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Falcao fires Atlético to Super Cup glory

Published: Friday 31 August 2012, 22.35CET
Chelsea FC 1-4 Club Atlético de Madrid
Falcao proved the star turn in the final UEFA Super Cup to be played in Monaco as his first-half hat-trick shot down the European champions.
by Kevin Ashby
from Stade Louis II

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Published: Friday 31 August 2012, 22.35CET

Falcao fires Atlético to Super Cup glory

Chelsea FC 1-4 Club Atlético de Madrid
Falcao proved the star turn in the final UEFA Super Cup to be played in Monaco as his first-half hat-trick shot down the European champions.

Falcao's second hat-trick in five days capped a wonderful performance from Club Atlético de Madrid as they defeated Chelsea FC in Monaco to claim their second UEFA Super Cup.

"Extraordinary" was how Diego Simeone described the Colombian's display against Athletic Club on Monday and the Atlético coach could take his pick of superlatives to describe the striker's blistering first-half treble as Falcao followed up measured finishes in the sixth and 19th minutes with another just before half-time.

If the game was not over then, the Mattress Makers put Chelsea to bed on the hour as Miranda clipped the fourth over Petr Čech from close range. Gary Cahill (75) poked in what proved to be the final UEFA Super Cup goal to be scored at Stade Louis II – the match will be played in Prague, Cardiff and Tbilisi in the next three years – 15 years after the Blues became the first club to lift the trophy here.

Atlético swarmed over the European champions from the start and could have taken the lead in the fourth minute as Falcao powered a shot against the bar after beating Ashley Cole at the far post to Filipe Luis's whipped cross from the left.

The legion of red-and-white-clad fans did not have to wait long for the opener, though, as the No9 gave Adrián López's pass through the heart of the Chelsea defence the finish it deserved – curling the ball from the corner of the area over Petr Čech's outstretched arm and in off the post despite David Luiz's despairing dive.

Atlético attacked at pace, at will and with no little skill, often finding themselves with a man over. Čech repelled a Gabi effort in the 20th minute and then watched an Arda Turan header fizz wide before being beaten again. Having combined neatly with Adrián to create space, Koke deceived Luiz when slipping in Falcao, who momentarily looked up, paused and flighted the ball into the top corner.

Roberto Di Matteo could only look on forlornly from the touchline as the Spanish side swept past him in numbers. Čech denied Gabi once more, while only the woodwork prevented Falcao from securing the match ball in the 35th minute as he reacted first to get a head to Adrián's fluffed shot.

Another ten minutes mattered little. Arda Turan, effervescent throughout, ran unopposed down the right as he waited for Falcao to do likewise on the opposite flank. The Turkish international then cut inside and picked out his team-mate, who took out Ramires with his first touch and slotted the ball under Čech with his second.

The second half lacked the fireworks of the first, yet did feature another fine goal from Miranda who showed that it is not only Falcao who has a line in tidy finishes, while Luiz inadvertently sliced an Emre Belözoğlu cross against his own post late on. Cahill's consolation for Chelsea took little of the gloss off Falcao's night or Atlético's fourth European title in two years as they achieved a second UEFA Europa League-UEFA Super Cup double.

Last updated: 30/01/13 6.57CET

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