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Porto march into last 16

Posted: 23 Feb 2011 08:53 PM PST

Thursday, February 24th, 2011 12:35:00

LISBON: Porto earned their spot in the last 16 on away goals after a 1-0 defeat to Sevilla at Estadio do Dragao this morning.

Porto, holding a 2-1 lead from last week's first-leg in Spain, looked in complete control of the second meeting until a two-minute spell midway through the second-half threatened to undo all their good work.

First, Sevilla substitute striker Luis Fabiano scored against his former club to give the 2006 and 2007 Uefa Cup champions a lifeline, and then 60 seconds later, Porto were reduced to 10 men when Alvaro Pereira was shown a straight red card.

Porto suddenly looked in serious trouble, but Sevilla lost their man advantage five minutes later when centreback Alexis was also dismissed for a second yellow card, and the visitors could find no way through in the closing stages as they exited the competition.

Porto boss Andres Villas-Boas was delighted at having qualified to the next round.

"We showed great spirit to maintain the advantage we created in Seville," Villas-Boas told A Bola.

"There was concentration and discipline. Football is chaotic and unpredictable and the unexpected happened today. We had seven chances but couldn't score. Anything could have happened in this game.

"It was a defeat but we had an important victory in the first-leg and secured our passage to the next phase."

Sevilla manager Gregorio Manzano lamented his side's exit.

"In the first-half we missed having the ball to try to organise a better and more accurate offensive game," he said.

"After the break, taking into account the result we were required to achieve, we introduced many offensive players to score goals.

"We got the first, and then it was a matter of us taking our chances in the final stretch but we failed, unfortunately."

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Mancini only focusses on Aris

Posted: 23 Feb 2011 08:57 PM PST

Thursday, February 24th, 2011 12:34:00

MANCHESTER: Manager Roberto Mancini (above) admitted he has no idea how long he will be able to keep striker Carlos Tevez at Manchester City.

Reports this week quoted Tevez's representative Kia Joorabchian as claiming the Argentine — who scored his 50th goal for City in last Sunday's 5-0 FA Cup fourth-round replay win over Notts County — would be happy to rejoin Brazilian side Corinthians, a move he was confident he could seal for his client within the next couple of years.

Tevez's current deal with City runs until the summer of 2014 and asked if he felt keeping hold of the club captain would be a problem, Mancini said: "I don't know this.

"I'm happy for Tevez because he has scored 50 goals for City and I hope he can continue to score, but in football it is impossible to know what will happen in the future. I hope he can continue to play here."

Mancini insisted he was not concerned by the speculation and that his focus was on City's remaining fixtures this season — starting with the Europa League last-16 second-leg against Greek club Aris Salonika at City of Manchester Stadium tomorrow (4.05am).

"At this moment, I am worried only about the game, not about other things," he said.

"I'm worried about the championship and the Cups."

Ahead of the clash with Aris, with whom they drew 0-0 in the first-leg, City have been hit by the news that goalkeeper Shay Given could be out of action for three months with a shoulder injury.

Given is seeing a specialist about the problem today and Mancini expects the Republic of Ireland international will require surgery.

Given also damaged his shoulder last April, which prompted City, whose current first-choice goalkeeper Joe Hart was playing for Birmingham on loan at the time, to sign Marton Fulop on an emergency temporary deal from Sunderland for their final three games of the 2009-2010 campaign.

Mancini hopes he will not have to do something similar this time, with Stuart Taylor available as back-up for Hart and the manager considering recalling David Gonzales from his loan spell at Leeds.

Balotelli is fit to play despite suffering a clash of heads in the game at the weekend, while Shaun Wright-Phillips is also in contention again having been sidelined with a back problem.

Micah Richards has picked up what appears to be a calf injury though, so will not feature and James Milner (hamstring), Nigel de Jong and Adam Johnson (both ankle) remain out.

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