Thursday, March 31, 2005 

Mourinho given two-match ban

The Chelsea FC manager José Mourinho has been handed a two-match touchline ban following today's investigation by the UEFA Control and Disciplinary Body into incidents connected with the UEFA Champions League first knockout round first leg against FC Barcelona in Spain on 23 February.

Mourinho was also fined 20,000 Swiss francs (€13,000). Assistant manager Steve Clarke and security official Les Miles were reprimanded for their involvement while Chelsea were fined CHF 75,000 (€48,400).

A UEFA statement said: "Having listened to evidence presented by the disciplinary inspector and by Chelsea FC, the Control and Disciplinary Body decided to impose a two-match suspension and a fine of CHF 20,000 on Chelsea FC manager José Mourinho. Chelsea FC were fined CHF 75,000. Les Miles and Steve Clarke were each reprimanded. The above decisions may be appealed against within three days of UEFA informing the club in writing of the reasoning.

"As far as the touchline ban is concerned, Article 70 para 2 of the UEFA Disciplinary Regulations states: 'A team manager/coach who is suspended from carrying out his function may follow the match for which he is suspended from the stands only. He is not allowed in the dressing room, tunnel or technical area before and during the match nor is he allowed to get in contact with his team.'"

UEFA will now give written grounds to Chelsea for its decision, after which the English club will have three days in which to lodge any appeal with UEFA. The European body said there was a possibility that Mourinho could still be on the bench for next week's Champions League quarter-final first leg against FC Bayern München.

Any appeal has no delaying effect on the decisions taken today. However, the club may request a delaying effect, pending an appeal, which would be reviewed by UEFA before the match.


Monday, March 21, 2005 

Ajax 0 - 4 PSV

Ajax crashed to their biggest defeat ever against an experienced PSV side in the Amsterdam ArenA on Sunday afternoon. PSV, who have frequently been successful in the Arena, strolled to an emphatic 0-4 win over Ajax.

Mark van Bommel was the star of the afternoon. The PSV captain netted as many as three goals, one of which was from the spot.

PSV controlled the game completely and dominated proceedings in midfield. Ajax were professionally kept at bay, while the Eindhoven side patiently waited for their own chances. PSV were on top after some thirty minutes, when André Ooijer delivered the perfect cross for Phillip Cocu to superbly head home; 0-1. Then Mark van Bommel got his name on the score sheet. In first half injury time he coolly slotted home, after he had been found by Vennegoor of Hesselink. Van Bommel scored a double in the second period. First he clinically converted a penalty. And then Jefferson Farfán turned provider for the third Van Bommel goal.

Goals: 24' Cocu; 45´, 54´, 59´ Van Bommel

Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. PSV 26 67
2. AZ 25 60
3. Ajax 25 53
4. Feyenoord 25 50
5. Vitesse 26 43



V. Setúbel 0 - 2 Benfica

With FC Porto and Sporting Clube de Portugal playing on Monday, SL Benfica capitalised to extend their lead at the Portuguese SuperLiga summit to six points with a 2-0 win at Vitória FC, while Boavista FC and SC Braga were both held.

Veríssimo dismissal
Giovanni Trapattoni's side were never likely to struggle against a team seeking their first victory in eight matches and the task became easier on 27 minutes when Setúbal were reduced to ten men following Nélson Veríssimo's dismissal. Benfica were ahead by half-time, when Manuel Fernandes struck a powerful shot from long range.

Petit concern
Brazilian striker Geovanni effectively sealed the win with a second from a deflected shot just after the hour. However, the victory was tempered by the late substitution of midfield player Petit with suspected broken ribs. The win extends their lead to six points after Boavista and Braga were both forced to come from behind to salvage 1-1 draws.

V. Setúbal: Paulo Ribeiro; Auri, Veríssimo, Hugo Alcântara e Manuel José; Sandro, Ricardo Chaves e Bruno Ribeiro; Jorginho; Meyong e Bruno Moraes

Benfica: Quim; Miguel, Luisão, Ricardo Rocha e Manuel dos Santos; Petit e Manuel Fernandes; Geovanni, Nuno Assis e Simão; Azar Karadas

Goals: Manuel Fernandes (0-1); Geovanni 63´(0-2)

Portuguese SuperLiga

Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. Benfica 26 51
2. Braga 26 45
3. Boavista 26 45
4. Porto 25 45
5. Sporting 25 42


Hamburg 2 - 3 Dortmund

HSV lost their first home game in five in round 26 in front of a sell out crowd in the AOL Arena, as they deservedly lost 2-3 agaianst Borussia Dortmund. The visitors lead after ten minutes through a Rosicky goal, before Collin Benjamin headed his side’s equaliser after 30 minutes. A world class free kick by Beinlich put the home side in front on 57 minutes, but goals by first Ricken (61.), and then Ewerthon 3 minutes from time, gave the visitors a deserved win.

Early setback for HSV
It was HSV who fired the first warning shot on an awful playing surface in front of a sell out crowd in the AOL Arena, as Beinlich fed Lauth who was denied by Weidenfeller in the Dortmund goal. After 10 minutes, the visitors tried to make their mark on the game and they did just that, firing in two shots from distance, both of which hit Daniel van Buyten where it hurts. Rosciky picked up the rebound from the second effort and blasted the ball into the far corner from the edge of the HSV penalty area.

Weidenfeller in top form
There were two main reasons for the visiting side not being able to extend their lead at first. Firstly, their man-mountain Czech-born striker Jan Koller was forced to leave the pitch after only 17 minutes due to a pulled hamstring. The other reason was that HSV finally decided to attack them. Dortmund’s keeper Weidenfeller played a blinder in Hamburg, as he brilliantly stopped what would have been an own goal by Metzelder and then a sitter from to metres out by Boulahrouz.

HSV deservedly draw level
Weidenfeller was also involved in Collin Benjamin’s deserved 30th minute equaliser. Benjamin got his head to a Beinlich corner and Weidenfeller saved it, but not before the ball had crossed the goal line. On 42 minutes Lars Ricken hit the outside netting after HSV had given away possession. After 50 minutes Dortmund also lost their play maker Rosicky who was obviously still suffering the after effects of a bout of flu which had plagued him during the week.

Dream strike by Paule Beinlich
On 57 minutes HSV won a free kick some 23 metres out from goal. Up stepped Paule Beinlich to strike a perfect free kick which flew just inside the right hand post with Weidenfeller nowhere. To their credit, the visitors never let themselves be rattled by that goal, and they equalised four minutes later as Klingbeil deflected a Ricken free kick past his own keeper.

Borussia on top
HSV appeared to be void of ideas in midfield and up front and the visitors began to show why they haven’t lost in Hamburg for seven years. Four minutes from time, a long distance effort by Klingbeil was tipped over by the Borussia keeper. A minute later, Ewerthon, who had replaced Koller, scored what turned out to be a deserved winner as Smolarek’s cross flew through the HSV box where the Brazilian was waiting to score from close range. HSV has now dropped down to 7th place in the Bundesliga table.

HSV: Wächter - Benjamin, van Buyten, Boulahrouz, Klingbeil - Wicky (58.Mahdavikia), Jarolim, Beinlich, Barbarez - Lauth (80.Moreira), Takahara (72.Mpenza)

Borussia Dortmund: Weidenfeller - Demel, Brzenska, Metzelder, Dede - Kehl, Kringe, Ricken, Rosicky (50.Kruska) - Koller (17.Ewerthon), Smolarek (90.Bergdölmo)

Goals: 0:1 Rosicky (10.), 1:1 Benjamin (30.), 2:1 Beinlich (57.), 2:2 Ricken (61.), 2:3 Ewerthon (87.)


Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. Bayern 26 53
2. Schalke 26 53
3. Stuttgart 26 48
4. Bremen 26 47
5. Hertha 26 44
7. Hamburg 26 43

Friday, March 18, 2005 

Zaragoza 2 - 2 Austria Wien (Uefa Cup)

FK Austria Wien squeezed into the UEFA Cup quarter-finals on away goals after drawing 2-2 with Real Zaragoza, despite a spirited comeback by the Spanish side at La Romareda.

Held on
Two first-half goals paved the way for Lars Sondergaard's team to progress, Saša Papac and Tosin Dosunmu stunning the home crowd with strikes within the first ten minutes. Even the dismissal of their goalkeeper Joseph Didulica after 30 minutes could not halt Austria's progress, although they had to survive some nervy final moments after first David Villa and then Luciano Galletti had hauled Zaragoza level.

Set-piece opener
Zaragoza had hoped to protect the 1-1 score they had achieved in Vienna, but despite enjoying a bright start, were trailing as early as the fifth minute. Luis García failed to clear Libor Sionko's free-kick from the left-wing and Papac pounced on the loose ball to fire through the goalkeeper's legs.

Zaragoza numbed
That unexpected start left the home side bewildered, and they were punished from an almost identical set-play just five minutes later. Once again Sionko sent over a free-kick into the penalty area, Dosunmu given carte blanche to score Austria's second of the evening.

Spanish reposte
Zaragoza responded quickly, Galletti coming close to reducing the deficit moments later, but with only Didulica to beat he contrived to shoot wide. Soon after Mikael Antonsson almost pinched a third for Austria, his long-range effort skimming the top of the crossbar.

Direct red
The visitors' glorious night turned sour on the half-hour mark, when they were reduced to ten men. Didulica was ordered from the field for hauling down Sávio Bortolini, and with the numerical advantage, Zaragoza laid siege on the Austria goal. Sávio and Villa both tried in vain, seeing their efforts before half-time saved by stand-in goalkeeper Szabolcs Safar.

Muñoz pep talk
Some strong words from coach Víctor Muñoz seemed to spur Zaragoza in the second half, and his inspiration paid off in the 58th minute, Villa blasting superbly past Safar. Four minutes later the Maños drew level when Galletti made contact with Villa's shot to divert the ball into the back of the net.

Final moments
Sávio could have sealed victory with a glorious chance midway through the half, but his shot sailed agonisingly over. Austria, who knocked out Athletic Club Bilbao in the last round, held on to eliminate another Spanish side on away goals and it is they who look forward to the quarter-final draw tomorrow.



FC Groningen 0 - 1 PSV

PSV have also overcome the second obstacle in a hectic week. The team of coach of Guus Hiddink enjoyed a 0-1 win over FC Groningen in the Groningen Ooster Park. The Holland Casino leaders have maintained an impressive unbeaten run in away games for nearly one year by now. Jefferson Farfán scored a priceless goal on the stroke of half time

PSV steered clear of trouble in the north of Holland in their challenge to win the Dutch title. The players had made a long trip by coach, knowing that the hosts would battle for every ball. Moreover the squad realized that another massive game was scheduled on Sunday afternoon in the Amsterdam Arena, so a tough night was expected.
PSV did not suffer any damage, though: they produced an accomplished display, collected three points and the players did not sustain injuries. If Mark van Bommel, Wilfred Bouma and Johann Vogel had been shown a yellow card, they would have been suspended for the Ajax game on Sunday. Captain Van Bommel in particular did not take any unnecessary risks, ahead of the Ajax clash. That’s why Phillip Cocu did a lot of running in midfield, chasing up opponents and controlling the game. Alex went into the referee’s book, when he held Groningen forward Erik Nevland, while on his way to being put clear, on fifteen minutes.

PSV found it hard to create any openings in a well-organized, effective Groningen defence. The hosts had many players in or near their own box, conceded hardly any space and opportunities were limited. Van Bommel and Vennegoor of Hesselink created slim chances; Nevland was denied a goal with a brilliant stop from Gomes at the other end.

Jefferson Farfán with his electric pace was a constant threat for the Groningen defenders. At a very convenient moment, on the stroke of half time, the Peruvian scored the opening goal. Ji-Sung Park delivered a sharp cross; the ball fell to Farfán, who, amidst a lot of players in the box, hit a powerful curling drive beyond the reach of Groningen keeper Bas Roorda; 0-1.

PSV were delighted with the half time score. Soon after the restart Farfán dangerously raced into the box, but he powered his shot against the bar. Groningen realized that they had to move players forward and the visitors got more space, but it did not really change the play of game. The hosts could not trouble PSV and the Eindhoven side completely controlled proceedings.

Vennegoor of Hesselink was taken off by Hiddink twenty minutes from final time and replaced by DaMarcus Beasley. It was a familiar substitution: Farfán was now played up front and Beasley was deployed on the right flank.

FC Groningen admitted PSV were the better side and they lacked the confidence to turn the game upside down. PSV took no risks and finished the game in their trademark efficient, business like way. Yet there was en exciting finale, when Groningen played all or nothing in extra time. PSV held on and kept their seventeenth blank sheet of the current campaign. During the long trip home to Eindhoven the players had ample opportunity to look ahead to Friday’s Champions League quarter final draw and the league clash against Ajax on Sunday afternoon.

Goal: 45´ Farfán


Thursday, March 17, 2005 

Hamburg Ressurection

Despite an impressive run of form that has taken them into Champions' League qualification contention, nobody at Hamburger SV is talking about continental trips next season just yet.

Fifth-placed HSV are just two points behind third-placed VfB Stuttgart in the race to Europe, and further revealed their credentials for qualification with a dramatic 4-3 win at Arminia Bielefeld on Saturday. Yet, Dietmar Beiersdorfer, HSV's sports manager, refuses to talk about his side's chances. In an interview with, Beiersdorfer said: "We still have nine games to go, and we are only looking at the situation game by game. If we qualify for European football at the end of the season by doing things that way, no-one will mind."

This low key approach marks a departure for a club used to European good times in the 1970s and 1980s. HSV won the European Cup in 1983 when current Bayern Munich coach Felix Magath scored the winning goal against Juventus in Athens.


Tuesday, March 15, 2005 

Anderson to bolster Benfica ranks

SL Benfica have already started building for next season's hoped-for assault on the UEFA Champions League by signing Brazilian defender Anderson.

Five-year contract
The SC Corinthians captain will switch to the Portuguese SuperLiga leaders for the 2005/06 season, ending a 17-year association with the Sao Paulo club. Anderson, 24, has agreed a five-year contract, with Benfica president Luís Filipe Vieira confirming the transfer last night.

Dream move
"I can guarantee that Anderson will be here this summer," Vieira said. Anderson has played more than 200 times for Corinthians, and was part of the side that won the FIFA Club World Championship in 2000. He said: "Playing for Benfica is a dream for me. I know it is a great club and I will adapt easily to Lisbon and to Portugal. I am anxious to start this new adventure."



Van Hooijdonk heading home

Dutch international striker Pierre van Hooijdonk will return to NAC Breda from Fenerbahçe SK in the summer.

One-year deal
The 35-year-old spent three and a half years with NAC from 1991 after joining them from his first club RBC Roosendaal. He will move back to the Eredivisie side on 1 July, having agreed a one-year contract with NAC coach Ton Lokhoff.

UEFA Cup winner
Van Hooijdonk had attracted interest from England and Spain but took the advice of national team coach Marco van Basten before accepting NAC's offer. After his first spell at the club, Van Hooijdonk played for Celtic FC, Nottingham Forest FC, SBV Vitesse, SL Benfica and Feyenoord. He lifted the 2002 UEFA Cup with the latter team before switching to Fenerbahçe in summer 2003, winning the Turkish title in his first season.



Fenerbahçe 3 - 2 Gençlerbirliği

An Alex de Souza hat-trick got us the win at the end of a tense encounter with Gençlerbirliği. Souleyman Youla gave the visitors the lead followed by two Alex penalties, once again matched by Youla before Alex took to the stage again. Serkan Balcı was sent off for his protests to the assistant referee.
Tuncay Şanlı was the only regular of late that was missing from the side, as was Pierre van Hooijdonk who seemed likely to start tonight. Christoph Daum opted to keep him on the bench, put his entrance paid off as he was the one to set up the winning goal with an elegant back heel pass.

Referee Cem Deda was to feature a lot throughout the game, making very odd decisions against both teams that would change the course of the game. Both sets of players got aggressive particularly in the second half with pushes and shoves seen on two instances.

An Alex freekick was punched over by Ömer Çatkıç in the 12th minute who repeated another save from the same man four minutes later. But the Ankara side bounced back and Youla hit a first time shot onto Skoko`s dead ball cross which was accurate enough to give them the lead, 1-0.

Mehmet Yozgatlı was on song today, creating space for himself on the right wing with his skill and crossing in well for the attackers. His break into the box resulted in a penalty, a dubious decision considering the slide tackle seemed to get the ball. Alex stepped up and scored the equaliser.

Aurelio was then brought down in the 40th minute for another penalty to be given. Alex beat Ömer again and gave us the lead seconds before half time.

A bad pass by Deniz gifted Gençler with an equaliser, scored once again by Youla who hit hard into the bottom left hand corner.

The tension grew as control was being lost by referee Deda, who took the decision to send off Serkan Balcı for a protest against the linesman in the 79th minute.

Pierre van Hooijdonk was on to add more attacking power as time was running out. Alex`s drive from the centre was concluded with a one two with the Dutchman and a great shot by Alex who saw his effort go in off the post in the 88th minute.

Fenerbahçe: Rüştü Reçber, Servet Çetin (87` Kemal Aslan), Serkan Balcı, Fabio Luciano, Ümit Özat, Marco Aurelio, Deniz Barış (57` Önder Turacı), Mehmet Yozgatlı (72` Pierre van Hooijdonk), Alex de Souza, Marcio Nobre, Nicolas Anelka

Gençlerbirliği: Ömer, Hakan (46` Ali Tandoğan), Ümit, El Saka, Uğur, Erkan, Kerem, Ayman, Skoko (46` Sertan) (73` Ayhan Tuna), Youla, Mustafa

Goals: 26`, 45`, 88` Alex de Souza (p) (Fenerbahçe), 18`, 54` Youla (Gençlerbirliği)

Turkish Superleague

Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. Fenerbahçe 24 62
2. Galatasaray 24 57
3. Trabzonspor 24 55
4. Besiktas 24 45
5. Rizespor 24 37


Monday, March 14, 2005 

Fluminense 4-0 Botafogo

FLUMINENSE: Kléber; Gabriel, Antônio Carlos, Fabiano Eller, Juan (Lino); Marcão, Arouca, Diego, Juninho; Leandro (Alex), Rodrigo Tiuí.

BOTAFOGO: Jefferson; Rogério Souza (Daniel), Scheidt, Rafael Marques, César Prates; Túlio, Leandro Carvalho, Caio (Almir), Ramón; Alex Alves, Ricardinho (Guilherme).

GOALS: 1-0, Fabiano Eller (42'); 2-0, Gabriel, (58); 3-0, Juninho, (68'); 4-0, Alex, (72')

Taça Rio

Group A
Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. Vasco da Gama 4 7
2. Botafogo 4 7
3. América 4 4


River Plate 1-0 Racing

RIVER PLATE: Franco Costanzo; Carlos Diogo,Horacio Ameli, Eduardo Tuzzio, Federico Domínguez; Luis González, Javier Mascherano, Víctor Zapata (Cristian Ledesma, 89'); Gastón Fernández (Rubens Sambueza, 84'); José Sand (Radamél Garcia, 67'), Ernesto Farías.

RACING: Cristian Lucchetti; Carlos Araujo, Gustavo Cabral (Cristian Grabinski, 72'), Diego Crosa, Javier Pinola (Cristian Pino, 76'); Milovan Morosevic, Juan Manuel Torres (Darío Husain, 80'), Juan Carlos Falcón, Sebastián Romero; Lisandro López, Marcelo Guerrero.

GOALS: 1-0, Gonzaléz (47')


Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. River Plate 5 13
2. Rosario Central 5 11
3. Estudiantes LP 5 10
4. Newell's old Boys 5 9
5. Racing 5 9


Bielefeld 3 - 4 Hamburg SV

The game in the sold out Schüco Arena was only two minutes old, as HSV struck for the first time. A poor pass in the home defence was punished by Schlicke who crossed from the right towards where both Takahara and Lauth were lurking in the Bielefeld area. The Japanese striker appeared to have missed his chance, but the ball found its way through to Lauth, who put HSV in front from close range, scoring his 4th goal of the season.

Danger man Buckley
The home side to their credit were not rattled by the early setback and took the game by the horns. There followed chances for their star South African striker Delron Buckley, who was foiled by Wächter in the HSV goal (9., 15.) and then had an effort blocked by the visiting defence (15.). HSV seemed to go AWOL during this period, and so it was no surprise that the home side levelled on 21 minutes, after a blatant dive by Bielefeld’s Vata gave the home side a free kick in a promising position. Porcello struck the ball firmly through the disintegrating HSV wall, and to be honest Wächter looked as if he was expecting the ball to go the other way.

Arminia on top
That goal put the wind in the sails of the home side, who played aggressively, giving HSV no time to settle on the ball. Bielefeld went ahead on 27 minutes, as a superb cross found Porcello five metres out. He headed goal wards and Wächter got his hand to the ball, but could only parry it into the path of Vata, who scored unmarked at the near post from almost on the goal line.

Sergej scores in a winter wonderland
The weather took a turn for the worse and heavy snow began to hamper conditions. HSV began to make more of a game of it and won a dubious free kick, as Takahara fell very easily near the Bielefeld box on 38 minutes. Beinlich played the ball into the area where the home defence was concentrating on the HSV man mountain skipper van Buyten. That mistake allowed Sergej Barbarez to equalise with a header from only 8 metres out. For the Bosnian goal-getter, it was his 11th goal of the season.

Boulahrouz-first HSV goal!
Three minutes before half time Buckley blocked a free kick by Beinlich, and the ball fell to the feet of Boulahrouz, who turned on a sixpence and shot between the legs of Borges and into the far corner of the net. It was the classy Dutch-born defender’s first goal for HSV and of course cause for massive celebration in the HSV camp.

Scrappy second half
The conditions didn’t allow attractive football, and the second half was constantly interrupted by a series of fouls and free kicks. HSV decided to sit back and defend their slender lead, going forward occasionally on the counter attack. On 71 minutes, HSV struck again as Lauth received the ball on the halfway line. The striker played a square pass to the second half substitute Mahdavikia, who hesitated and seemed to have fluffed his chance of scoring at first. The little Iranian however kept going and fired in a shot which took a deflection off Porcello, before passing the stranded Hain in the Bielefeld goal to give HSV a 4-2 lead.

Brecko gets his marching orders
Arminia coach Rapolder went for all out attack and brought on Pinto and Leon. Shortly afterwards, HSV’s young defender Brecko was dubiously sent off for what the referee Wack deemed to be a second yellow card offence. Three minutes from time, the ever dangerous Buckley scored his 15th goal of the season to set up a late flurry by the home side. But HSV was having none of it and played out the remaining minutes for a win which has move them up to 4th place in the Bundesliga table.

Arminia Bielefeld: Hain - Lenze (73.Leon), Borges, Gabriel, Schuler - Owomoyela, Kauf, Dammeier (46.Boakye), Buckely - Porcello, Vata (73.Pinto)

HSV: Wächter - Schlicke, van Buyten, Boulahrouz, Brecko - Benjamin, Jarolim, Beinlich, Barbarez (90.Reinhardt) - Lauth (90.Kucukovic), Takahara (46.Mahdavikia)

Goals: 0:1 Lauth (02.), 1:1 Porcello (21.), 2:1 Vata (27.), 2:2 Barbarez (38.), 2:3 Boulahrouz (42.), 2:4 Mahdavikia (71.), 3:4 Buckely (87.)



Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. Schalke 25 53
2. Bayern 25 50
3. Stuttgart 25 45
4. Bremen 25 44
5. Hamburg 25 43


PSV 4 - 0 ADO Den Haag

PSV had a bright start to a hectic week in which they play three games. The leaders of the Holland Casino Eredivisie eased to a comfortable 4-0 win in the Eindhoven Philips Stadium over ADO Den Haag. Ji-Sung Park was the star of the afternoon in a game that was dominated by the hosts from start to finish.

PSV shrugged off ADO Den Haag, beforehand qualified as ‘a stubborn side’, as if they were taking a Sunday afternoon walk in the park. The team coached by Guus Hiddink, who were apparently not feeling the fatigue of the AS Monaco clash, did not take off their feet of the pedal, although they will face tough opponents as FC Groningen and Ajax on respectively Thursday night and Sunday afternoon. They proved to be grown-up team once again and controlled the game in a mature, business-like manner.
It was not the first time this season that PSV had a dream start. Only six minutes were on the clock when Phillip Cocu fed Ji-Sung Park, who headed the ball past ADO Den Haag keeper Dorus de Vries;1-0. PSV were on top and that did not change in the remaining minutes of the game.

ADO Den Haag had hardly if any influence in the proceedings and did not create a single chance in the first period. PSV were in control and patiently built up their moves, trying to find space to score a second goal. They were successful on the half hour mark. Park intercepted a pass and fired against the inside of the post. PSV captain Mark van Bommel was on the right place to finish home the rebound; 2-0.

Minutes before Young-Pyo Lee had also hit the inside of the post. The only worry PSV might have had was that Van Bommel, Bouma en Vogel would not pick up a yellow card, because of which they would be suspended for the next game. And the players also were anxious not to sustain injuries at this stage of the campaign. PSV added a third goal on the verge of half time. Cocu was again provider; he found Park who outwitted his marker before superbly slotting home; 3-0

Johann Vogel had been taken off at half time and Hiddink brought on the American international DaMarcus Beasley as an extra forward. The game was virtually over and ADO did not show any inspiration to pull one back. PSV did not have to dig deep in their resources to control the game, which was a one-sided affair in the second period as well. Robert, who left the bench thirty minutes from final time, was again granted some playing time (he took over from Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink) and John de Jong was also brought on, against his former club. He replaced Farfán. PSV ended the rout at the death, when Alex produced a trade-mark glancing header from a corner. Final score: 4-0.

PSV will play two away games. The Eindhoven team will travel to FC Groningen on Thursday night and Ajax will play hosts to PSV in the ArenA on Sunday afternoon.

Goals: 6´ Park, 28´ Van Bommel, 42´ Park, 88´ Alex

Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. PSV 24 61
2. AZ 24 57
3. Ajax 24 53
4. Feyenoord 24 47
5. Vitesse 25 43


Benfica 2 – 0 Gil Vicente

SL Benfica moved three points clear of FC Porto at the top of the SuperLiga on Saturday night after defeating Gil Vicente FC 2-0 at the Estádio da Luz.

Trapattoni started with Pedro Mantorras alongside Norwegian international Azar Karadas in attack, and just six minutes into the second-half the Angolan striker made the breakthrough, drilling in a fierce low shot from just outside the penalty area to score his second goal of the season.

Miguel goal
Benfica remained in control and after Roversio had been sent off for Gil Vicente on 72 minutes, the home side doubled their lead two minutes from time when Miguel completed an excellent move by sliding the ball in from a tight angle after being put through by João Pereira.

Benfica – Quim; Miguel, Luisão, Ricardo Rocha e Dos Santos; Petit, Manuel Fernandes; Simão (cap.), Geovanni; Mantorras (67’ João Pereira) e Karadas.

Gil Vicente – Adriano; Rovérsio, Gregory, Nuno Amaro e Nandinho (73’ Sidrailson); Bruno Tiago (78’ Paulo Costa), Ednilson, Casquilha (cap.) (62’ Carlitos) e Luís Coentrão; Fábio Januário e Carlos Carneiro.

Goals: Mantorras (51’), Miguel (88’).


Sunday, March 13, 2005 

Dep. Colonia 0-3 Peñarol

Martín Garcia

DEP. COLONIA: Martín Barlocco; Diego Garay (Hebert Noya, 60'), Marcelo De Souza, Carlos Canobbio, Diego Fernández; Freddy Freire, Carlos Camejo (Jorge Barreto, 45'), Gustavo Latrónico, Mario Leguizamón (Richard Huelmo, 60'); Jorge Delgado, Oscar Dastés.

PEÑAROL: Juan Obelar; Ronald Ramírez, Jean Pierre, Cristian González, Alvaro Alonso; Pablo Gaglianone (Alejandro Correa, 60'), Fabián Césaro, Gabriel Cedrés, Pablo Russo (Marcelo Tejera, 75'); Gonzalo Pizzichillo, Martín García (Sergio Leal, 67').

GOALS: 0-1, Pablo Russo (5'); 0-2, Martín García (39'); 0-3, Gonzalo Pizzichillo (73').


Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. Defensor Sporting 2 6
2. Nacional 2 6
3. Peñarol 2 4
4. Fénix 2 4
5. Rocha FC 2 4


Wisła Kraków 1-0 Katowice

WISLA: Majdan; Baszczyński, Kłos, Głowacki, Mijailovic; Vidliczka (Brożek, 54'), Sobolewski, Cantoro, Zieńczuk (Stolarczyk, 87'); Frankowski, Żurawski

KATOWICE: Sławik; Markowski, Polczak, Bartnik; Widuch, Czerwiec (Mielnik, 86'), Górski, Andruszczak, Wijas; Plizga, Onyekachi (Krauze, 81')

GOALS: 1-0, Zieńczuk (12')


Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. Wisla 14 38
2. Legia 14 30
3. Groclin 14 28
4. Amica 13 24
5. Zaglebie 13 29


Milan 1-0 Sampdoria

Milan came through a tough test at home to Sampdoria to gather a 1-0 win thanks to a second-half header from Kaka. The Rossoneri lost both captain Paolo Maldini and Alessandro Nesta to injury in the first period but showed great determination and application to the task to record their seventh straight league win, and ninth in all competitions, to move to the top of the table on 63 points. Third-placed Samp came to the San Siro with a game plan of containment and breaking on the counter-attack and it took the man-of-the-moment, Kaka to break the deadlock on 64 minutes as he met a wonderful Andrea Pirlo cross to place a firm header in the back of the net. The visitors did increase the pressure after that but Carlo Ancelotti’s men were never going to let their lead slip, with Jaap Stam making an important goalline clearance near the end.

MILAN: Dida; Cafu, Nesta (Costacurta, 44'), Stam, Maldini (Serginho, 34'); Gattuso, Pirlo, Seedorf; Rui Costa (Ambrosini, 75'), Kakà; Crespo.

SAMPDORIA: Antonioli; Zenoni, Pavan, Falcone, Pisano (Gasbarroni, 69'); Diana (Doni, 77'), Palombo, Volpi, Tonetto; Flachi, Rossini (Kutuzov, 20')

GOALS: 1-0, Kakà (65')


Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. Milan 28 63
2. Juventus 28 63
3. Internazionale 28 47
4. Sampdoria 28 47
5. Udinese 28 45



Debrecen 2-0 Honvéd

DEBRECEN: Csernyánszki; Kiss Z., Éger, Komlósi, Szatmári (Madar, 56'); Böőr, Nikolov, Sándor T., Halmosi; Kolakovic (Kerekes, 46'), Bogdanovic (Virág, 87')

HONVÉD: Takács T.; Hornyák, Budovinszky, Marito, Takács Z.; Mészáros, Szili, Vadócz, Miro (Bojtor, 33')(Csobánki, 86'); Genito, Patricio (Kozarek, 55')

GOALS: 1-0, Éger (84'); 2-0, Virág (87')


Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. Debrecen 16 35
2. Ferencváros 16 35
3. Újpest 16 29
4. ZTE 16 27
5. Györ 16 27
8. Honvéd 16 20


Barcelona 2-0 Athletic

FC Barcelona opened up an eleven-point lead at the top of the Primera División on Saturday night after beating Athletic Club Bilbao 2-0 at Camp Nou with Deco and Ludovic Giuly both finding the target.

Eto'o chance
The Catalan club managed to put Tuesday's exit from the UEFA Champions League firmly behind them during the match, although they were forced to soak up some early pressure from the visitors. Leading goal scorer Samuel Eto'o missed a perfect chance to put Barça in front on 15 minutes with goalkeeper Dani Aranzubia stranded.

Deco delivers
Barça's persistence paid off five minutes later when Rafael Márquez put Deco through to shoot past Aranzubia - the ball taking a deflection off Luis Prieto before flying inside the near post. The home side went 2-0 up just before half-time when Ronaldinho found Giuly free on the right. The Frenchman cut inside to fire hard and low past Aranzubia.

Valdés saves
Athletic coach brought on young marksman Fernando Llorrente to provide extra firepower but it was Joseba Etxeberria who almost scored on the hour - Víctor Valdés coming out on top in the one-on-one as the home side held on to win 2-0.

BARCELONA: Valdés; Belletti, Puyol, Oleguer, Sylvinho, Márquez (Albertini, 66'); Xavi, Deco (Iniesta,66'), Giuly; Ronaldinho, Et'o (Maxi López, 78')

ATHLETIC: Aranzubia; Iraola, Lacruz, Luis Prieto, Javi González (Llorente, 46'); Murillo, Gurpegi (Tiko, 62'), Orbaiz, Del Horno; Etxeberria (Guerrero, 80'), Ezquerro

GOALS: 1-0, Deco (21'); 2-0, Giuly (39')


Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. Barcelona 28 75
2. Real Madrid 28 54
3. Villareal 28 47
4. Espanyol 28 45
5. Betis 28 45
10. Athletic 27 38



Celtic 6-0 Dunfermline

CELTIC: Douglas; McNamara (Beatie, 80'), Balde, Varga, Laursen (Henchoz, 75'); McGeady (Wallace, 84'), Lennon, Petrov, Thompson; Bellamy, Hartson.

DUNFERMLINE: Stillie; Campbel, S. Wilson, Skerla, Tod, C Wilson (McKeown, 85'); Ross, Nicholson, Young; Christiansen, Donnely (McGlinchie, 88').

GOALS: 1-0, Hartson (6'); 2-0, McGeady (62'); 3-0, Hartson (69'); 4-0, Petrov (72'); 5-0, Petrov (75'); 6-0, (Beattie, 89')


Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. Rangers 30 75
2. Celtic 28 71
3. Aberdeen 29 48
4. Hibernian 29 47
5. Hearts 29 47


Wolfsburg 1-0 Hanover

VfL Wolfsburg is still the undisputed number one club in Niedersachsen. A crowd of 25.921 in the VOLKSWAGEN ARENA saw them beat their bitter rivals Hanover 1-0 in round 25 of the Bundesliga on Saturday afternoon. The deciding goal of the game came after only six minutes, as Carlos Menseguez scored fort he Wolves to give them their first win since the winter break. For the Argentinean match winner it was his first ever Bundesliga goal for the Wolves…

Perfect start
The Niedersachsen derby in the VOLKSWAGENARENA began at a furious pace, with both sides traying to make their mark by playing attacking football, which produced chances in the opening minutes. On 6 minutes, the home side took the lead as Martin Petrov took the ball off Hanover’s Stajner and started a counter attack. The Bulgarian winger waited until the perfect moment, before passing to the better-placed Menseguez, who a split second beforehand had been offside. Petrov’s patience was to pay off because the Argentinean striker rather luckily slotted home his first goal for the club after the ball was deflected by the Hanover keeper Enke.

Hanover chances go begging
The visiting side created good chances as they moved down the right using the American international Cherundolo and the Brazilian Leandro. Wolves’ hearts were in their mouths as a shot by Cherundolo touched the crossbar before going over. Stajner missed what can only be described as two sitters as he was perfectly placed in the Wolfsburg penalty area. Hanover began to make their mark on the game after figuring out how to deal with Petrov and Menseguez, who had caused havoc in their defence in the early stages of the Bundesliga round 25 clash. The Wolves held onto their slender lead, as the ref blew for half time.

Hanover dominate but…
Although the Hanover coach Ewald Lienen brought on the attack-minded Paunovic for Dabrowski at the start of the second half, the visitors failed to breach the Wolves’ defensive wall. The game petered out somewhat as the home side decide to sit back and defend their slender lead. Hanover looked to be void of ideas in n midfield, and it took until the latter stages of the match before the visitors threatened again. Paunovic missed a real sitter with a header, while Cherundolo curled yet another effort onto the Wolfsburg crossbar.

Keeper almost scores!
In the dying seconds of the match, the Hanover keeper Enke came up field for a Hanover corner, and almost scored! The corner kick was not taken cleanly by the Wolves keeper Jentzsch, and he almost put away the rebound. After the match, the Wolves coach Erik Gerets admitted that his side had been the more fortunate on the day. He did however quite rightly point out, that the Wolves have had almost no luck at all over the past few weeks. The win keeps them in 8th place in the Bundesliga table, and nicely poised for the coming games.

WOLFSBURG: Jentzsch - Rytter, Quiroga, Hofland - Thiam - Karhan, Schnoor - Fischer - Menseguez, Klimowicz, M. Petrov

HANOVER: Enke - Cherundolo, Mertesacker, Zuraw, Vinicius - de Guzman, Lala, Dabrowski - Krupnikovic - Leandro, Stajner

GOALS: 1-0, Menseguez (6')


Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. Schalke 25 53
2. Bayern 25 50
3. Stuttgart 25 45
4. Bremen 25 44
5. Hamburg 25 43
8. Wolfsburg 25 37


Thursday, March 10, 2005 

Monaco 0 - 2 PSV (Aggregate: 0-3) - CL

Last season's UEFA Champions League finalists AS Monaco FC bowed out as goals from Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink and DaMarcus Beasley took PSV Eindhoven through to the last eight.

Crucial goals
Vennegoor of Hesselink powered in a header to give PSV a crucial away goal midway through the first half and leave Monaco needing three to progress. It proved too tall an order against a powerful and well-disciplined Dutch side, who sealed a 3-0 aggregate win when Beasley added another goal not long after arriving as a substitute.

Chevantón comeback
Fit-again Monaco striker Ernesto Chevantón was handed his first start of 2005, partnering Javier Saviola in attack while Mohamed Kallon moved to the right. Coach Didier Deschamps, still without injured defender Sébastien Squillaci, otherwise kept faith with the team that lost 1-0 in Eindhoven. PSV named an unchanged side, with Jefferson Farfán and Ji-Sung Park patrolling the flanks and Vennegoor of Hesselink up front.

Cagey start
The game started in cagey fashion with neither side prepared to take any early risks. Monaco created the first clear chance in the eleventh minute, Jaroslav Plašil chipping through for Kallon who saw his left-footed shot smothered by Heurelho Gomes. On 18 minutes, PSV were stretched again when Chevantón broke free down the right and slipped a pass inside for Saviola who found Plašil, but the Czech midfield player hesitated long enough to allow André Ooijer to block his shot. Plašil was in space again moments later but fizzed a shot just over the bar.

PSV strike
PSV then showed how dangerous they are on the break, Park racing on to a flicked header from Vennegoor of Hesselink only to see his cross blocked at the near post. However, it was still against the run of play when PSV took the lead on 27 minutes. As was the case in the first leg, the goal came from a corner, Phillip Cocu crossing from the right and Vennegoor of Hesselink arriving unopposed at the near post to head in. It left last season's finalists needing three goals to avoid elimination.

Roma save
Monaco seemed shell-shocked and struggled to find their rhythm again. Aside from another Chevantón free-kick, this time easily saved by Gomes, they posed little attacking threat before the break. Indeed Monaco were fortunate not to go in two down at half-time as Park burst through and saw his attempted lob saved by Flavio Roma.

Visitors well-organised
The home side came out with renewed vigour in the second half but PSV showed good organisation and were proving difficult to break down. Cocu was particularly impressive, closing down the spaces in front of his defence. In the 48th minute, Saviola threaded a pass through for Chevantón but the Uruguayan was brilliantly marshalled by Wilfred Bouma who eventually blocked the shot.

Saviola shoots over
For once Chevantón succeeded in working space for himself inside the box just after the hour, but this time his snap-shot was pushed out by Gomes diving to his left. The loose ball dropped for Kallon, he cut the ball back for Saviola but the Argentinian lifted his shot over from close range.

Lead increases
Emmanuel Adebayor came on for Plašil to give Monaco a three-pronged attack, but soon PSV scored again. Park did well to tease a low cross behind Monaco's defence and Beasley, who two minutes earlier had replaced Vennegoor of Hesselink, sidefooted in. Monaco's frustration boiled over in the closing stages and Gaël Givet was shown a straight red card for a clumsy foul on Farfán.

Goals: 26' Vennegoor, 69' Beasley


Tuesday, March 08, 2005 

Milan 1-0 Chelsea (CL)

Hernán Crespo struck added a second-leg goal to add to the one he scored in the first to break Manchester United FC hearts and send AC Milan into the UEFA Champions League quarter-finals.

Great header
The Argentina striker scored the only goal of the game at Old Trafford a fortnight ago and repeated the feat at the San Siro tonight to give his side a 2-0 aggregate success. His goal came just after the hour, a superb looping header that Tim Howard could do nothing about.

Stam fit
Crespo was in the side as he continues to deputise for the injured Andriy Shevchenko, and played at the apex of a three-pronged attack with Rui Costa and Kaká. Carlo Ancelotti made just one change from the victory in Manchester in the first leg, with Jaap Stam returning to the centre of the Milan defence. The Dutch international's former United colleague Gary Neville was his side's only absentee.

Confident start
The English club have a disappointing record in Italy, with just a solitary win in the country, but knew that nothing other than victory would be enough after the 1-0 defeat at Old Trafford in the first leg. However, the poise and confidence the visitors displayed in the first 45 minutes did not speak of a side that was uncertain about its future in the competition.

Happy memories
The last time Sir Alex Ferguson's side had played a competitive game at this stadium was against FC Internazionale Milano en route to winning the 1998/99 Champions League. In that quarter-final second leg, the English side successfully protected a 2-0 first-leg lead with a 1-1 draw.

Giggs chance
But they had a more difficult feat this evening, knowing they had to score to remain in the competition. After absorbing some early Milan pressure, Ryan Giggs almost did so on the half-hour when he latched onto Ruud van Nistelrooij's through-ball and hit a low drive past Dida that came back off the far post.

Kaká denied
On a night when short passes under pressure, clever marking and calm nerves were key features, it was typical that a player of Giggs ilk would come to the fore and moments later, Milan's own playmaker, Kaká also hit the woodwork. The Brazilian youngster seized upon a poor piece of control by Mikaël Silvestre and blasted a volley that grazed the crossbar.

Defiant defences
But they were rare shots at goal as United's central defence partnership of Rio Ferdinand and Silvestre were supplemented by Wes Brown and Roy Keane working overtime. The English side's composure was equalled by the Italian champions, however, as Milan's experienced rearguard comfortably dealt with Van Nistelrooij and Rooney.

Milan comfortable
It is a tactic that is well used in Serie A, absorbing pressure and then capitalising on the counterattack, and when Giggs was forced from the field to get treatment after receiving an accidental elbow from Gennaro Gattuso, Crespo had two quickfire opportunities. First he was denied a shooting opportunity with a superb last-gasp intervention from Ferdinand, before moments later he met an arcing cross with a firm header, but could not direct the effort on target.

Crespo goal
Giggs was hurriedly replaced by Quinton Fortune, but Milan scored almost immediately. Brazilian right-back Cafu profited from room to attack down United's left and crossed for Crespo to send a header beyond the despairing Howard.

Chance missed
United had their opportunities to equalise on the night but the prospects of them scoring twice against a resolute Milan rearguard appeared slim. Van Nistelrooij had the best of their chances, but his lack of match sharpness after nearly three months out showed when he pulled a right-footed effort wide of the upright, and United's last chance had gone.



Estrela da Amadora 1-0 Desportivo de Chaves

EST. AMADORA: Veiga; Quim Berto, Hugo Carreira, Carlos, Hugo Luz; Semedo, Adilson (Nelsinho, 54'), Jordão, Rui Borges (Zamorano, 77'); Rómulo, Henrique (Davide, 59').

DESP. CHAVES: Riça; Aílton, Tiago Lemos, Peu, Tony, Kasongo; Isidro (Wegno, 63'), Marinescu, João Fernandes (Chiquinho, 45'), Carlos Viana (Nuno Rocha, 76'); Pedro Geromel.

GOALS: 1-0, Rómulo (40')


Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. Paços de Ferreira 24 51
2. Est. Amadora 24 46
3. Naval 24 43


Flamengo 2-2 Botafogo

FLAENGO: Diego; Ricardo Lopes, Rodrigo, Fabiano, André Santos; Júnior, Jônatas, Caio (Fellype Gabriel), Renato; Marcos Denner (Dimba), Emerson.

BOTAFOGO: Jefferson; Rogério Souza, Rafael Marques, Scheidt, César Prates; Túlio, Leandro Carvalho (Daniel), Ramon, Alex Alves; Ricardinho (Almir), Guilherme (Caio).

GOALS: 0-1, Túlio (27'); 1-1, Emerson (34'); 2-1, Renato (73'); 2-2, Ramón (92')

Group A

Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. Botafogo 3 7
2. Volta Redonda 3 7
3. Friburguense 3 5
4. Vasco da Gama 3 4
5. Portuguesa 3 3


River Plate 3-1 Insituto

Ernesto Farías

RIVER PLATE: Franco Costanzo; Oscar Ahumada, Horacio Ameli, Eduardo Tuzzio, Lucas Mareque; Javier Mascherano, Crisitan Ledesma, Rubens Sambueza; Gastón Fernández (Falcao García, 85'); Ernesto Farías (Frederico Almerares, 84'), José Sand (Luis Gonzaléz, 69').

INSTITUTO: Mauricio Caranta; Franco Sanchírico; Julio Moreyra (Fernando Clementz, 77'), Deivis Barone, Hernán Pagés, Enrique Ortíz; Leonel Pilipauskas, Juan Cobo, Adrián Peralta; Josemir Lujambio, Daniel Jiménez.

GOALS: 0-1, Jiménez (9'); 1-1, Farías (20'); 2-1, Farías (31'); 3-1, Fernandéz (81')


Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. Rosario Central 4 10
2. River Plate 4 10
3. Racing 4 9
4. Quilmes 4 7
5. Lanús 4 7


Hamburger SV 1 - 0 Bayer Leverkusen

HSV beat Bayer Leverkusen in front of a crowd of 43,959 in the AOL Arena on Saturday afternoon, thanks to a 21st minute header by skipper Daniel van Buyten following a corner by Stefan Beinlich. The game was a scrappy affair with few clear cut chances. New number one keeper Stefan Wächter played superbly and kept his side ahead with a stunning save as Leverkusen’s Jacek Krzynowek looked certain to score. The victory takes HSV up to fifth place in the Bundesliga table, at least for 24 hours…

Four changes
The HSV coach Thomas Doll made four changes to the side which lost 1-4 away to Hertha last time out. Stefan Wächter took over between the posts for the-out of form Martin Pickenhagen. Wicky (hamstring) and Boulahrouz (5 yellow cards), were replaced by Benjamin and Reinhardt respectively. Up front Lauth lined up alongside Takahara, with Barbarez just behind the front two. As expected, Moreira made way for the former 1860 Munich striker.

Bayer injury woes
Bayer coach Augenthaler made only one change to his side which drew 1-1 at home to Stuttgart last time out. Awful injuries sustained by his first choice defenders meant that Augenthaler was robbed of the considerable services of Roque Junior, Nowotny, Babic and Juan. Bayer was forced to revert to a back three featuring -Bracker, Ramelow and Placente. The 17 year old Spaniard Castro started the game on the right of midfield.

Subdued start
Both sides started the match not prepared to give an inch of territory to the other, so there was no real goalmouth action fort he first twenty minutes. Then out of the blue, the HSV skipper Daniel van Buyten out jumped Ramelow to head in a Beinlich corner on 21 minutes. The visitors had problems stringing together their passes and indeed it was HSV who occasionally threatened with counter attacks. Nothing much happened until shortly before the break, then Voronin played a sweet ball through to Krzynowek who found himself on his own against Wächter. The HSV keeper produced a superb stop to deny the Polish midfielder. The home side went into the break deserving their one goal lead.

Klingbeil picks up fifth yellow card
Although the better side HSV failed to finish off the side which will play Liverpool, in the second leg of their Champions League quarter final next week. Niggly fouls dominated the second half; and defender Klingbeil picked up a fifth yellow card, ruling him out of the trip to Arminia Bielefeld next Saturday. The game dragged on and not long before the end, the HSV skipper van Buyten came to the rescue as a miscued clearance by Beinlich found its way to the feet of Berbatov, who was hustled out of a close range shot.

HSV: Wächter - Schlicke, van Buyten, Reinhardt, Klingbeil - Benjamin, Jarolim, (59.Mahdavikia) Beinlich, Barbarez - Lauth (77.Kucukovic), Takahara (84.Moreira)

Bayer Leverkusen: Butt - Callsen-Bracker, Ramelow, Placente - Castro (80.Donavan), Schneider, Ponte, Krzynowek, Freier (67.Bierofka) - Berbatov, Voronin,(71.Franca)

Goals: 1:0 Van Buyten (21.)


Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. Bayern 24 50
2. Schalke 24 50
3. Bremen 24 43
4. Stuttgart 24 42
5. Hertha 24 40
6. Hamburger 24 40

Sunday, March 06, 2005 

Athletic 3-1 Albacete

ATHLETIC: Aranzubia; Javi González, Lacruz, Prieto, Casas (Guerrero, 46'); Orbaiz, Gurpegui; Iraola, Etxeberria (Solabarrieta, 83'), Ezquerro; Urzaiz (Llorente, 61')

ALBACETE: Valbuena; Pablon (Mikel, 76'), Gaspar, Santi (Oscar Montiel, 64'), Mingo; Viaud; Redondo, Pacheco, David Sánchez (Mark González, 54'), Peña; Rubén Castro.

GOALS: 0-1, Rubén Castro (13'); 1-1, Ezquerro (41'); 2-1, Lacruz (71'); 3-1, Guerrero (94').

Primera Liga

Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. Barcelona 27 62
2. R. Madrid 27 54
3. Espanyol 27 45
4. Villarreal 27 44
5. Sevilla 27 43
10. Athletic 26 38


Peñarol 2-2 Tacuarembó

PEÑAROL: Federico Elduayen; Ronald Ramírez, Jean Pierre, Cristian González, Alvaro Alonso (Marcelo Tejera, 62'); Fabián Césaro (Alejandro Correa, 79'), Pablo Gaglianone (Gonzalo Pizzichillo, 76'), Gabriel Cedrés, Sergio Leal; Adrián Apellaniz, Martín García.

TACUAREMBÓ: Sergio Martínez; Nicanor Leal, Delmar Escotto, Sergio Bica, Marcelo Martusciello (Baltasar Silva, 74'); Guillermo Dutra, Guillermo Almada, Sergio Silvera (Gonzalo Vargas, 84'), Franco Sosa; Henderson Machado, Celestino Tejera (Néstor Silva, 65').

GOALS: 1-0, Martín García (39');1-1, Celestino Tejera (47'); 1-2, Franco Sosa (49'); 2-2, Marcelo Tejera (78').


Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. Liverpool 1 3
2. Defensor 1 3
3. Nacional 1 3
4. Dep. Colonia 1 3
5. Fénix 1 3
9. Peñarol 1 1


Atalanta 1-2 Milan

Milan turned on the late show yet again to grab an incredible victory at Atalanta. With the game well into stoppage time and the score at one-all, Andrea Pirlo popped-up to fire in from close range. Massimo Ambrosini had earlier put the Rossoneri ahead on 71 minutes, only for Stephen Makinwa to equalise a minute later.

Coach Carlo Ancelotti made a number of changes to his starting line-up, with Jaap Stam and Alessandro Costacurta coming into the defence alongside the central pairing of Paolo Maldini and Alessandro Nesta, while Cristian Brocchi and Vikash Dhorasoo offered support to Pirlo in midfield. Jon Dahl Tomasson partnered Hernan Crespo in attack, with Kaka playing in the free role behind the front two.

The first clear-cut chance fell to Milan on six minutes when a corner from the right was met on the half-volley by Crespo but the ball spun off the striker’s foot and was headed away. Kaka then made a trademark run to the edge of the Atalanta area only to be held back but Pirlo hit his free-kick against the wall. Then at the other end, a curling Antonio Bernardini free-kick from the left evaded everyone in the area, but fortunately the ball came back off the base of the far post. Maldini almost ghosted on to a Kaka through-ball, but goalkeeper Alex Calderoni did well to close down the space and block the captain’s close-range effort. The uneven pitch was not helping Milan’s passing game and when they did find a shooting opportunity, Crespo and Stam fired over. Just before the break, Costacurta followed Dhorasoo into the referee’s book for a late challenge on Motta.

Ancelotti made no changes during the break and in an even opening to the second period, Dida was called into action as the Brazilian got down to his left to gather a Makinwa snap-shot. Nesta was then adjudged not to have held back Makinwa on the edge of the area and on 59 minutes Serginho replaced Dhorasoo in midfield and was soon followed by Massimo Ambrosini who came on for Brocchi. Milan tried working the ball through the middle, but Tomasson was crowded out as he received a pass with his back to goal.

The game really came to life on 71 minutes when Ambrosini broke the deadlock with a well-placed header from almost on the penalty-spot following a Pirlo free-kick, but just 60 seconds later the home side equalised in almost a mirror image as Makinwa rose in the area to meet a free-kick and head home. Dida then kept the sides level as he stood firm to deny Lazzari from almost in front of goal. Filippo Inzaghi came on for Crespo and as the game continued to flow from end to end, Ambrosini drilled a shot wide of the post. However, Makinwa was a constant threat and the Nigerian somehow put a free header wide of the goal while Inzaghi nearly bounced on a loose ball in the area, but the goalkeeper cleared with difficulty. Then in the dying moments, Tomasson controlled the ball on his chest in the area only to hit an overhead volley into the keeper’s body.

The three added minutes were just about up when Milan launched another foray and as the ball was pushed out by Calderoni following an Inzaghi header, Pirlo was there to drive in the winner from close range to seal another last-gasp victory.

ATALANTA: Calderoni; Rivalta, Natali, Capelli; Motta, Montolivo, Bernardini, Marcolini (Innocenti 86), Bellini; Lazzari, Makinwa (Sinigaglia 91)

MILAN: Dida; Stam, Nesta, Maldini, Costacurta; Brocchi (Ambrosini 61), Pirlo, Dhorasoo (Serginho 60); Kakà; Crespo (Inzaghi 77), Tomasson

GOALS: 0-1, Ambrosini (72'); 1-1, Makinwa (73'); 1-2, Pirlo (94')



Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. Milan 27 60
2. Juventus 27 60
3. Sampdoria 27 47
4. Internazionale 27 46
5. Udinese 27 42


Hibernian 1-3 Celtic

HIBERNIAN: Simon Brown; Smith, Caldwell, Murray, Murphy; Scott Brown, Orman (Beuzelin, 46'), Whittaker, Sheils; O'Connor (Sproule, 81'), Riordan (Konte, 81').

CELTIC: Douglas; McNamara, Balde, Varga, Laursen; Petrov, Sutton, Lennon, Thompson (Fernandes, 81'); Hartson (Beatie, 74'), Bellamy.

GOALS: 0-1, Petrov (5'); 0-2, Hartson (31'); 0-3, Bellamy (70'); 1-3, Beuzelin (90')



Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. Rangers 29 72
2. Celtic 27 68
3. Hibernian 28 47
4. Aberdeen 28 45
5. Hearts 28 42


Monchengladbach 1-0 Wolfsburg

The Wolves threw away what they thought to be a certain point in the Borussen Park on Saturday afternoon, as a late goal by Vaclav Sverkos put paid to any Wolfsburg ambitions of taking something from the Bundesliga round 24 match. In a scrappy game with little goalmouth action, the big crowd saw an even fist half. After the break however, the Wolves seemed to lose the plot somewhat. The win pulled Gladbach clear of the dreaded drop zone for the present moment. This latest loss away from home has taken the Wolves further away from the lucrative international places.

Forced changes
The Wolfsburg coach Erik Gerets was forced to do without the considerable services of Quiroga (suspended) and Weiser (knee problem). Maik Franz took the place of the missing Argentinean, while there was a surprise recall fort he German international striker Thomas Brdaric to the starting line-up. Both sides tried hard at the start, but were rarely able to string more than three passes together in one move. On ten minutes, Brdaric went close with a header which flew just over the bar.

Niggly fouls
The flow of the game was constantly interrupted by niggly fouls, which meant that most of the few chances created came from dead ball situations. Both sides failed to reach their target players with either promising free kicks or corners. The only real chance for the home side fell to Milan Fukal on 25 minutes. A Neuville corner from the right was headed by Sonck to the back post where Fukal was lurking, the Czech-born player's shot struck the outside of a post. The game remained goalless at half time.

Gladbach on top
Gladbach improved dramatically at the start of the second half. Their Dutch-born coach Dick Advokaat must have found the right words at half time! They came out as if on a mission, and had the visitors on the back foot for most of the time. A period of sustained pressure by Gladbach, saw them waste several chances. On 52 minutes, Sonck was foiled by the Wolves skipper Simon Jenzsch, as he headed towards goal from close range, only 2 minutes later, Neuville went close with a shot as he rounded off a nice looking counter attack. On 56 minutes, Fukal also went close with a powerful header.

Flash in the pan
That 6 minute period of pressure turned out to be only a flash in the pan. After an hour the game settled down and began to resemble the mediocre level of the first half. The Wolves tried to press forward, but things failed to click up front, and their playmaker Andres D’Alessandro remained almost invisible all game. The home side made a late push for glory and Advokaat brought on Sverkos, it was a move which was to pay handsome dividends, because it was Sverkos who got the better of Rytter on 87 minutes to score from close range while falling to the ground, following good work by Neuville and Fukal.

Deserved win
On the balance of play, the home side deserved this crucial win, which has given them some breathing space above the relegation zone. The Wolves can only point the finger of blame at themselves after yet another lacklustre performance away from home. All Wolves fans will be hoping that their side will be able to return to winning ways in round 25, as they take on Hanover.

Borussia Mönchengladbach: Keller - Fukal, Moore, van Kerckhoven, Jansen - Thijs - Kluge, Böhme - Ulich - Sonck, Neuville

VfL Wolfsburg: Jentzsch - Rytter, Franz, Hofland, Schnoor - Thiam - Karhan - D'Alessandro - M. Petrov - Brdaric, Klimowicz

Goals: 1:0 Sverkos (87.)



Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. Bayern 24 50
2. Schalke 24 50
3. Bremen 24 43
4. Stuttgart 24 42
5. Hertha 24 40
8. Wolfsburg 24 34

Saturday, March 05, 2005 

River Plate 1-0 Nacional (Copa Libertadores)

RIVER PLATE: Franco Costanzo; Carlos Diogo, Horacio Ameli, Eduardo Tuzzio, Federico Domínguez (Lucas Mareque, 67'); Luis González, Javier Mascherano, Víctor Zapata; Marcelo Gallardo (Frederico Almerares, 76'); José Sand (Gastón Fernandéz, 72'), Ernesto Farías

NACIONAL: Sebastián Viera; Mauricio Victorino, Carlos Valdez, Diego Jaume, Daniel Leites; Fabián Coelho, Fernando Machado, Oscar Morales, Gonzalo Castro; Martín Ligüera (Alexander Medina, 75'), Sebastián Abreu

GOALS: 1-0 Gallardo (5')


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