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Pereira determined to preserve Porto record

Published: Monday 12 September 2011, 21.45CET
Coach Vítor Pereira realises a long-held dream when FC Porto host FC Shakhtar Donetsk and his aim is to ensure their unbeaten record in opening-day home games stays intact.
by Carlos Santos
from Porto
Pereira determined to preserve Porto record
Vítor Pereira oversees training before Porto's opening Group G fixture ©Getty Images

Tournament statistics

PortoShakhtar Donetsk

Goals scored7
 
6
Attempts on target42
 
34
Attempts off target54
 
38
Corners42
 
42
Offsides3
 
9
Fouls committed101
 
96
Yellow cards19
 
17
Red cards1
 
2
 
Published: Monday 12 September 2011, 21.45CET

Pereira determined to preserve Porto record

Coach Vítor Pereira realises a long-held dream when FC Porto host FC Shakhtar Donetsk and his aim is to ensure their unbeaten record in opening-day home games stays intact.

Vítor Pereira realises a long-held UEFA Champions League dream when he leads FC Porto into their Group G fixture with FC Shakhtar Donetsk on Tuesday and he has promised to keep up their proud record of never having lost an opening group match at home.

Porto
Coach Vítor Pereira
If we have never lost the first match of the Champions League, of course we're not losing one now! But we are playing Shakhtar, a great club with many good players, very good Brazilian players, but we have what it takes to counter their quality. Coaching in the Champions League is the dream of every coach. I have heard the Champions League anthem many times, seen many matches in the stands, but now I'm here, and I knew I would get here. Shakhtar might not have the history of other big clubs in this competition, but everyone in football knows they are one of the best teams in Europe. I'm expecting a great atmosphere – it's to experience these moments of pressure that I've worked my whole life for.

Weekend result
Friday: Porto 3-0 Vitória SC
(Moutinho 53, James Rodríguez 75, Belluschi 88)
Helton; Fucile, Maicon, Rolando, Alvaro Pereira; Souza (Moutinho 46), Defour, Belluschi; Cristian Rodríguez (Djalma 80), James Rodríguez, Kléber (Hulk 71)

• Porto stretched their unbeaten Liga run to 43 games (39 wins, four draws), dating back to 28 February 2010 and a 3-0 defeat at Sporting Clube de Portugal, having also beaten UD Leiria 5-2 last Wednesday.

Team news
Pereira said: "Rolando, [Fredy] Guarín [both suspended] and Álvaro [Pereira, with a leg injury] will be out, they're important players, but we have others that can replace them." Emídio Rafael, who has a broken leg, has been left out of the group stage squad.

Shakhtar
Coach Mircea Lucescu

The main objective is to get through to the next phase, because at the moment my team are not ready to win the Champions League. The losses of Guarín and Rolando are not a problem for Porto because they have other good players to replace them. It's obvious that Hulk is a world star, up there with the best, but he's not the only one. Porto's midfield is the most important part of their team, it's there that all the play starts. Their style of play is very smooth and they're strong all over the pitch. So we'll meet a very good team – they are very young but their quality is immense and playing them at their ground is very difficult.

Weekend result
Friday: Shakhtar 5-1 FC Volyn Lutsk
(Luiz Adriano 18 37, Eduardo 26, Jadson 34, Douglas Costa 84; Maicon 52)
Rybka; Kobin, Rakitskiy, Chygrynskiy, Raţ; Mkhitaryan, Fernandinho (Gai 81), Eduardo (Teixeira 68), Jadson, Dentinho (Douglas Costa 61); Luiz Adriano

Team news
Olexandr Kucher, Vyacheslav Shevchuk and Darijo Srna were all rested on Friday after returning from international duty with knocks but are expected to be available. Striker Yevhen Seleznyov was also omitted after suffering a minor head injury in a car accident on Thursday but has also been passed fit.

Match fact
Porto, playing their 300th European fixture on Tuesday, have reached the group stage of the two major UEFA competitions 16 times and have yet to lose a matchday one game at home, recording three wins and five draws. Their overall record in group stage openers is W6 D7 L3.

Last updated: 13/09/11 10.13CET

http://www.uefa.com/uefachampionsleague/season=2012/matches/round=2000263/match=2007573/prematch/preview/index.html#porto+defend+home

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