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Benfica's Salvio and Rodrigo finish AZ off

Published: Thursday 10 April 2014, 23.10CET
SL Benfica 2-0 AZ Alkmaar (agg: 3-0)
Rodrigo came up with two back-post finishes from breathtaking Eduardo Salvio crosses to steer the Eagles into the semis with minimal fuss.
by José Nuno Pimentel
from Estadio do Sport Lisboa e Benfica
Benfica's Salvio and Rodrigo finish AZ off
Rodrigo celebrates making his mark against AZ ©AFP/Getty Images
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Published: Thursday 10 April 2014, 23.10CET

Benfica's Salvio and Rodrigo finish AZ off

SL Benfica 2-0 AZ Alkmaar (agg: 3-0)
Rodrigo came up with two back-post finishes from breathtaking Eduardo Salvio crosses to steer the Eagles into the semis with minimal fuss.

Rodrigo scored a goal in each half, set up both times by brilliant Eduardo Salvio balls, as SL Benfica made it past AZ Alkmaar to the UEFA Europa League semi-finals in some comfort.

A serious injury to right-back Sílvio got Benfica off to a miserable start, but with AZ offering little meaningful resistance, Rodrigo met a Salvio cross from the right on 39 minutes to put last season's beaten UEFA Europa League finalists in front. The 19-year-old forward then came up with a tidy far-post finish on 71 minutes as Salvio once more summoned up a sensational delivery.

Shaken after Sílvio's clash with team-mate Luisão inside the first minute caused the defender to be taken off on a stretcher, Benfica soon recovered, Óscar Cardozo's curling left-footed effort from just outside the box demanding a fine diving stop from Esteban. The AZ goalkeeper showed his class again, repelling Cardozo's close-range shot following good work from Rodrigo.

Salvio and Cardozo missed further opportunities as Jorge Jesus's team turned the screw, before Salvio finally carved AZ open, rampaging down the right and sending in a superb ball which Rodrigo converted at the far post, leaving Esteban with no chance. The best AZ had to offer in return before the break were blocked attempts from Steven Berghuis and Roy Beerens.

Things did not improve much for Dick Advocaat's men after the interval; Beerens tried his luck, and Artur had to make a low save from Mattias Johansson's strike from the edge of the area, but Benfica killed off any hope of a revival on 71 minutes. Salvio once more did splendid work on the right, then swung a centre across the face of goal for Rodrigo to plant low into the net.

The only disappointment for Salvio was that he failed to get on the scoresheet himself; the 23-year-old winger certainly had the opportunity to do so, Esteban blocking an effort from 'Mr Europa League' as he bore down on goal in the closing stages.

Last updated: 12/04/14

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http://www.uefa.com/uefaeuropaleague/season=2014/matches/round=2000472/match=2012672/postmatch/report/index.html#rodrigo+finishes+az

Lineups

benfica

Benfica

az

AZ

1
ArturArtur (GK)
1
EstebanEsteban (GK)
4
LuisãoLuisão (C)
2
JohanssonMattias Johansson
5
FejsaLjubomir Fejsa
Substitution64
4
ViergeverNick Viergever (C)
7
Óscar CardozoÓscar Cardozo
8
GudeljNemanja Gudelj
8
SulejmaniMiralem Sulejmani
Substitution70
12
ElmViktor Elm
16
SiqueiraGuilherme Siqueira
20
JóhannssonAron Jóhannsson
18
SalvioEduardo Salvio
Yellow Card31
22
BerghuisSteven Berghuis
Yellow Card23
Substitution77
19
RodrigoRodrigo
Goal39
Goal71
23
BeerensRoy Beerens
Substitution77
24
GarayEzequiel Garay
24
GouweleeuwJeffrey Gouweleeuw
28
SílvioSílvio
Substitution4
26
OrtizCelso Ortiz
Substitution79
30
André GomesAndré Gomes
Yellow Card73
29
WuytensJan Wuytens

Substitutes

13
Paulo LopesPaulo Lopes (GK)
16
De WinterYves De Winter (GK)
10
DjuričićFilip Djuričić
5
GorterDonny Gorter
11
LimaLima
6
ReijnenEtienne Reijnen
33
JardelJardel
7
GudmundssonJohann Gudmundsson
Substitution77
34
André AlmeidaAndré Almeida
Substitution4
19
HenriksenMarkus Henriksen
Substitution79
35
PérezEnzo Pérez
Substitution64
33
HayeThom Haye
Substitution77
50
L. MarkovićLazar Marković
Substitution70
44
AvdicDenni Avdic

Coach

Jorge Jesus (POR) Dick Advocaat (NED)

Referee

Pavel Královec (CZE)

Assistant referees

Roman Slyško (SVK), Martin Wilczek (CZE)

Fourth official

Antonin Kordula (CZE)

Additional assistant referees

Radek Příhoda (CZE), Michal Paták (CZE)

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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