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Watt shines, lights out and wet fans

Published: Friday 9 November 2012, 9.55CET
Tony Watt helped Celtic FC to a stunning win, Manchester United FC saw the light at SC Braga and some Liverpool FC fans came in for a soaking. UEFA.com mulls over the last few days.

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Published: Friday 9 November 2012, 9.55CET

Watt shines, lights out and wet fans

Tony Watt helped Celtic FC to a stunning win, Manchester United FC saw the light at SC Braga and some Liverpool FC fans came in for a soaking. UEFA.com mulls over the last few days.

Team: Celtic FC
"It is one of the proudest nights of my career – it was a monumental effort," said manager Neil Lennon after Celtic won 2-1 against FC Barcelona in UEFA Champions League Group G. Already a special day for Celtic, who were celebrating their 125th anniversary, goals from Victor Wanyama and 18-year-old European debutant Tony Watt supplied the icing on the birthday cake – along with a helping hand from goalkeeper Fraser Forster, since dubbed 'La Gran Muralla' (The Great Wall) by the Spanish press.

The sight of Celtic fan Rod Stewart breaking down in tears provided an iconic image to match a memorable Wednesday night in Glasgow, eclipsing the events of Thursday in central Portugal. There, in UEFA Europa League Group B, A. Académica de Coimbra recorded their first European victory since 1969, in the process ending Club Atlético de Madrid's continental record run of 16 straight wins in UEFA competition. The reaction of their own celebrity supporter, poet and politician Manuel Alegre, is unknown.

Goal: Taison (FC Metalist Kharkiv)
Who can ever forget Marco van Basten's goal in the 1988 UEFA European Championship final? Well, Taison's opening effort for Metalist against Rosenborg BK in UEFA Europa League Group K on Thursday was arguably every bit as good. Fininho's cross looked harmless enough until Taison – the Ukrainian hosts' 24-year-old Brazilian forward – showed all the poise, technique and precision of Van Basten to unleash a fearsome first-time volley into the opposite corner.

Rosenborg winger Bořek Dočkal said: "I've never seen such an amazing goal live. It was goal of the year, maybe. Goal of the century, I don't know. It was so amazing."

Player: Edinson Cavani (SSC Napoli)
Heading for their first European home defeat since December 1994, Napoli needed rescuing against FC Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk in UEFA Europa League Group F. They may have been 2-1 down with 13 minutes left, but then along came Cavani with three late goals – a free-kick and a volley included – to add to his early opener and bail out his side. In so doing, the Uruguayan international followed in the footsteps of Falcao to become just the second player to score four times in a UEFA Europa League fixture.

The 25-year-old attacker's only disappointment was that his family were not there to witness his Stadio San Paolo heroics. "They could not be here today because we are waiting for a second son," he said.

Quote: Danny Welbeck (Manchester United FC)
"We have a great chef. He does dishes like sweet chilli pasta with chicken, but he also throws in things like fish fingers which my mum won't cook any more. She says I'm too old for them, but I'm not the only footballer who loves them because if you don't get to the canteen fast enough, they've all gone."
Striker Danny Welbeck reveals the special diet that gives Manchester United's players an extra metre of pace at their Carrington training ground.

Number: 4
Even when he does not score, he still makes the headlines. After ten goals in as many Ligue 1 outings, Zlatan Ibrahimović turned his hand to the role of provider for Paris Saint-Germain FC. The Sweden forward delivered the final pass that led to all four of PSG's goals in Tuesday's 4-0 home win against GNK Dinamo Zagreb in UEFA Champions League Group A, with opposition midfielder Josip Pivarić in no doubt about where the match was won and lost, saying: "He destroyed us with his assists." The reaction was even more stirring in the PSG camp, with Blaise Matuidi adding: "He makes everyone else want to raise their game."

Blackout: SC Braga v Man. United
People often talk about seeing the light and gaining clarity after a spell in the dark – and for Manchester United in UEFA Champions League Group H on Wednesday, that was true in every sense. For 67 minutes they toiled at SC Braga, and were trailing 1-0 when the floodlights went out after a power cut.

A quarter of an hour later, when they came back on, United emerged looking like a different team; they were electric, running out 3-1 winners. Striker Wayne Rooney easily identified the moment that sparked their improvement, telling UEFA.com: "After the lights came back, I think we played the better football."

Shower: Liverpool FC fans
Newcastle United FC defender Fabricio Coloccini was sent off against Liverpool on Sunday but he was far from the first to have an early bath during the 1-1 Premier League draw at Anfield: during half-time an errant sprinkler rose from the touchline and soaked the first 20 rows of the Paddock stand.

Its effect was more befitting a water cannon as the home supporters sought refuge from the torrent, which lasted 30 seconds. Only one fan remained, arms spread wide incredulously – almost basking as if on a beach. Perhaps he thought he was. Perhaps, beneath his thick jacket, he was wearing this.

Understudy: Claudio Pizarro (FC Bayern München)
Filling in for the absent Mario Gomez and Mario Mandžukić, Pizarro struck a 16-minute hat-trick against LOSC Lille in Group F on Wednesday. The Peruvian international forward's treble inspired Bayern to an emphatic 6-1 victory and was the third-fastest in UEFA Champions League history. "It gives me a lot of confidence and I hope I can score goals again in the next match," said Pizarro, 34. Galatasaray AŞ striker Burak Yılmaz also deserves an honourable mention here after his hat-trick at CFR 1907 Cluj in Group H on the same night.

Miserly Montenegrin: Mileta Radulović
FK Grbalj goalkeeper Radulović broke a Montenegrin First League record last weekend as he kept a ninth successive clean sheet. Radulović has now held firm for 835 minutes, 20 more than the previous landmark set by then FK Mogren custodian Nemanja Popović in 2008/09. Morever, taking cup matches into account, he has not had to pick the ball out of his net in more than 1,000 minutes, since a 1-0 defeat at FK Rudar Pljevlja on 25 August. "This record is not just a personal success," said the 31-year-old. "This is actually a big success for the club, coaches and players. It is a result of the unity in the team."

Last updated: 04/12/13 19.05CET

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