Historic Uefa Cup triumph for CSKA

Sporting Lisbon 1, CSKA Moscow 3
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The Independent Online

CSKA Moscow made Russian football history last night when they beat Sporting Lisbon 3-1 in the Uefa Cup final.

CSKA Moscow made Russian football history last night when they beat Sporting Lisbon 3-1 in the Uefa Cup final.

What promised to be a Portuguese party in Sporting's own Jose Alvalade stadium turned sour as three goals in 18 second-half minutes from Alexei Berezutsky, Yuri Zhirkov and Vagner Love made CSKA the first Russian winners of a European club competition.

The atmosphere was anything but neutral for this final as the noise from the small pocket of CSKA supporters was drowned out by the hordes of home fans clad in green and white.

Sporting almost increased the din further inside the opening minute when Fabio Rochemback's shot took a wicked deflection and drifted just wide.

They took the lead in the 29th minute when Daniel Carvalho lost possession on the edge of his own area and Rogerio curled the ball into the top right-hand corner. CSKA should have been level at half-time, however, as Ivica Olic's cross found the hitherto anonymous Vagner Love in front of goal only for the Brazilian to scuff his shot horribly wide.

Love almost redeemed himself for his earlier profligacy after the break with a volley which flew inches wide of Ricardo's post.

It was a sign of things to come as CSKA drew level after 56 minutes. Carvalho's ball into the box was nodded in by Alexei Berezutsky.

CSKA moved in front after 65 minutes. Carvalho was again the provider with a neat through ball which was perfect for Zhirkov to run onto and score.

Liedson squandered a chance to equalise for Sporting and seconds later Love finished off a swift CSKA counter-attack to reduce the home fans to silence.

Sporting Lisbon (4-4-2): Ricardo; Rogerio (Douala, 80), Beto, Enakarhire, Miguel Garcia; Pedro Barbosa, Joao Moutinho (Viana, 88 ), Rochemback, Rodrigo Tello; Liedson, Sa Pinto (Niculae, 72). Substitutes not used: Nelson, Custodio, Anderson Polga, Rui Jorge.

CSKA Moscow (3-5-2): Akinfeev; Alexei Berezutsky, Ignashevich, Vasili Berezutsky; Odiah, Aldonin (Gusev, 86), Daniel Carvalho (Semberas, 82), Rahimic, Zhirkov; Vagner Love, Olic (Krasic, 67). Substitutes not used: Mandrykin, Salougin, Laizans, Ferreyra.

Referee: G Poll (England).

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