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Irrepressible Porto leave Spartak in a spin

FC Spartak Moskva 2-5 FC Porto (agg: 3-10)
Falcao was among the scorers as Porto hit Spartak for five again to seal the highest winning margin in a UEFA Cup or UEFA Europa League quarter-final.

Irrepressible Porto leave Spartak in a spin
Irrepressible Porto leave Spartak in a spin ©UEFA.com

FC Porto eased into the UEFA Europa League semi-finals after scoring five against FC Spartak Moskva for the second week running.

Three goals in a nine-minute spell either side of the break from Cristian Rodríguez, Fredy Guarín and Falcao put the icing on the cake for the Portuguese champions, who effectively ended the tie as a contest through Hulk's 28th-minute opener.

Second-half strikes from Artem Dzyuba and Ari were little consolation for Spartak, who were condemned to their joint heaviest home defeat in Europe when Rúben Micael rifled in late on. The emphatic aggregate victory is the highest winning margin in a UEFA Cup or UEFA Europa League quarter-final. Porto's reward is a tie with Villarreal CF on 28 April and 5 May.

Despite needing to score four times to have any hope of progress, Spartak made a subdued start and any faint comeback hopes were shattered when Hulk shrugged off Evgeni Makeev, evaded Marek Suchý's last-ditch challenge and raced clear to fire beyond Andriy Dykan.

The visitors doubled their lead with the last kick of the first period. Guilty of lax defending in the away leg, Spartak showed they had failed to heed those lessons as Cristian Rodríguez headed past Dykan at the near post. It was to get worse for Spartak.

A couple of minutes after the restart, Falcao sprung the offside trap and forced a save from Dykan. He could only parry as far as the Colombian, however, who pulled the ball back for Guarín to fire into the far corner. It was his second goal in as many matches at the Luzhniki Stadion following his effort against PFC CSKA Moskva in the previous round.

Dzyuba finally gave the home fans something to cheer on 52 minutes, showing exceptional skill to nutmeg Nicolás Otamendi before delivering a deft feint to outfox Rolando and finish confidently past Helton. The muted celebrations were short-lived, however, as Porto hit back immediately.

Once again the hosts were guilty of poor marking at a corner as Falcao scored his 11th UEFA Europa League goal of the season, heading in Rodríguez's flick-on. Ari pulled a goal back with 18 minutes remaining but Porto, and Rúben Micael, had the last word. The only sour note for the Dragons was a shoulder injury sustained by Fucile in the first half.