Champions League: Porto 1 – 2 Atlético
Rojiblancos come from behind to grab three important points
Atlético claimed a huge victory against Porto to take charge of their UEFA Champions League group on Tuesday night. After going behind to a Jackson Martínez header, the red-and-whites came back to claim the three points thanks to goals by Godín and Arda.
The first half at the Dragão was one to forget for the Rojiblancos. From the start, they were put under pressure and forced back by the Portuguese, who were quickly rewarded for their superb start to the game.
An excellent set piece delivery from winger Josué was met by forward Jackson Martínez, who managed to shake off Godín and beat Courtois with a diving header from close range in the 16th minute.
Once the Portista storm began to settle, the Rojiblancos slowly started to get into the game, and created a few opportunities of their own.
After a good move down the right, Juanfran cut the ball back for Arda, but the Turk sent his shot over. And a little later, Raúl García struck the crossbar with a header from a Gabi corner kick.
But on the stroke of half-time, Porto almost doubled their lead. Wingman Silvestre Varela was found by Jackson Martínez, but his powerful shot was stopped by Courtois.
At half-time, Cholo intervened and substituted Cristian Rodríguez for the anonymous David Villa. The roles were then reversed, as his Atléticos opened the second half on the offensive, and Porto were pinned back.
The equaliser couldn’t be far off, and in the 58th minute, it finally arrived. Compensating for his earlier mistake, Godín rose above a host of Porto defenders to head the ball into goal from a set piece delivered by Gabi.
Afterwards, Atlético looked the stronger team and got a number of chances to decide the game. First, Arda sent through Raúl García with a beautiful pass, but the Spaniard saw his effort saved by Helton.
Then, Miranda missed a header at the front post from Gabi’s corner kick. In the 86th minute, the winning goal was scored at last, again from a set piece.
Gabi surprised his opponents by threading his free kick past the wall to Arda, who fired the ball past Helton and into goal from close range.
The Rojiblancos’ victory means they’re three points clear of second-placed Porto now. Austria Wien and Zenit sit in third and fourth respectively. They drew earlier on Tuesday evening and are both on a point.
|Jackson Martínez 16'||Godín 58'|
|UEFA Champions League|
|Estadio do Dragão|
|01 October 2013|
|Lucho González (68')|
|Raúl García (80')|
|Cristian Rodríguez (45')|