Football

Atletico beats Porto to dump it out of Champions

MADRID (AP) — Atletico Madrid denied FC Porto a chance to reach the last 16 of the Champions League with a 2-0 victory to close out Group G on Wednesday.

Raul Garcia turned to score a tight-angled volley in the 14th minute before Diego Costa scored his 19th goal of the season in the 37th for unbeaten Atletico to finish top of the standings with 16 points.

Porto hit the woodwork several times and will rue a 28th-minute missed penalty by Josue. Porto, a two-time European champion, finished third behind Zenit St. Petersburg and will now play in the Europa League.

Atletico can take a measure of satisfaction from the win after Porto dumped it into the Europa League during the 2009/10 season on the last matchday. Porto took the game to the hosts at the Vicente Calderon Stadium, with Jackson Martinez the focal point of the attack while Manchester United manager David Moyes watched on from the stands.

Danilo's eight-minute cross into the box found Martinez's foot but the Colombia striker guided it high off the crossbar. Garcia scored against the run of play with a daring half-volley as he touched the ball inside toward the goal line before swiveling to fire a shot past goalkeeper Helton into the near corner with almost no angle.

Silvestre Varela then headed off the crossbar before Martinez was brought down by Aranzubia to set up the penalty, which was saved by the backup goalie who was filling in for injured regular Thibaut Courtois.

Martinez sent Varela's short pass off the outside of the post just before Atletico struck for the second against the run of play. Oliver Torres sprung Costa with a long pass that the Atletico striker headed down past Helton, and he curled in from angle to keep adding to his goalscoring tally.

The Portuguese champions hit the post for the last time in the 69th as Lima beat the offside trap but saw his quick shot come off the near post. Porto would have advanced to the last 16 with a victory since Zenit lost 4-1 at previously winless Austria Vienna.

Related Headlines

  • Diego Costa, Sidnei

    5 things to know about Group G

    Here are five things to know ahead of Tuesday's Group G matches in the Champions League: ___ BIG SCARE FOR ATLETICO MADRID The sight of striker Diego Costa emerging from the ... 

  • Atletico eyes Champs semifinals at Barca expense

    Atletico Madrid is on the cusp of reaching the semifinals of Europe's top-tier competition for the first time in 40 years as it welcomes Barcelona to its Vicente Calderon ... 

  • Cristiano Ronaldo,  Mario Suarez

    Madrid beats Atletico to reach Copa del Rey final

    Cristiano Ronaldo helped Real Madrid reach its third Copa del Rey final in four seasons with a 2-0 win over Atletico Madrid on Tuesday and a 5-0 victory on aggregate. 

  • Diego Costa  , Ricardo Costa

    Atletico draws 1-1 at Valencia in Copa del Rey

    Atletico Madrid drew 1-1 at Valencia on Tuesday to claim an away-goal advantage in the last 16 of the Copa del Rey, just days before its key Spanish league clash against ...