Porto crush Leicester to ease into last 16

Kuwait Times - - SPORTS -

PORTO: Porto eased into the Cham­pi­ons League knock­out stages with an em­bar­rass­ingly sim­ple 5-0 win over Leicester City’s hap­less sec­ond-string side in the Es­ta­dio do Dra­gao yesters­day.

With their qual­i­fi­ca­tion as Group G vic­tors as­sured, the English cham­pi­ons rested key play­ers, leav­ing their Por­tuguese hosts to cash in hun­grily with a dou­ble from An­dre Silva and fine strikes from Je­sus Corona, Yacine Brahimi and Diogo Jota.

Leicester had only con­ceded one goal in their pre­vi­ously un­beaten first Cham­pi­ons League cam­paign but shipped three in 45 min­utes with Silva start­ing the rout by head­ing home un­chal­lenged from Corona’s cor­ner af­ter six min­utes.

One-way traf­fic and two bril­liant goals en­sued, Corona’s mag­nif­i­cent first-time vol­ley from Alex Telles’ cross in the 25th minute be­ing fol­lowed by Brahimi’s cheeky back­heel fin­ish from Maxi Pereira’s de­liv­ery just be­fore half­time.

Af­ter a fairy­tale start to their Euro­pean ad­ven­tures which matched their Pre­mier League hero­ics last sea­son, Leicester, who had left the likes of Riyad Mahrez and Jamie Vardy at home, were sud­denly left with noth­ing but thoughts of dam­age lim­i­ta­tion.

They im­proved markedly but Danny Drinkwa­ter’s 65th-minute foul on Silva al­lowed the striker get up and slot home his fifth Euro­pean goal of the sea­son from the spot be­fore Jota crashed home a fifth.

Even worse for the hope­lessly out­classed vis­i­tors, Drinkwa­ter, one of the few first­team reg­u­lars on duty, limped off with an omi­nous-look­ing in­jury.

With Copen­hagen win­ning at Club Bruges in the other group game, Porto fin­ished two points ahead of the Dan­ish side and two adrift of Leicester.

— AP

PORTO: Porto's An­dre Silva, right, fights for the ball with Leicester's Wes Mor­gan dur­ing a Cham­pi­ons League group G soc­cer match be­tween FC Porto and Leicester City at the Dra­gao sta­dium in Porto, Por­tu­gal yes­ter­day.

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