FC Salzburg proved too strong for Hibernians as a penalty just past the half-hour paved the way for a 3-0 win in the first leg of the UEFA Champions League second qualifying round at the Hibernians Stadium on Tuesday.
Mark Miller made one change to the team which defeated FC Infonet Tallinn 1-0 last week as the returning Andrei Agius replaced Marco Sahanek with the Paolites adopting a more cautious approach.
The visitors managed to break the deadlock on the 32nd minute when Jackson Lima handled the ball inside the area off Munas Dabbur’s cross from the left; referee Fran Jovic ordered a penalty and Valon Berisha converted from the penalty spot.
Three minutes later, Red Bull doubled the score when Berisha sent Hee-Chan Hwang through and the latter slotted the ball past the Hibs custodian.
In a counter-attack for Hibernians, Jorginho advanced on the left but his rising shot ended just over the bar on the 38th.
Six minutes in the second half, a close-range effort by Takumi Munamino was blocked by Hogg. However the Japanese striker was not to be denied on the 54th minute when a shot from the left by Dabbur was blocked by the Hibs custodian with the ball bouncing on Minamino before hitting the foot of the upright and ending at the back of the net.
Four minutes from time, Salzburg were reduced to ten men after Valon Berisha was sent off by referee Jovic for a reckless challenge on Rodolfo Soares in midfield.
Hibs could have reduced the gap four minutes in added time but substitute Jurgen Degabriele’s effort from inside the area was neutralised by Walke.
The second leg will be played at the Red Bull Arena in Salzburg on Wednesday 19.
HIBS Andrew Hogg, Martin Kreuzriegler, Rui da Gracia, Jackson Lima, Rodolfo Soares, Marcelo Dias (76′ Joseph Mbong), Bjorn Kristensen (84′ Jurgen Degabriele), Clayton Failla (64’ Marco Sahanek), Johann Bezzina, Andrei Agius, Jorginho.
SALZBURG Alexander Walke, Paulo Miranda, Duje Caleta-Car, Reinhold Yabo (75′ Marc Rzatkowski), Diadie Samassekou, Mundas Dabbur, Valentino Lazaro, Valon Berisha, Andreas Ulmer, Takumi Minamino (63’ Hannes Wolf), Hee-Chan Hwang (70′ Fredrik Gulbrandsen).
Referee: Fran Jovic (CRO)
Assistant Referees: Ivica Madrid, Hrvoje Radic (CRO)
Fourth Official: Igor Pajac (CRO)