Napoli took a huge step towards the UEFA Cup second qualifying round with a 1-0 victory against Panionios in Greece.
The Serie A outfit, returning to European action after a 14-year absence, owed their win to a large degree of luck as Panionios twice struck the crossbar in the first half.
Yet it is the Azzurri who will take an away goal into the second leg at the San Paolo next weekend thanks to Mariano Bogliacino's close-range finish on the half-hour mark after German Denis entered the penalty area and crossed.
It was proving not to be Panionios' night and despite Leandro Rinaudo's dismissal with 15 minutes remaining, the visitors held out for the win.
The Azzurri are now strong favourites to complete the job in Naples next Saturday.
UEFA Intertoto Cup Third Round
First Leg: 20 July 2008
Panionios 0-1 Napoli
Second Leg: 26 July 2008
Napoli v Panionios
> Winners qualify for the UEFA Cup Second Qualifying Round.
UEFA Cup Second Qualifying Round
Draw: 1 August 2008
First Leg: 14 August 2008
Second Leg: 28 August 2008
> Winners qualify for the UEFA Cup First Round. AC Milan, Sampdoria and Udinese enter the tournament at this stage.