Sevilla FC crowned an outstanding season as Frédéric Kanouté’s first-half strike proved enough to earn the UEFA Cup winners a 1-0 win over Getafe CF on Saturday night.
Kanouté grabbed the winner in a hard-fought contest at the Santiago Bernabéu when he raced clear from just inside the Getafe half and stroked the ball past goalkeeper Luis García into the net after eleven minutes. But the evening ended on a low note for the Mali striker when he was sent off for retaliating after being fouled in the dying minutes of the game. For his team, however, it was a fitting end to a brilliant campaign that began with victory over FC Barcelona in the UEFA Super Cup and continued with a successful defence of the UEFA Cup against fellow Spaniards RCD Espanyol last month.
"I can't find the words to explain a season like this," said Sevilla captain Javi Navarro. "It's going to take time for all of this to sink in. We've made a huge effort and now we've been rewarded for it." Getafe coach Bernd Schuster won six Copa del Rey trophies as a player but his luck deserted him this time around as the first-time finalists fought tooth and nail throughout but lacked the firepower to break down Sevilla’s obdurate defence. There was some consolation for the modest Madrid side, however, because they will play in the UEFA Cup next season due to Sevilla qualifying for the 2007/08 UEFA Champions League.
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