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Porto hold off valiant Villarreal to reach final

Published: Thursday 5 May 2011, 23.10CET
Villarreal CF 3-2 FC Porto (agg: 4-7)
The visitors will meet Portuguese rivals SC Braga in the final, their first-leg lead proving too great for Villarreal on a record-breaking night for Falcao.
by Graham Hunter
from El Madrigal

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Match statistics

VillarrealPorto

Goals scored3
 
2
Attempts on target11
 
5
Attempts off target5
 
3
Corners5
 
2
Offsides5
 
1
Fouls committed6
 
15
Yellow cards2
 
4
Red cards0
 
0

Standings

 
Published: Thursday 5 May 2011, 23.10CET

Porto hold off valiant Villarreal to reach final

Villarreal CF 3-2 FC Porto (agg: 4-7)
The visitors will meet Portuguese rivals SC Braga in the final, their first-leg lead proving too great for Villarreal on a record-breaking night for Falcao.

FC Porto are through to the 2010/11 UEFA Europa League final after a contest high on commitment and quality, their 5-1 first-leg advantage proving insurmountable for Villarreal CF – despite the Spanish side's best efforts.

Falcao produced a record 16th goal of the competition this season just after half-time but home hope was extinguished just before it when Hulk's shot deflected in off Mateo Musacchio, cancelling out Cani's 17th-minute opener. Joan Capdevila's volley restored pride and Giuseppe Rossi's penalty ten minutes from time won it for Villarreal on the night. It was Porto who were celebrating at the end, however, a 7-4 aggregate win setting up a meeting with SC Braga in Dublin on 18 May.

The narrative followed so many of those glorious goal chases as Villarreal came out with their tails up, full of verve and belief. Cani busied Helton after some slick build-up and Rossi just failed to connect with Marco Ruben's right-wing cross with the goal gaping. Two good chances to rock Porto had gone begging – but doubt had crept in.

The Portuguese titleholders did not have answers and a new question was posed when Cani broke the deadlock, completing a move his ferocious pursuit of the ball started. He freed Marco Ruben who, despite a maladroit first touch, squared for Cani to muscle in front of João Moutinho – 1-0.

One mark of champions is how they react and Porto's response was peerless. They immediately gained more crispness, authority and intention to score. Rossi still carried threat, side-footing into the wrong side of the net, but it was clear Villarreal's improvised defensive system, with Bruno Soriano playing centre-back for the first time and Javíer Matilla in midfield, was creaking.

Before the break Matilla was exposed. Hulk used power and pace to leave the 22-year-old in his wake and his left-foot shot was going wide when it took a wicked deflection off Musacchio, spiralling beyond Diego López's reach. Three minutes later Hulk repeated the lesson to Matilla and only the goalkeeper's save denied Porto the lead.

It was a temporary reprieve. Three minutes after the restart, Fredy Guarín rampaged down the left and his cross was heaven sent for Falcao, whose control and clip home were exquisite. Nilmar missed two clear chances for Villarreal and Guarín cracked a free-kick against the bar as the game really opened up.

Capdevila restored parity after Cani's free-kick on 75 minutes and when Marco Ruben was tripped by Nicolás Otamendi, Rossi converted for his 11th goal of the competition to make it 3-2. Pride restored, but it is Porto who go on.

Last updated: 26/09/14 5.39CET

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http://www.uefa.com/uefaeuropaleague/season=2011/matches/round=2000132/match=2007741/postmatch/report/index.html#porto+hold+valiant+villarreal

Lineups

villarreal

Villarreal

porto

Porto

13
Diego LópezDiego López (GK)
1
HeltonHelton (GK) (C)
4
MusacchioMateo Musacchio
Goal39
5
Álvaro PereiraÁlvaro Pereira
7
NilmarNilmar
Substitution67
6
GuarínFredy Guarín
8
Santi CazorlaSanti Cazorla (C)
Substitution57
8
João MoutinhoJoão Moutinho
Substitution52
9
Marco RubenMarco Ruben
9
FalcaoRadamel Falcao
Yellow Card26
Goal48
10
CaniCani
Goal17
10
Cristian RodríguezCristian Rodríguez
Substitution32
11
CapdevilaJoan Capdevila
Goal75
12
HulkHulk
17
MatillaJavier Matilla
Substitution57
14
RolandoRolando
21
Bruno SorianoBruno Soriano
Yellow Card54
21
SăpunaruCristian Săpunaru
Yellow Card60
22
RossiGiuseppe Rossi
Goal80
25
FernandoFernando
Substitution61
27
Mario GasparMario Gaspar
30
OtamendiNicolás Otamendi
Yellow Card79

Substitutes

25
Juan CarlosJuan Carlos (GK)
24
BetoBeto (GK)
3
OriolJoan Oriol
4
MaiconMaicon
5
MarchenaCarlos Marchena
Substitution57
16
SerenoSereno
19
SennaMarcos Senna
Substitution67
18
WalterWalter
20
Borja ValeroBorja Valero
19
James RodríguezJames Rodríguez
Substitution32
24
CicinhoCicinho
23
SouzaSouza
Substitution52
43
WakasoMubarak Wakaso
Substitution57
Yellow Card62
28
Rúben MicaelRúben Micael
Substitution61
Yellow Card74

Coach

Juan Carlos Garrido (ESP) André Villas-Boas (POR)

Referee

Gianluca Rocchi (ITA)

Assistant referees

Cristiano Copelli (ITA), Elenito Di Liberatore (ITA)

Fourth official

Daniele Orsato (ITA)

Additional assistant referees

Mauro Bergonzi (ITA), Andrea De Marco (ITA)

Legend:

  • GoalsGoals
  • Own goalOwn goal
  • PenaltiesPenalties
  • Missed PenaltiesMissed Penalties
  • reds_cardRed Cards
  • yellow_cardsYellow cards
  • yellow_red_cardsYellow/red card
  • SubstitutionSubstitution
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