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Thursday, January 27, 2005 

Benfica 3 - 3 Sporting (7-6 on gp) - Portuguese Cup

SL Benfica reached the quarter-finals of the Portuguese Cup by defeating Sporting Clube de Portugal 7-6 in a penalty shoot-out following a 3-3 draw after extra time.

Thrilling opening
Benfica could have hardly started the match in better fashion, taking the lead after only three minutes through Brazilian winger Geovanni. The visitors were level within eleven minutes, however, Hugo Viana equalising with a fine free-kick.

Quick replies
Just two minutes later Sporting were in front as Liedson received a pass between the Benfica central defenders, beat the offside trap and shot beyond goalkeeper Quim from the edge of the penalty area. Again the lead was short-lived, however, Geovanni quickly levelling following another free-kick.

Red card
There was also plenty of action in the second half, Fábio Rochemback testing Quim's reflexes with a fierce free-kick while Geovanni and Nuno Gomes went close for Benfica. With the sides locked together at 2-2 after 90 minutes, the match went into extra time, and Sporting were reduced to ten men in the 102nd minute when Hugo Viana was sent off for violent conduct.

Shoot-out drama
Despite the numerical disadvantage, the visitors regained the lead four minutes into the second half of extra time, left-back Paíto scoring after a fine solo run, but again Benfica responded, captain Simão Sabrosa striking a long-range equaliser with four minutes remaining to take the match to penalties. Sporting substitute Miguel Garcia was the only player to fail in the shoot-out, his penalty hitting the crossbar to take Benfica through.

Benfica – Quim; João Pereira, Luisão, Ricardo Rocha (30’ Alcides) e Dos Santos; Petit, Manuel Fernandes e Bruno Aguiar (82’ Fyssas); Simão (cap.), Geovanni (90’ Carlitos); Nuno Gomes.

Sporting – Tiago, Rogério (81’ Miguel Garcia), Polga, Enakarhire e Paíto; Custódio (36’ João Moutinho), Rochemback e Hugo Viana; Pedro Barbosa (cap.) (115’ Tello), Sá Pinto e Liedson.

Goals: Geovanni (3’), Hugo Viana (14’), Liedson (16’), Geovanni (22’), Paíto (109’) e Simão (117’).

Source: Uefa.com, slbenfica.pt

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