After a poor first half, PSV Eindhoven improved after the break to comfortably defeat Apollon Limassol 3-0 in the first-leg of their playoff.

PSV went into the game with new signing Kostas Mitroglou on the bench, while Olivier Boscagli replaced the suspended Michal Sadilek.

Just like the 0-0 draw against Haugesund last week, PSV struggled from the start on Thursday night and they created very little in the first-half. The best chance fell for Apollon Limassol with Jeroen Zoet having to make a fine save to deny Giannis Giannotas.

Just minutes into the second half, PSV took the lead through a swift counter attack that saw Donyell Malen burst into the box before crossing for Mohamed Ihattaren to fire in the opener.

In the 55th minute, Erick Gutierrez made a great tackle in midfield which led to Cody Gakpo curling an excellent strike into the top corner from just outside the box for PSV’s second.

PSV were full of confidence and a third goal came on the hour mark as Boscagli’s cross was headed into the patch of Denzel Dumfries, who had a simple tap-in at the back post.

After the third goal, Apollon improved and the visitors came close to netting an away goal on several occasions.

Mitroglou was handed his debut with ten minutes left and he should have got an assist to his name when he crossed perfectly for Malen, but the attacker somehow fired wide from point blank range.

The game finished 3-0 and PSV take a comfortable lead to Cyprus next week.

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