RSS
 Add News     Print  
Article List
Atletico’s Diego Costa (right), has his shot on goal blocked by Chelsea’s Gary Cahill during the Champions League semifinal second leg soccer match between Chelsea and Atletico Madrid at Stamford Bridge stadium
Atletico set up Real final Chelsea overpowered

LONDON, April 30, (Agencies): Atletico Madrid produced an inspired display of counter-attacking football to beat Chelsea 3-1 in the Champions League semi-final second leg on Wednesday and set up an all-Spanish final against city rivals Real. Goals from Adrian Lopez, a penalty from Diego Costa and Arda Turan gave Atletico a 3-1 aggregate victory after last week’s goalless draw in Madrid and put them into the final of Europe’s elite competition for the first time since 1974. Chelsea took the lead after 36 minutes when former Atletico favourite Fernando Torres scored with a deflected shot, but the goal inspired the La Liga leaders who will meet their neighbours in the first European final to feature two clubs from the same city in Lisbon on May 24. Chelsea midfielder Willian started the move that led to the opening goal and turned his marker wide on the right before Cesar Azpilicueta, playing in an unfamiliar midfield role, set up the chance for Torres who clipped the ball home via a deflection off Mario Suarez.

Atletico took advantage of poor Chelsea defending for the equaliser a minute before halftime when the home team failed to clear a floated cross from Thiago to the unmarked Juanfran who stole in at the far post. He crossed for Adrian Lopez whose shot bounced down on its way into the net in the 44th minute. Veteran Chelsea goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer rolled back the years in the second minute of the second half with a stunning two-handed reflex save from Turan who took advantage of more poor defending to rifle in a blistering angled shot. Atletico, who held the away goal advantage with the score at 1-1, refused to sit back and were rewarded after an hour when Samuel Eto’o, who had replaced Ashley Cole, fouled Diego Costa to concede a penalty. Diego Costa blasted the ball past Schwarzer to make it 2-1 before Turan sealed a glorious victory with the third goal as Chelsea collapsed at the back. David Luiz hit the post for Chelsea but they were totally outplayed in the second half and Atletico ran out deserved winners.

Meanwhile, Premier League title contenders Manchester City and Ligue 1 leaders Paris Saint-Germain are among a clutch of clubs set to be punished this week for failing to comply with UEFA’s financial fair play (FFP) rules. UEFA’s financial control board (CFCB) is meeting on Thursday and Friday to examine the sanction packages for City and PSG and the other culprits. European football’s governing body is expected to impose heavy fines, and a wage cap on the squads to appear in next season’s Champions League. The sanctions packages are understood to be part of a settlement offer to the clubs, which they can accept, reject or try to negotiate ahead of the meeting.

Both City and UEFA have refused to comment but it is understood the relevant sanction in the FFP rules set to be applied is: “Restriction on the number of players that a club may register for participation in UEFA competitions, including a financial limit on the overall aggregate cost of the employee benefits expenses of players registered on the A-list for the purposes of UEFA club competitions.” The idea of the sanctions is that a restriction in the expenditure on players by both clubs who have breached the rules will help them in their efforts to comply with the limits on losses in future seasons. Clubs can lose up to 45 million euros (£37million) over the last two years under UEFA’s rules.

City accumulated deficits of £97.9million in 2012 and £51.6million last year, but were able to write off some sums spent on facilities, youth development and a number of other items. Both Qatari-owned PSG and Abu Dhabi-owned City have a number of sponsorship deals related to their owners which the CFCB had to determine were of fair market value. PSG effectively wiped out its annual losses of 130 million euros (£107.4million) by announcing a back-dated sponsorship deal with the Qatar Tourism Authority worth up to 200 million euros a year. UEFA president Michel Platini has already said he expects none of the clubs involved, believed to number around 20, will be barred from European competition next season.

Read By: 1794
Comments: 0
Rated:

Comments
You must login to add comments ...
About Us   |   RSS   |   Contact Us   |   Feedback   |   Advertise With Us