Lopez scores twice as Porto go 11 points clear

January 13, 2008

LISBON, Jan 12 (Reuters) - Lisandro Lopez scored twice in Porto's 4-0 home win over Braga that extended their lead at the top of the Portuguese championship to 11 points after rivals Benfica were held to a 0-0 draw at home by Leixoes on Saturday.

The champions head the standings on 41 points from 16 matches, followed by Benfica on 30. Third-placed Sporting travel to Academica on Sunday with a chance to close the gap on Benfica to one point.

Porto went ahead after five minutes when Argentine striker Lopez tapped in a perfect cross from the right by in-form defender Jose Bosingwa.

His compatriot Lucho Gonzalez set up the second goal with a neat cross which was met with a powerful header from fellow midfielder Raul Meireles after 18 minutes.

Lopez notched his league-leading 13th goal of the season with a shot from just inside the penalty area eight minutes from time before Argentine substitute Ernesto Farias completed the scoring with his first strike for the club.

Benfica were held to a goalless draw at home by struggling Leixoes.

Leixoes wasted two good chances to pick up all three points in the second half when defender Nuno Diogo hit post and midfielder Diogo Valente hit Benfica's crossbar.