UEFA Champions League

February 17, 2010


FC Porto

2 - 1


UEFA Champions League

19:45 +00:00, February 17, 2010

Estadio do Dragao, Portugal

Referee: Martin Hansson

  • 93'

    Sol Campbell and Lukasz Fabianski will make the headlines and they gifted the goals to Porto, but Fabianski will be the one splashed across the papers tomorrow. Almunia will surely be back for the return leg.

  • 93'

    And that's it! 2-1 to Porto. Arsenal must win at home to make it through.

  • 92'

    Eboue swings it in again, but that goes too far for the diving Walcott.

  • 91'

    But Rolando nicks it away from him at the last minute. That was a great chance, but top defending!

  • 91'

    Eboue does really well to get the ball across the box. Fabregas is there...

  • 90'

    Gonzalez and Clichy tangle in the Arsenal box, but nothing comes of it.

  • 90'

    As much as there has been some good attacking play in this game, there have been some real poor touches as well. Arsenal guilty of most of them.

  • 89'

    Walcott shows his pace down the left. Really good touch, and sprints clear. Forces a corner and once again it is a terrible corner from Fabregas.

  • 87'

    Campbell uses his strength to get the better of Falcao. He's had better days at the office too..

  • 87'

    Nasri now making way for Eboue. He has been poor in the past 20 mins and looks very tired as he comes off.

  • 86'

    Neither side can get hold of the ball now. Arsenal look the more desperate though.

  • 85'

    Another terrible ball in the Arsenal midfield - this time from Nasri. Their passing game has gone to pieces.

  • 84'

    Micael makes way for Belluschi, and hobbles off down the tunnel.

  • 83'

    Diaby gives it away, and Porto break (that has happened a lot so far this match). Arsenal do manage to get it back, only for Fernando to pick up a booking for taking out Fabregas.

  • 82'

    Vela on, as Bendtner comes off.

  • 81'

    Costa smashes it first time after the ball was cleared from the corner. Well blocked though.

  • 80'

    Hulk is subbed off, with Gonzalez on.

  • 80'

    Nasri tackles back, but Porto force a corner and they are going for it now with both centre-backs up.

  • 78'

    Denilson gives the ball away and Fucile is allowed to break. Vermaelen and Campbell combine to get it clear after Hulk tried to get himself a penalty.

  • 77'

    Falcao almost nutmegged Campbell in the box, but he closed his legs just in time.

  • 76'

    Walcott is hauled down off the ball and Diaby wastes it once more. Pereira is booked for his foul on Walcott, but it was of little help to Arsenal as the attack had already broken down.

  • 75'

    Lovely ball over the top from Nasri, but Pereira muscles Fabregas out before he can control it.

  • 74'

    Micael and Pereira are doing well down the Porto left. Walcott is having to track back, but there's room to exploit if he can get his motor running.

  • 73'

    Silvestre and Eboue are warming up.. Sol may be off soon.

  • 72'

    Rolando clear acrobatically, and Porto are under a bit of pressure now. Arsenal really do need another goal, although a 1-0 win in the second leg would still take them through.

  • 71'

    Fabregas' deliveries from corners have been awful, except for the goal. Once again, it flies high and deep to the far post.

  • 70'

    Porto doing really well to get men back and frustrate the Gunners. They'll fancy a run on the counter attack too.

  • 69'

    Walcott gets the ball and runs at his man. Fernando comes across, eases him out of it and Porto snap up possession once more.

  • 68'

    Varela gets the better of Sagna once again, who is having a torrid time.

  • 67'

    Meireles is off for Porto and Costa is on.

  • 67'

    Walcott enters the fray now. He's not been in good form recently, so could use a boost.

  • 65'

    Diaby should have done better on the edge of the box with a shot that is blocked by Alves. He had time, but should have released his shot a lot earlier and allowed Porto to close him down.

  • 64'

    Fucile and Fabregas go head to head. They had a bit of a to-do earlier and now Fucile is booked for going through the back of Fabregas.

  • 63'

    Sagna and Rosicky look like they've never met before. Once again, they lose possession and Porto waste it when they had a break on.

  • 62'

    Hulk is causing a lot of problems up front with his power and Meireles gets a bit of space to hit a left footed howitzer. Fabianski claims it on the near post.

  • 61'

    Wasted again by the Gunners as Denilson feeds Fabregas, who overruns it in the box and loses possession.

  • 60'

    Fabregas finds himself in the hole again, but there's not much pace from Nasri or Rosicky on the flanks and the attack breaks down.

  • 59'

    Fabregas has a go now, a little ambitious given how far out he was.

  • 58'

    Porto have a chance as Campbell is turned inside out by Hulk. Good positioning from Fabianski and it's just nice to see him claim it to his chest. This is a night that could ruin his young career.

  • 56'

    Bendtner now heads over again after rising high from a Fabregas free-kick. He's managed to get his head on a few, but they usually lack direction.

  • 55'

    In terms of chances since the second howler, we've not seen much. But Porto are enjoying a bit of possession at the moment and are getting men behind the ball when Arsenal have it.

  • 54'

    Great skill from Meireles, he's taken down by Denilson, but no foul. Odd one, as Arsenal stopped there.

  • 54'

    Nasri bumps shoulders with Meireles and they'll need more than that.

  • 53'

    Porto can kill off the game now if they take advantage of this. The Porto crowd are right behind their side now and Arsenal's heads are down.

  • 52'

    Oh dear. How do Arsenal pick themselves up now?

  • 51'

    Arsenal just went to sleep. Campbell wasn't watching and nobody considered what may happen. Another shocking piece of defending. Pure comedy.

  • 51'

    What an absolute mess. It was perfectly fair, but Arsene Wenger is screaming at the ref!

  • 51'

    Porto take it quickly. And Falcao slots it home into an empty net.

  • 51'


  • 51'

    More confusion for Arsenal. As Fabianski penalised for picking up the ball from Campbell's backpass.

  • 50'

    Penalty shout, as Rosicky goes down under the tackle from Periera. He had beaten the full-back for pace and went to cross, before Periera's leg tangled together. No spot-kick though.

  • 49'

    Now Porto break and Sagna and Campbell manage to crush the attack. They really looked open though and Porto should have done a lot better.

  • 48'

    Bendtner and Sagna have words after a bit of miscommunication. The Gunners are controlling possession though and Fabregas especially looks dangerous.

  • 47'

    Bendter has so much room to turn, but he looks scared as soon as he gets a sight of goal. Really poor finish and he's not impressed up front thus far.

  • 47'

    Campbell wins the header, but it flies high and over the bar.

  • 46'

    Arsenal pressing well at the start here, Denilson is now fouled and there's a few tackles going in already.

  • 45'

    Fabregas immediately gets on the ball, twists and turns, but fails to break through.

  • 45'

    Second half starts..

  • 45'

    First-half ends, but not on a nice note. Fabregas is not a happy man, but Arsenal have played well and will be happy enough with the away goal.

  • 45'

    Wenger is out in his technical area and looks unhappy. Micael and Fabregas are having words and there's a bit of niggle now.

  • 44'

    Fabregas is fouled again after Diaby robs Hulk at the other ends. Pereira the guilty man now.

  • 44'

    Both sides just lacking something in the final third and Fabianski will be happy he's only been tested once since his horror show.

  • 43'

    The half is petering out now. A great attacking first 20 mins, but nothing of note for a bit now.

  • 42'

    Rosicky almost slips it through with the outside of his foot, but Alves comes across to claim it.

  • 40'

    Rosicky is getting space as well and slips it to Bendter, who just knocks it out of play. Very poor.

  • 39'

    Denilson and Sagna combine well to stop Hulk going. The Brazilian is breaking up the play well, but needs to pass it better if Arsenal are to get another goal.

  • 38'

    Campbell sheilds the ball well and goes down under Meireles' pressure. Fabianski claims it though.

  • 37'

    Diaby is pushing up, almost as a second striker to provide some height. I think both sides will be happy if it ends up 1-1 at half-time though.

  • 37'

    Ouch, Fabregas is getting some rough treatment and is hit hard by Fernando.

  • 36'

    Poor from Fernando as he gives the ball away, but Arsenal can't capitalise.

  • 35'

    Nasri whips the ball in and Bendtner rises, he does really well to get a head on it and Helton tips over.

  • 35'

    Fabregas is hauled down by Fucile. Nasri standing over him and there's a few words exchanged.

  • 34'

    Varela has a touch of Nani about him, but with more end product by the looks of things. He's been Porto's best hope so far and is tormenting both Arsenal full-backs.

  • 33'

    Bruno Alves now picks up a booking. Either for handball, or for kicking the ball away after the decision was made.

  • 32'

    The game has closed up a bit now. Both sides are getting their players back and tightening up.

  • 31'

    Fabianski rises high to pluck the ball out of the air and that will make him feel better about everything as well.

  • 30'

    Diaby takes out Varela. He was tracking back to fill Nasri's space, but picks up a booking.

  • 29'

    Good feet from Hulk, but Vermaelen does really well to get his foot on the ball. Arsenal can break and probe the Porto defence with a few short passes. Denilson loses it, and we're back to square one.

  • 28'

    The 'keeper will feel a lot better about that. But would still like it if Arsenal were able to pick up the win.

  • 27'

    Micael gets hold of it after the ball breaks and hammers a shot towards goal. Fabianski gets a firm pair of gloves behind the shot and palms it away. Confidence booster there.

  • 27'

    Still a cracking game. Arsenal look vulnerable on the counter, but then so do Porto.

  • 26'

    Vermaelen miscues a defensive header. Thank goodness for Clichy, otherwise Campbell would have been caught short there as Falcao chased it down.

  • 25'

    Nasri almost wriggles away from his markers, but Porto are back in numbers are able to control the ball.

  • 24'

    Great work from Sagna against Pereira, wins a goal-kick after he had been beaten for pace.

  • 23'

    Hulk hits his shot across the face of goal. Fabianski watches it fly wide.

  • 22'

    This is real end to end stuff. Vermaelen brings down Falcao and there's another free-kick chance. If only David Beckham was playing in this game...

  • 21'

    Varela has been credited with the Fabianski goal, not sure why though as it was never going in.

  • 21'

    Poor corner though. Too far, and Rosicky's aerial prowess can't be used twice.

  • 20'

    Rosicky with some space and he hits a shot at the far post, Helton dives across and palms it round.

  • 20'

    27m out and it's Fabregas... but straight into the wall.

  • 19'

    Now Fabregas is down after a tackle from Fernado and have a chance from a free-kick.

  • 18'

    Incredible stuff. Campbell was uncontested there and the Gunners have a crucial away goal.

  • 18'

    And it's Sol Campbell. The ball is flicked on, Rosicky at the far post heads it back and Campbell is there to head home from a yard out! 1-1.

  • 18'


  • 17'

    Bendtner gets the ball from Rosicky and hits a fierce shot. It takes the smallest of deflections and goes over for a corner.

  • 16'

    Fabianski looks ready to come for it, but it's headed clear from him. He'll need to get a few touches to get that confidence back.

  • 15'

    Varela is on the other side now, popping up on the left to cross. Diaby and Denilson aren't closing their men down and Sagna is now called up for a foul, right outside the box.

  • 14'

    Nasri works the ball really well and turns Fucile inside out. But his shot is blocked and, once again, a good position is wasted.

  • 14'

    Bendtner bends the ball in, but Rolando is there to clear it from inside his own six-yard box.

  • 13'

    Rosicky running at the defence and almost slips in Fabregas. The Spaniard is getting some freedom, but the Gunners can't get him the ball at the moment.

  • 12'

    Arsenal without the ball, and Porto are doing well to keep them off their stride.

  • 11'

    How does he, and Arsenal respond? Clichy is caught out again by Varela who has the run of the right side.

  • 11'

    Wenger talked him up before the game, but that is a shocking error at this level. No-one was anywhere near him.

  • 10'

    An awful error by the Pole. Almunia scored an own goal against Man Utd, and now his deputy does it again. Porto are 1-0 up.

  • 10'

    Varela down the right smashes a cross in, but Fabianski palms it into the net.

  • 10'


  • 10'

    Poor play from the Gunners though, if they keep giving the ball away then the defence will be exposed.

  • 9'

    Rosicky with a loose ball, Hulk is away and ahead of Sagna. He runs all the way into the box and crashes into Campbell. No foul though, he was already on his way down.

  • 8'

    30m out and it's Bruno Alves. Great effort, but Fabianski caught it easily. Not bad for a centre-back though.

  • 8'

    Falcao is cleaned out by Vermaelen. That was careless and it's a good position for a free-kick...

  • 7'

    Bendtner spreads the play really well, but the cross is dealt with by Bruno at the back. He's having a good game so far.

  • 6'

    Diaby controls the ball well on the edge of the box and feeds Nasri. It's a tame shot though, he was closed down well but would expect to do better from there.

  • 6'

    Could be a lot of goals in this one if the defending continues like this.

  • 5'

    Good tackle by Nasri and he bursts forward with the ball, slips it sideways to Fabregas, but Bruno Alves is there to muscle him out of it.

  • 4'

    Arsenal not able to keep the ball, Clichy and Nasri are getting ripped apart by Fucile and Varela and the cross comes in, but claimed by Fabianski.

  • 3'

    Hulk also looks off the pace with that shot. He really should have done better than that.

  • 3'

    One great tackle from Sol, but he looks off the pace already.

  • 2'

    Arsenal are all over the place. Down the right by Varela and the ball comes back to Hulk, who smashes it wide.

  • 2'

    Campbell exposed for pace there, Falcao bursts away but what a recovery tackle! The ball is blocked by Vermaelen as the shot comes in from the rebound.

  • 1'

    Pereira really wasted that. Tried to play it long, but it sailed out for a goal-kick at the other end.

  • 1'

    Helton smashes a clearance into Rosicky and the ball goes out for a goal-kick.

  • 1'

    Campbell gives the ball away with his first touch.. but Arsenal get it back and force Porto back.


    Kick-off. Here we go...


    Hulk will be raring to go, as he's not played since December. Man Utd were looking at him recently, but Arsenal fans will hope he keeps his rage well under control. You really don't want to make him angry!


    All eyes will be on Mr Campbell in the centre of defence as well. Keep a look out for our own Harry Harris' report on his progress at the end of the game.


    The Dragao is a little louder than the Emirates though...


    Somewhat surprisingly, Porto are 9 points off the pace in their domestic league, so both sides are quite similar in that they are chasing the pack at home.


    The big danger for the Gunners could be in goal. How will young Pole Fabianski feel about such a big game? Maybe he's better than Almunia at the moment anyway.


    Others to watch out for in the Porto side. Portugal internationals Raul Meireles and defender Bruno Alves.


    Porto have Hulk back. He's been missing as he awaits a charge over hitting a steward, but he can play in Europe, so he starts up front with the dangerous Falcao.


    No Alex Song, no Arshavin, Eduardo, or William Gallas. But there's a decent looking attack with Nasri and Rosicky supporting Bendtner.


    Arsenal have never won in Portugal, so the signs aren't great. But having Fabregas and Diaby in midfield is a boost.


    First things first, Sol Campbell starts his first game in the UCL since the 2006 final disappointment against Barcelona, even though he scored.


    Welcome one and all, as Arsenal face a tough test to overcome Porto at the Dragao without a few of their big names.


    Join us at 1945 GMT to see if Arsenal's injury-hit squad can come up with a win at FC Porto.