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Football

Impressive Porto power to victory


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Dmitri Alenichev fires home Porto's third goal against Monaco

GELSENKIRCHEN, Germany -- Porto eased to an emphatic 3-0 victory over Monaco in the Champions League final to win the European Cup for the second time in their history.

Goals from Carlos Alberto, Deco Souza and substitute Dmitri Alenichev secured victory for the Portuguese champions, who became only the second team to win the UEFA Cup and European Cup in successive seasons after Liverpool in 1976 and 1977.

Brazilian striker Carlos Alberto scored the first goal with an opportunist finish six minutes before halftime and Deco and Alenichev struck twice on the counter-attack within four minutes late in the second half.

Monaco never recovered from an early injury to their captain and playmaker Ludovic Giuly, who was substituted after just 23 minutes.

And their task became even harder when some South American magic from Carlos Alberto put Porto ahead.

He was the first to react to a ball that took a deflection off a defender, curling home a superbly-taken volley which gave goalkeeper Flavio Roma no chance, amaking him the third youngest scorer in the final's history after Patrick Kluivert in 1995 and Brian Kidd in 1968.

Monaco came out for the second half searching for an equaliser and created more chances in the first 10 minutes after the break than they had done throughout the first half.

But with Nuno Valente, Ricardo Carvalho, Jorge Costa and Paulo Ferreira playing superbly at the back, they could find no way through.

The one time Monaco did look like scoring, they allowed Porto to regain possession and moments later the ball was in the back of the French side's net.

Porto's counter-attack ended with Deco trading passes with Alenichev before scoring the decisive second goal after 71 minutes.

Four minutes later Alenichev took advantage of another defensive error to blast home the third goal that brought the European Cup back to Porto for the first time since 1987.

Porto's first European Cup victory came when they beat Bayern Munich 2-1 in the final in Vienna.


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