Thursday May 5, 2011 Semifinal Finished Estádio Municipal de Braga

Sporting Braga 1 - 0 Benfica

  • Custódio 19’

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  1. Braga edge Benfica to make final

    Braga edge Benfica to make final

    Sporting Braga defeated Benfica 1-0 on the night to win their Europa League semi-final on away goals and reach their first European final. More

  • Live Commentary

    Time:90'
    • Sporting Braga
    • Benfica
    • 90+6' IT'S OVER! BRAGA HAVE MADE THEIR FIRST EUROPEAN FINAL! What a win, what a performance! Porto v Braga at the Aviva in less than two weeks!
    • 90+5' Braga win a free-kick much to the joy of the home fans. Artur shamelessly accepts a yellow for time wasting off the delivery. We're almost over here...
    • 90+4' Braga try another break from all the desperate Benfica attempts to snatch this one, but tired legs mean it doesn't last long. They're still sharp at the back though, and deny the visitors from breaching the penalty area.
    • 90+3' Benfica win a corner, will they send EVERYONE up? It was actually Kardec who was cleared off the line earlier, apologies.
    • 90+2 Braga break from Benfica pressure and Silvio buys a free-kick off Luisao, which earns the defender a yellow card he didn't deserve.
    • 90' We have FIVE MINUTES added time. Are you sure, ref? Braga aren't home and dry yet.
    • 89' It was Cardozo's header denied at the death by Paulao on the line.
    • 88' BRAGA CLEAR ONE OFF THE LINE! Oh my, this is a finale and a half.
    • 87' Meyong off, Helder Barbosa on for Braga.
    • 86' Braga take another short corner, which wins them a long throw. But their attempts to keep it in the corner lead to a goal kick. Meanwhile, Saviola comes off and is replaced by Moreira.
    • 85' Braga play the corner short. And again a short ball. And another. And another... to CUSTODIO! Roberto denies him a second! Great drive, too!
    • 84' HUGO VIANA! Low shot beaten around the post by Roberto!
    • 83' On a sidenote, Alan has been phenomenal tonight. Man of the match by a country mile.
    • 81' Just before the corner, Braga replaced Mossoro with Kaka in a very defensive sub. Meanwhile, following the set-piece, Benfica have taken off Martins for Alan Kardec.
    • 80' Corner's whipped into the far post. And how did Saviola miss that!? I think he suspected himself offside. Replays show he handled it in fact, almost trying to catch it because of his position.
    • 79' GAITAN! Rocket of a shot is turned around the post by Artur!
    • 78' Jardel gives away a free-kick for climbing. Villarreal make it 2-2 in the other semi-final.
    • 77' Coentrao's distance shot is blocked by his team-mate Saviola.
    • 76' Meyong might be in here! He tries to squeeze through the centre-backs, but he's offside anyway.
    • 75' Coentrao has been booked, either for dissent or kicking the ball away.
    • 74' A long ball is sent upfield for Neyong to chase, but his heart's not completely in the pursuit and Roberto catches quite comfortably.
    • 73' Braga sub: Lima off, Cristiano on.
    • 72' Artur once again is receiving treatment after that 50-50. A brave and vital interception by the intrepid goalkeeper.
    • 71' Coentrao has been put through here! Artur's coming out, it's close... Artur just gets his foot in and the ball deflects off both and away! That was a real chance for Benfica.
    • 70' Saviola is caught offside.
    • 69' Cardozo tries to replicate his goal from the first leg from this set piece... but it's nowhere near the target.
    • 68' Custodio leaps over the back of Martins to try and clear a dangerous Benfica play, and that'll be a free-kick 30 yards out, almost dead centre.
    • 67' Mossoro and Alan try to work an approach down the right wing, but the latter loses possession. Benfica are showing an admirable degree of patience in possession even at this stage, refusing to get drawn into panic levels by this superbly organised Braga side.
    • 65' Braga break and Lima feeds Meyong, who goes down rather softly under pressure from a marker. No free kick given, and it's the right call from Mr. Atkinson I feel.
    • 64' Jara is having an impact on this game already. A long punt upfield finds him clean through and somehow onside, but he just can't quite bring the ball down and Artur is able to take it unchallenged.
    • 63' Coentrao has a cross and/or shot attempt blocked on the left-hand edge of the box.
    • 61' Sorry, going to go backwards a bit here to re-iterate that Paulao was indeed booked, actually added the icon this time! That's better.
    • 62' Mossoro embarks on a Messi-like solo run! Great stuff and he bears down on goal, but just can't quite finish the job and the danger is swept away by the away side.
    • 60' And Paulao is also booked for a rough challenge. Sub Jara has a decent effort at goal which sails just over the angle from the short free-kick.
    • 59' Maxi is booked, which means he'll miss the final if Benfica can turn this around.
    • 58' Peixoto makes way for Franco Jara in our first change of the contest.
    • 57' Maxi is penalised for a foul on Alan, though there was absolutely zero contact. It's a dangerous free-kick coming up for Braga, 30-35 yards out just to the left of centre. Lima takes... and powers it well over the bar.
    • 56' Maxi has a dig from distance, and it goes nowhere near the target. Goal kick.
    • 55' Gaitan's cross from the right is punched clear by Artur, who had to dive spectacularly to get down low enough for that! Massive leap of faith to come out for that one.
    • 53' Silvio goes for a shot when he had options, it takes a heavy deflection which allows Roberto to collect with ease.
    • 52' Saviola is coming awfully deep to help build attacking momentum for his team. It's working so far - Benfica are retaining the ball a lot more thanks to his running and hard work.
    • 50' Peixoto picks up a booking for Benfica.
    • 49' Falcao has bagged his 16th goal of the tournament to put Porto 2-1 up at Villarreal. Surely now we are guaranteed an all-Portugese final? Mossoro clips Maxi to concede a free-kick deep in Benfica's half.
    • 48' Maybe not - Saviola has the ball in the box! He can't find enough space and time to unleash a shot and eventually he's crowded off the ball. That was dangerous, though.
    • 47' Benfica have two European cups, countless league titles and domestic cups in their history. Braga have won one trophy - the Portugese cup in 1966. Can they hold on and change all that against Porto?
    • 46' Braga kick-off the second half - they're attacking the rock face end now, and if they can hang onto this result, they'll be in their first ever European final!
    • 45+3' Martin Atkinson finally blows for half-time. We have what should be an interesting and crucial 45 minutes coming up!
    • 45+2' Long ball upfield finds Maxi who is onside, he looks to find Cardozo! Great catch by Artur, inches before Cardozo would have connected!
    • 45+1' One minute became two thanks to treatment for Artur.
    • 45' 1 minute of added time will be played.
    • 44' Luisao clatters Artur trying to meet a Benfica cross shortly after a set piece. Free-kick Braga.
    • 43' Custodio has goal fever, I think. He rushes forward in open play to support Garcia and Alan's work on the right, and thinks he's won a corner... but it hit him last as he slid in and it's a goal kick.
    • 42' Good assist by Cardozo for the near-miss, though he may have been offside slightly if the replays are anything to go by.
    • 41' Hulk has equalised for Porto, making it 6-2 on aggregate. Meanwhile, SAVIOLA HITS THE POST! So close to an equaliser!
    • 40' Braga work another good play on the left, but it comes to an end when they attempt to switch flanks and Coentrao intercepts.
    • 39' Maxi employs a series of Rory Delap-like long throws into the Braga box, but they are all dealt with. 3 or 4 of them before a foul is conceded as players tumble in the box. Goes Braga's way.
    • 38' Handball shout for Benfica, nothing given.
    • 36' Benfica have cut frustrated figures on the pitch thus far. Unable to play at full flow for the most part, though they have threatened to score on occasion. This game's far from over.
    • 35' Alan has got away from two defenders on the right, but they catch up to him and Garcia fouls trying to back his Braga team mate up.
    • 34' Meyong climbs all over Garcia. Free kick visitors.
    • 32' Cross in at the opposite flank by Benfica, Garcia brings it down six yards out! He can't get the shot and nor can Saviola! It's cleared.
    • 31' Braga are looking good since taking the lead, and are giving Coentrao (sorry for previous mis-spells) a torrid time, but Alan fouls the full-back with a bit of overzealousness.
    • 30' Viana fools the crowd in the box with a short cut-back to Silvio! It hobbles just past the far post! Roberto had to be at full stretch just to make sure there!
    • 29' The hosts maintain possession on the right and win a free-kick near the corner flag as Concetrao was holding Alan as he tried to turn his man.
    • 28' Braga win another free-kick, this one in the Benfica half. Viana powers it into the area but it's headed clear.
    • 27' Peixoto leans in with an arm going for an air ball with goalscorer Custodio. Free-kick Braga.
    • 26' Good teamwork between Garcia and Alan on the right win an attacking throw, which Braga work short.
    • 25' A Braga defensive interception bounces high and threatens to lead to yet another corner, but Artur races over, gently handles to keep it in and then collects it once safe inside his box. It was close, but it looked like he used his hands legally at all times.
    • 23' Alan eventually gets that one clear, and Mossoro looks to break but his attempt to play it off his marker for a throw ends up with the decision going Benfica's way, much to his frustration.
    • 22' Concetrao wins another corner for Benfica, which is headed away for one more.
    • 21' A poor kick-out by Artur, but Paulao spares his blushes by fighting off two attackers to get it away for an attacking throw.
    • 20' I say that, but Villarreal have gone a goal up at home to Porto. It's still 5-2 on aggregate, but can they overcome the Portugese dominance in the Europa League against all odds?
    • 19' Braga have nudged Benfica out of the driver's seat in the tie with that goal. They're on their way to meet Porto in Dublin via the away goals rule, if everything remains the same tonight.
    • 18' Meyong appears to be free on the left until Luisao slides in perfectly to concede the corner. Great challenge.... BUT CUSTODIO HEADS IN FROM THE CORNER!
    • 16' Custodio heads the corner clear for another one on the opposite side. Braga JUST clear that one, but Benfica attack again only for their cross to land on the roof of the net. Goal kick.
    • 15' Martins with the cross in from the free-kick... it's going on target! ARTUR TIPS OVER! Benfica corner coming up.
    • 14' Peixoto wins a free-kick on the left from Garcia, which didn't look that convincing, to be honest.
    • 13' Benfica are attacking the 'rock face end' in this first half, by the way.
    • 12' Great run by Saviola down the left wing, but his cross is heavy. Braga maintain the pressure, but eventually take their possession backwards thanks to good pressing by the away side.
    • 11' Braga show good strength in the middle to get it out to Garcia on the right. Good cross to LIMA! Off target, but a good chance and a big sign of intent.
    • 10' Luisao heads the corner towards goal and Cardozo can't quite get a touch on it to steer it past Artur, who collects it safely. Cardozo looked miles offside, anyway...
    • 9' The corner comes to nothing and Benfica regain possession with a throw just past the halfway line. They work it on the left and win their first corner as a result.
    • 8' Lima finds space for a cross from the right, it's a good one and Luisao has to concede a corner with his clearance.
    • 7' Maxi's attempt to burst down the right flank ends when he fails to make sure the ball stays the right side of the touchline. Braga get a throw-in. D'oh!
    • 5' Garcia's cross attempt is blocked out for a Braga attacking throw, which the hosts work backwards.
    • 4' Benfica put together a decent attack of their own, but the final ball is too heavy for Saviola. Silvio is booked for a very real challenge moments before.
    • 3' Replays show there was actually zero contact from that late slide by the Braga player. The last thing we want is a Clasico-like encounter...
    • 2' It's Braga who start bright early on, taking the ball confidently into the visitors' final third on a couple of occasions before conceding a free-kick to lose their momentum.
    • 1' We're underway, Benfica kick us off
    • 20:05 The teams are out at Estadio AXA, and we're moments away from kick-off. Martin Atkinson of England is the match official, complete with an all-English team of assistants.
    • 20:00 Braga have conceded just four goals in seven Europa League knockout stage fixtures this term, half of which went in last week in the first leg at Benfica. If they can keep another clean sheet tonight - as they did against Liverpool twice and Lech Poznan and Dynamo Kiev once - all it will take is one goal for a dream final appearance. Kick-off is five minutes away!
    • 19:55 Neither side have a UEFA Cup, the Europa League's predecessor, in their history though Benfica did make the final in 1983, where they lost to Anderlecht. In fact, the only Portugese UEFA Cup win came 20 years after that final, when Jose Mourinho led probable finalists this year Porto to glory over Celtic in a thrilling final in 2003.
    • 19:50 An interesting sidenote to consider is that with two league games remaining in this campaign, Benfica are locked in for 2nd place behind Porto and ahead of Sporting Lisbon & Braga, who can still edge ahead of SCP for third. Will it be to Benfica's advantage that their sole focus is now this tournament?
    • 19:45 Both Braga and Benfica have made it this far in the Europa League this season without any players making the top ten tournament goalscorers. Barring a miracle, tonight's winners will have to contend with 15-goal Falcao of Porto in the final at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin.
    • 19:40 "We are the best! Forget the rest... VIVA O BENFICA!!! C'mon Benfica, you must win this! Dominarei os leões e os dragões e no céu¬ voarei sobre as asas de uma¬ águia" - Benfica Eagle Power
    • 19:35 Benfica coach Jorge Jesus believes Braga's style is perfect for this crucial semi-final tie. Watch here
    • 19:30 Assuming Porto advance as expected, both teams will have a lot on the line in the final, outside of the chance to lift the Europa League trophy: Benfica are still smarting from a cup semi-final defeat to their table-topping rivals, while relatively unfashionable Braga would gain a lot of credibility from consecutive wins over Portugal’s ‘Big Two’.
    • 19:25 So one change for Benfica with Gaitan coming in for Aimar while it's a double switch for the home side as Vandinho and Salino make way for Custodio and Mossoro.
    • 19:20 TEAMS: Braga: Artur Moraes, Miguel Garcia, Paulao, Rodriguez, Silvio, Custodio, Hugo Viana, Alan, Mossoro, Lima, Meyong. Subs: Cristiano, Kaka, Helder Barbosa, Echiejile, Leandro Salino, Peterson, Anibal. /// Benfica: Roberto, Maxi Pereira, Luisao, Jardel, Fabio Coentrao, Gaitan, Javi Garcia, Cesar Peixoto, Carlos Martins, Saviola, Cardozo. Subs: Moreira, Airton, Jara, Roderick, Felipe Menezes, Sidnei, Alan Kardec.
    • 19:15 It's 2nd vs 4th, though league form will have little bearing tonight. Braga and Benfica traded home wins in the league this season, though the Aguias knocked Braga out of the Portugese Cup, giving them the edge in the head-to-head for the campaign. League standings
    • 19:10 It's been seven days since the first leg of this all-Portugese last four clash, and the Lisbon outfit hold a slight edge after the game at Estadio da Luz. Full report
    • 19:05 Good evening! Eurosport's countdown to LIVE coverage of the Europa League semi-final second leg between Braga and Benfica starts... now!
    • - Welcome to coverage of the Europa League semi-final second leg between Braga and Benfica. Kick-off is at 20:05 UK time so join us then.
  • Summary

    • 88' BRAGA CLEAR ONE OFF THE LINE! Oh my, this is a finale and a half.
    • 85' Braga play the corner short. And again a short ball. And another. And another... to CUSTODIO! Roberto denies him a second! Great drive, too!
    • 84' HUGO VIANA! Low shot beaten around the post by Roberto!
    • 80' Corner's whipped into the far post. And how did Saviola miss that!? I think he suspected himself offside. Replays show he handled it in fact, almost trying to catch it because of his position.
    • 79' GAITAN! Rocket of a shot is turned around the post by Artur!
    • 71' Coentrao has been put through here! Artur's coming out, it's close... Artur just gets his foot in and the ball deflects off both and away! That was a real chance for Benfica.
    • 62' Mossoro embarks on a Messi-like solo run! Great stuff and he bears down on goal, but just can't quite finish the job and the danger is swept away by the away side.
    • 48' Maybe not - Saviola has the ball in the box! He can't find enough space and time to unleash a shot and eventually he's crowded off the ball. That was dangerous, though.
    • 45+2' Long ball upfield finds Maxi who is onside, he looks to find Cardozo! Great catch by Artur, inches before Cardozo would have connected!
    • 41' Hulk has equalised for Porto, making it 6-2 on aggregate. Meanwhile, SAVIOLA HITS THE POST! So close to an equaliser!
    • 30' Viana fools the crowd in the box with a short cut-back to Silvio! It hobbles just past the far post! Roberto had to be at full stretch just to make sure there!
    • 18' Meyong appears to be free on the left until Luisao slides in perfectly to concede the corner. Great challenge.... BUT CUSTODIO HEADS IN FROM THE CORNER!
    • 15' Martins with the cross in from the free-kick... it's going on target! ARTUR TIPS OVER! Benfica corner coming up.
    • 11' Braga show good strength in the middle to get it out to Garcia on the right. Good cross to LIMA! Off target, but a good chance and a big sign of intent.
    • 19:20 TEAMS: Braga: Artur Moraes, Miguel Garcia, Paulao, Rodriguez, Silvio, Custodio, Hugo Viana, Alan, Mossoro, Lima, Meyong. Subs: Cristiano, Kaka, Helder Barbosa, Echiejile, Leandro Salino, Peterson, Anibal. /// Benfica: Roberto, Maxi Pereira, Luisao, Jardel, Fabio Coentrao, Gaitan, Javi Garcia, Cesar Peixoto, Carlos Martins, Saviola, Cardozo. Subs: Moreira, Airton, Jara, Roderick, Felipe Menezes, Sidnei, Alan Kardec.

Team Line-up & Ratings

  • Sporting Braga

    Manager: Domingos

  • Benfica

    Manager: Jorge Jesus

  • Line-up

    Live Team Line-Up

    • Starting line-up

      • Artur Yellow Card
      • M. Garcia
      • Paulão Yellow Card
      • A. Rodriguez
      • Sílvio Yellow Card
      • Custódio Goal
      • H. Viana
      • M. Mossoró Substitution Out (80′)
      • Alan
      • Lima Substitution Out (73′)
      • Meyong Substitution Out (87′)

      Subs

      • Elderson
      • L. Salino Substitution In73′
      • H. Barbosa Substitution In87′
      • Aníbal
      • Kaká Substitution In80′
      • J. Peterson
      • C. Figueiredo
    • Starting line-up

      • Roberto
      • M. Pereira Yellow Card
      • Luisão Yellow Card
      • Jardel
      • F. Coentrão Yellow Card
      • Javi Garcia
      • N. Gaitán
      • C. Peixoto Yellow Card Substitution Out (58′)
      • C. Martins Substitution Out (81′)
      • J. Saviola Substitution Out (87′)
      • O. Cardozo

      Subs

      • F. Jara Substitution In58′
      • Felipe Menezes Substitution In87′
      • Airton
      • Alan Kardec Substitution In81′
      • Moreira
      • Sidnei
      • R. Miranda
  • Rate Players

    Rate Players

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    • Player Y! Users Expert My Rating
      Goalkeeper
      Yellow Card - -
      Defenders
      - -
      Yellow Card - -
      - -
      Yellow Card - -
      Midfielders
      Goal - -
      - -
      Substitution Out80′ - -
      Strikers
      - -
      Substitution Out73′ - -
      Substitution Out87′ - -
      Subs
      Substitution In73′ - -
      Substitution In87′ - -
      Substitution In80′ - -
    • Player Y! Users Expert My Rating
      Goalkeeper
      - -
      Defenders
      Yellow Card - -
      Yellow Card - -
      - -
      Yellow Card - -
      Midfielders
      - -
      - -
      Yellow Card Substitution Out58′ - -
      Substitution Out81′ - -
      Strikers
      Substitution Out87′ - -
      - -
      Subs
      Substitution In58′ - -
      Substitution In87′ - -
      Substitution In81′ - -

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