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Liedson leads Sporting revival

Wednesday, 16 February 2005

By Rui Matos Pereira at the Estádio José Alvalade

[1] Sporting Clube de Portugal recovered from conceding an early goal to take a 2-1 advantage into the second leg of their UEFA Cup Round of 32 tie with Feyenoord.

Sporting fightback

[2] After going behind to a goal from Bart Goor on eleven minutes, Sporting fought back thanks to efforts from midfield player Custódio and Liedson to gain the upper hand in Lisbon - and they held on despite Custódio's second-half dismissal.

Goor stunner

[3] Sporting started well, with on-loan midfield player Hugo Viana hitting a first-time, right-foot shot against Patrick Lodewijks's crossbar, but with eleven minutes on the clock it was Feyenoord who took the lead. Right-back Gianni Zuiverloon hit a low shot, which was cleared into the path of Goor, who curled a shot from eleven metres past Portuguese international goalkeeper Ricardo.

Sporting level

[4] Sporting, who struggled to settle after the early goal, gradually worked their way back into the game with quick passing moves between their more creative and technically gifted players and it was following one of those moves that José Peseiro's men levelled the match. With 22 minutes played, Viana skipped past Goor before crossing for Custódio to fire in unmarked from nine metres.

Home pressure

[5] Sporting pressed forward looking for another goal and, on 32 minutes, Custódio shot from just outside the box forcing Lodewijks to palm around the post. The pressure brought a second goal four minutes later, though, as Pinto supplied a pinpoint cross to an unmarked Liedson, who rose higher than Zuiverloon to head past Lodewijks.

Kalou change

[6] At the break Feyenoord coach Ruud Gullit introduced Salomon Kalou to try and improve their attacking options. However, Feyenoord's best effort on goal in the second half came in the 59th minute, courtesy of Goor, but the Belgian's drive from distance was excellently saved by Ricardo.

Lodewijks saves

[7] Five minutes earlier, Sporting had forced Lodewijks into consecutive stops from a 30-metre Fabio Rochemback free-kick and a Pinto effort which the Feyenoord keeper magnificently parried stretching to his left.

Custódio off

[8] With 26 minutes to go Sporting were reduced to ten men after Custódio was sent off for a second bookable offence - pulling Dirk Kuijt when the Dutch striker was through on goal. But even with that disadvantage, it was Sporting who threatened most, Viana sending a 35-metre set-piece narrowly wide.

Last chance

[9] Feyenoord increased the pressure on the Sporting defence in the closing moments and, after a Kuijt shot had been deflected for a corner by João Moutinho, Kalou beat the offside trap only to head into Ricardo's hands.

Coach dismissed

[10] With five minutes remaining, Sporting suffered another setback when coach Peseiro was banished from the technical area after an altercation with the assistant referee. But on the pitch his team held on thanks to Ricardo, who kept out Kuijt's late, close-range header with his knees.

Sporting goalscorer Liedson (right) holds off Cory Gibbs