devastating drive which added further gloss to his side's comfortable path through.