Aberdeen 3-0 Ventspils
Jayden Stockley and Wes Burns scored their first goals for Aberdeen as Derek McInnes' side saw off Ventspils in the Europa League second round qualifier first leg at Pittodrie.
The Dons initially toiled to get the better of the Latvian side, but Stockey bulleted in a cross from Jonny Hayes.
Within five minutes Adam Rooney's left foot shot made it two.
And a minute after coming off the bench for his debut, on-loan Bristol City winger Burns headed in a third.
The Latvians offered little other than a half chance in the opening 45 minutes, and the win means the Dons will head to the Baltics confident they can finish the job.
McInnes's side were keen to exorcise the ghosts of Luxembourg and last week's shock loss to Fola Esch, and they almost grabbed the lead inside three minutes as Kenny McLean headed a Hayes cross over.
However, there was an anxiety about the Dons after that with their Latvian visitors happy to sit in and frustrate with loose balls and an inconsistent referee irking the home fans.
Indeed Ventspils missed an opportunity to plunder an away goal when centre half Nikita Kolesovs sliced an effort well wide after goalkeeper Joe Lewis flapped at a well driven corner.
Hayes and Rooney combined with the latter firing wide with the ball just behind him, before Graeme Shinnie was unlucky to see his effort saved by Maksims Uvarenko in the tie's first save of note.
Niall McGinn was a driving force for the hosts and almost opened the scoring from a well struck free-kick just after half-time though it was well saved by Uvarenko.
Ventspils offered little and if anything, appeared inferior to Fola with little invention or ambition.
But whilst the score-line was blank, the doubts remained.
That was until McInnes rolled the dice, sending Stockley on for McLean and within seconds he headed a Hayes cross home at the far post.
The lead was doubled five minutes later as the tireless Rooney calmly rolled home into the bottom left.
McInnes was visibly keen for more and the potential tie-killer arrived in the first minute of injury time as Burns scored almost instantly upon his arrival from the bench.
It was a beautiful reverse header from a McGinn corner and the young Welshman was no sooner arriving at Pittodrie on loan from Bristol City than he was taking the acclaim of the home crowd.
- 5TaylorBooked at 52mins
- 7McLeanBooked at 54minsSubstituted forStockleyat 68'minutes
- 9RooneySubstituted forBurnsat 89'minutes
- 25RuginsBooked at 88mins
- 14TidenbergsSubstituted forZulevsat 81'minutes
- 15AlekseevSubstituted forSvarupsat 87'minutes
- João Pinheiro
- Shots on Target