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Janssen jewel puts Twente on top

FC Twente 1-0 Werder Bremen
The visitors had most of the play but Twente are ahead thanks to a magnificent long-range Theo Janssen strike.

Janssen jewel puts Twente on top
Janssen jewel puts Twente on top ©UEFA.com

A superb goal from Theo Janssen gave FC Twente victory in the first leg of their UEFA Europa League round of 32 tie with Werder Bremen.

The Bundesliga side had the upper hand in the first half, with Claudio Pizarro in particular coming close, but it was the hosts who went in ahead thanks to a long-range rocket from Janssen. Bremen dominated most of the second half as well, however Twente held firm to give themselves every chance of reaching the last 16 next Thursday.

Werder had the first decent effort, Sander Boschker getting down smartly to parry Naldo's drive from distance. The visitors were in command and almost broke the deadlock midway through the first half as Marko Marin shot just wide. Minutes later, Marin fooled the Twente keeper by dummying Claudio Pizarro's low cross, only for the ball to drift a fraction wide of the post.

Twente finally threatened after 27 minutes, Theo Janssen whipping in a free-kick from the right that Tim Wiese touched on to the bar. Werder quickly imposed themselves again, and a defensive mix-up left Pizarro clean through on Boschker, but the Twente goalkeeper saved from close range.

Bremen would come to rue that moment. Six minutes before the break Janssen picked up the ball just past the halfway line, took a few strides forward then lashed a magnificent shot into the net from all of 30 metres.

Despite that setback, the visitors continued to dominate after the break. Ex-Twente midfielder Peter Niemeyer forced Boschker into a fingertip save with a curled effort from the edge of the box and though Wiese had to perform acrobatics to deny Janssen his second minutes later, it was fleeting pressure. Pizarro fizzed another drive just wide on 66 minutes, but as the game progressed the Werder threat waned.