Salah on target as Liverpool trio break Porto hearts in Valentine’s Day massacre

Liverpool's Egyptian star Mohamed Salah celebrates with hat trick hero Sadio Mane in Porto. (AFP)
Updated 15 February 2018
0

Salah on target as Liverpool trio break Porto hearts in Valentine’s Day massacre

PORTO, PORTUGAL: Liverpool put one foot in the Champions League quarterfinals with a 5-0 away rout of Porto in the first leg of their last-16 match on Wednesday.
Sadio Mane scored a hat trick and Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino provided the other two goals to give the Premier League side a huge advantage ahead of the second leg at Anfield on March 6.
“It was hard work, but in the end the boys enjoyed it,” Liverpool coach Juergen Klopp said after the club’s first appearance in the knockout stage of the Champions League for almost nine years.
“I saw a lot of fantastic performances tonight and a result like this is only possible if everyone is really at the top of their game,” Klopp said. “They did it well and that’s the only way to be successful.”
Liverpool is the top-scoring side in the competition with 28 goals.
“We knew we were facing a great team but we weren’t expecting this,” said Porto defender Alex Telles, whose team was without injured midfielders Danilo Pereira and Andre Andre. Striker Vincent Aboubakar was also out with a muscle problem.
A mistake from Porto goalkeeper Jose Sa allowed Mane’s shot to squirm under his body after a slow start from the visitors, and Salah displayed all his class to make it 2-0 four minutes later inside the first half-hour.
James Milner hit the post but Salah was well-placed to take the rebound, lift it with his left foot and then head it past Sa before slotting into the empty net without letting it touch the ground.
It was the African player of the year’s sixth goal in the competition, and his ninth in eight games across all competitions.
The home side showed promise after the break but was caught on a counterattack when Sa saved Firmino’s effort, only to push the ball toward Mane’s feet. The Senegal striker needed no second invitation for his second goal.
Sa was playing in place of Iker Casillas, dropped earlier this season after falling out of favor with Porto coach Sergio Conceicao, who must have been reconsidering his decision after a shaky performance from the 24-year-old Sa.
At the other end, Virgil van Dijk marshaled Liverpool’s defense on his Champions League debut for the club following his winter switch from Southampton.
Firmino got the goal his performance deserved with a simple finish inside the left post from Milner’s cross with 20 minutes remaining, and Mane took advantage of some lax defending to seal the win with a fine strike from distance late on.
“We needed to play as a team and that’s what we did,” Mane said after his first hat trick for Liverpool. “We played great football, created great chances and scored five goals. I enjoyed the fifth goal the most.”
Casillas’ former side, Real Madrid, came from behind to beat visiting Paris Saint-Germain 3-1 in the other Champions League game on Wednesday.
 


Turkish star Turan could face more than 12 years jail for brawl

Updated 12 min 28 sec ago
0

Turkish star Turan could face more than 12 years jail for brawl

  • The incident, which took place outside an Istanbul nightclub and reportedly left singer Berkay Sahin with a broken nose, has transfixed Turkey
  • Turan said after the fight he went to the hospital where Berkay was being treated, clutching a gun and asking to be shot if the singer believed it was true he harassed his wife

ISTANBUL: Turkish prosecutors on Monday charged Barcelona player Arda Turan over a brawl with a prominent singer, asking for the footballer to be sentenced to twelve-and-a-half years in jail.
The prosecutors charged Turan, who is currently on loan to Istanbul club Basaksehir, with sexual harassment, unlicensed possession of weapons and causing intentional injury over the fight with singer Berkay Sahin, the state-run Anadolu news agency said.
Sahin, who performs under his first name Berkay, was also charged, with prosecutors demanding up to two years in jail.
Turan, 31, had last week been summoned to an Istanbul police station to give a statement about the incident but was allowed to walk free.
The incident, which took place outside an Istanbul nightclub and reportedly left Sahin with a broken nose, has transfixed Turkey over the last days.
Turkish media reports said that the dispute concerned Berkay’s wife, Ozlem Ada Sahin. Turan’s wife Aslihan Dogan was not present.
According to his statement to police, Turan said after the fight he went to the hospital where Berkay was being held, clutching a gun and asking to be shot if the singer believed it was true he harassed his wife.
He claimed to Berkay that he did not know that Ozlem was his wife.
Turan said the gun then went off when he took it back, according to the statement cited in Turkish media.
Video then emerged in Turkish media of the incident which shows a gun being flung onto the sofa at the hospital.
Former Turkish international Burak Yilmaz, who currently plays for Trabzonspor, was with Turan at the nightclub and is listed as a witness.
In a statement on his widely-followed Instagram account, Turan described some media reports about the incident as a “lie” and also an affront to his wife, who is eight-and-a-half months pregnant.
Turan admitted he had reacted “disproportionately” and said “the only thing I care about is my wife Aslihan,” admitting regretting leaving her at home to go to a nightclub just before she was due to give birth.
The attacking midfielder, who won 100 caps for the national side, has for years been Turkey’s best known footballer and is a strong supporter of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
He backed Erdogan strongly after the failed July 2016 coup, appearing at rallies outside his home, and the Turkish president even came as a witness to Turan’s marriage.
Turan is notorious for poor behavior both on and off the field.
He was banned for a record 16 games by the Turkish football authorities in May after he shoved and verbally abused a referee in a game for Basaksehir.
In June 2017, Turan was thrown out of a training camp by former coach Fatih Terim following a fracas with a reporter on a plane.
Ironically, weeks later Terim himself resigned after himself becoming involved in a fight at a kebab restaurant.
Turan joined Basaksehir last season on loan from Barcelona, where he had largely endured an unhappy spell on the bench after joining from Atletico Madrid.
Pundits say he has been on the decline ever since leaving Atletico.