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  • By Alessandro Schiavone

Spurs legend Alderweireld and Royal Antwerp trashed 4-1 by Porto and in hot water

From Alessandro Schiavone at Bosuilstadion

Royal Antwerp 1-4 Porto

Goals: Yussuf (A), Eustaquio, Evanilson 3x (P)

Toby Alderweireld and his inexperienced Royal Antwerp side are staring exit from the Champions League in the face after throwing away another lead to lose 4-1 to Porto.

The Belgians have now conceded NINE goals in three second-halves against Barcelona, Shakthar Donetzk and Porto, scoring none.

Had the games against the Ukrainian and Portuguese giants ended after the first 45 minutes in which they were leading, Mark Van Bommel's men would have six points and comfortably sit in second place.

Yet they last 90 minutes and have no point on board.

Second-best for the majority of the opening half, the ex-Spurs veteran's Champions League novelties took the lead through Alhassan Yussuf on 37 minutes.

There was an element of fortune about the goal as the player was in the right place at the right time. He was the first to a loose ball and buried it with a majestic finish that must have reminded Alderweireld of his once Spurs teammate Harry Kane.

Yet despite trailing, Porto looked the more likely of the two teams to score as they made a couple of inroads inside the hosts' box.

And Sergio Conceiçao's men had another spring in their step in the second-half, spicing up the entertainment with their panache and style.

Scrappy and wasteful in first half, all of a sudden they were free flowing in the second. And Alderweireld's reigning champions had no answers to their full-throttle approach.

Pepe, Taremi, Eustaquio and Evanilson started to fine-tune some of their attacks.

The latter was the orchestra conductor, netting an impressive 28th-minute hat-trick with Eustaquio also adding his name to the scoresheet.

Alderweireld, who lost two Champions League finals in five years, saw his header crash against the upper side of the crossbar with his side two goals behind and also blocked a net-bound effort.

There is not much a single player can do on his own, no matter how good he is.

Antwerp will learn from their mistakes and bounce back stronger as third place in the group and qualification for the Champions' Play-offs in the domestic league are still up for grabs.

Having to juggle the extra demands of European football is a tall order for such a small squad but can't be an excuse.

They need a different approach and concentration levels on their return from the dressing room.


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