Fancy footwork boots PSG to victory

21st October 2004, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Oct 20 (AFP) - Paris Saint Germain's misfiring Champions League campaign finally got off the ground with a stunning acrobatic strike from Charles-Edouard Coridon inspiring them to a 2-0 win over titleholders FC Porto.

 

PARIS, Oct 20 (AFP) - Paris Saint Germain's misfiring Champions League campaign finally got off the ground with a stunning acrobatic strike from Charles-Edouard Coridon inspiring them to a 2-0 win over titleholders FC Porto.

Porto were favourites to take the honours after PSG had failed to score a single goal let along pick up a point from their first two games.

But by the end the reigning champions had slumped to bottom of group H as Coridon conjured up a goal out of thin air on the half hour mark to end PSG's Champions League goal drought.

The 31-year-old, who moved to the French capital from Lens in September, picked up Jorge Costa's floating cross from the right and spectacularly side flicked the ball over his head, catching Porto keeper Vitor Baia and the fans in the Parc des Princes completely unawares.

Inspired by that effort Pauleta, back from injury, increased PSG's lead seconds later.

Reinaldo on the right wing ran on to the Azores-born Portuguese international's path, the Brazilian flicking the ball back with a low cross for Pauleta to slot past Baia.

The lightning double strike will have helped lift the sense of foreboding in the PSG camp as they struggle to pick themselves up after their worst domestic start in 20 years.

PSG's margin of superiority was by no means reflective of the balance of power at half time as Porto's forwards failed to capitalise on lengthy periods of possession.

South African Benni McCarthy went very close to pulling one back four minutes from the break but his effort from the left was palmed away by Lionel Letizi.

That was the Portuguese side's best opportunity of the night as they failed to break down the stout home defence.

Coach Vahid Halihodzic had described this as PSG's last chance after defeats to Chelsea and CSKA Moscow, and they manfully answered his battle cry.

But for the sitting champions this defeat leaves them with a desperate struggle if they are to avoid the dubious honour of becoming the first team to win the Champions League one year and fail to make it past the group stages the next.

Victor Fernandez, Jose Mourinho's successor as Porto coach, shrugged: "We lost our concentration for a minute and it cost us two goals.

"We played to a certain level in the second period - that's the one positive to take from tonight.

"But the most important thing is to qualify, which means the next two home matches, particularly the one against PSG, will be decisive."

He added: "PSG didn't play like they've done in their two previous games - the speed of their attack was a world apart from how they played against Chelsea."

© AFP

Subject: French News

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