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Monaco make history in Champions League
Mike Collett | November 06, 2003 10:51 IST
Monaco thrashed Deportivo Coruna 8-3 in the highest scoring match in Champions League history on Wednesday while Juventus became the second team to qualify for the knockout phase.
Juve, last season's beaten finalists, joined Real Madrid in the last 16 after a 0-0 draw at Real Sociedad but elsewhere the goals flew in.
Monaco's victory was the highest scoring match in elite European competition for 23 years and the highest since the Champions League started 11 years ago.
No other team in the Champions League had scored eight goals in one match before either. Monaco's Croatian striker Dado Prso celebrated his 29th birthday with four goals -- only the third player in Champions League history to do that after Marco Van Basten (AC Milan) in 1992 and Simone Inzaghi (Lazio) in 2000.
There was also a shock 2-1 home defeat for Bayern Munich against Olympique Lyon, a late crucial 1-0 win for Arsenal over Dynamo Kiev and an outstanding 3-1 win for Celtic over Anderlecht which revived the Scottish champions hopes of reaching the last 16.
But Juve's goalless draw at Sociedad means that although they lost their 100 per cent record in Group D, they cannot finish lower than second as Olympiakos beat Galatasaray 3-0.
Juve now join Real, who qualified on Tuesday, in the knockout phase.
There was drama in almost every match played on Wednesday and a major shock where Olympique Lyon beat Bayern 2-1 in Group A with former Munich favourite Giovanne Elber coming back to haunt his old team with a 53rd minute winner for Lyon.
Elber covered his face and appeared to burst into tears after scoring, but they were more likely to be tears of joy as his current side now have the better chance of advancing.
With Celtic beating Anderlecht 3-1 in Glasgow after racing into a 3-0 lead after 29 minutes -- the group has been turned on its head with Lyon now top with seven points from four matches, followed by Celtic (6), Munich (5) and Anderlecht (4).
In Group B Arsenal won for only the second time in 13 Champions League matches when an 88th minute header from Ashley Cole gave them a 1-0 win over Dynamo Kiev at Highbury.
Despite dominating for long periods, Arsenal appeared to be heading out of the competition, but their win, together with the 1-1 draw between Inter Milan and Lokomotiv Moscow at the San Siro has revived their hopes and thrown the group open.
Inter lead with seven points followed by Dynamo Kiev (6), Lokomotiv Moscow (5) and Arsenal (4).
The outstanding match of the night, if not the season, came in Monaco where the home side raced into a 5-2 lead by halftime against Deportivo Coruna and ended up winning 8-3 with most of the 11 goals brilliantly executed.
The previous Champions League record of nine goals in one match -- set when Paris St Germain beat Rosenborg 7-2 in October 2000 -- was passed as early as the 52nd minute when Diego Tristan scored the tenth goal of the game to pull Deportivo back to 7-3.
The last match in the elite competition to produce 11 goals was in 1980-81 when Liverpool defeated OPS Oulu of Finland 10-1 in a European Cup first round match at Anfield.
Wednesday's match was almost as one-sided as Monaco raced into a 4-0 lead after only 29 minutes against the Spaniards who could have qualified for the last 16 if results had gone their way.
Although Deportivo fought back with Tristan scoring two of their three goals it was Prso who grabbed the headlines at the Stade Velodrome.
Prso's haul included two headers, a simple tap-in and a powerful shot while Czech forward Jaroslav Plasil also scored a goal to remember with a brilliantly-taken lobbed effort from 25 metres. Deportivo replaced goalkeeper Jose Molina with Gustavo Munua at halftime, but it made little difference and the victory lifted Monaco on to nine points and virtually certain of a place in the last 16.
Deportivo, who had only conceded one goal in three matches before this demolition, are second on seven points, followed by PSV Eindhoven (6) and AEK Athens (1).
PSV beat AEK 2-0 with second half goals from Wilfred Bouma and Arjen Robben, with PSV and Deportivo now likely to settle the duel for second spot in the last group match on December 10.
With Juve's qualification from Group D assured, Real Sociedad look set to join them -- although they cannot take anything for granted.
Juve (10 points) lead Sociedad (7), Olympiakos (3) and Galatasaray (3) with Sociedad's last two matches against the Greeks and then the Turkish side.