19 May 2011

Porto win Europa League

4:06 pm on 19 May 2011

Porto deservedly beat Braga 1-0 to win the Europa League after a superb header by Colombian striker Falcao decided the first all-Portuguese final of a European football competition.

Falcao swooped for his 17th goal of the competition just before half-time, timing his run to perfection to meet compatriot Fredy Guarin's precise cross and brilliantly direct a header past Braga keeper Artur.

Braga, the competition's surprise packages who knocked out former European champions Liverpool and Benfica, should have equalised when Mossoro went clean through seconds after halftime, only to shoot straight at the goalkeeper.

However, they did not have enough attacking guile to stop Porto boss Andre Villas Boas emulating the club's greatest coach Jose Mourinho by winning this competition and the domestic league in his first season in charge. He also became the youngest coach to win a European trophy.

Porto cruised to the Portuguese title undefeated and reached this final by knocking out the likes of Spain's Sevilla and Villarreal.

Porto, who lifted the same trophy when the competition was known as the UEFA Cup in 2003, also remain on course for a quadruple haul of trophies this season.