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Striker Falcao praised his team-mates' work-rate after his late goal against Cypriot champions APOEL FC fired FC Porto into the knockout phase of the UEFA Champions League.
The visitors had been the more threatening of the two sides in Nicosia, but were denied on several occasions by APOEL goalkeeper Dionisios Chiotis until Falcao popped up with the winner with six minutes remaining. The 23-year-old striker has taken Portugal by storm since signing from CA River Plate in the summer. He has already scored seven times in the Liga and his second UEFA Champions League strike, after hitting Porto's first in their 2-0 win over Club Atlético de Madrid on Matchday 2, again proved pivotal. The Colombian, though, refused to take sole credit for the Portuguese titleholders' 1-0 victory.
"The team in general did a great job," he told uefa.com. "The team worked for the victory and that made it possible for me to play well. I feel composed and have a lot of confidence in my game and in the end the reward for our effort was the goal. It made me personally very happy and it secured my team's passage into the next round." Defender Rolando added that Porto knew they were in for a tough evening in the Cypriot capital, but that belief in their abilities saw them through. "It was a difficult match," he said. "We knew what the atmosphere would be like. We knew the quality of the opposition, but taking into consideration our own capabilities we were prepared and were able to fight for the win. We secured a difficult victory but a vital one. We made it into the next round and that was always our aim."
APOEL's defeat, coupled with Atlético's 2-2 draw with Chelsea FC in the night's other Group D match, saw Ivan Jovanović's side slip into last place in the section and defender Marios Elia conceded APOEL were second best at the GSP Stadium. "We are a bit disappointed because Porto scored in the last few minutes, but to be fair, Porto had all the chances to score much earlier. Unfortunately, we didn't manage to make it because of the pressure Porto put us under and as a result they scored and we lost." APOEL next host Atlético in a game which looks set to decide third place in the group and a place in the UEFA Europa League. "Our aim is now to win the next home match against Atlético," the Cypriot international defender said. "They managed to get another point which makes things more difficult for us."
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