Werder Bremen scored three times in 18 minutes to beat Sampdoria 3-1 in the first leg of their football Champions League playoff.
Clemens Fritz struck with a superb left-footed strike in the 51st minute before Torsten Frings converted a penalty in the 67th and Claudio Pizarro added a third for the Bundesliga side.
The Italians grabbed a late away goal when Giampaolo Pazzini netted in the 90th minute.
Elsewhere, Hapoel Tel Aviv put themselves in the driving seat with a 3-2 win at Austrian champions Salzburg while Anderlecht will be happy with a 2-2 draw at Partizan Belgrade.
Swiss champions Basel beat Moldovans Sheriff Tiraspol 1-nil thanks to a Valentin Stocker goal and Braga defeated Sevilla by the same scoreline in Portugal.