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UEFA Europa League Final 2012

UEFA Europa League Final 2012

UEFA Europa League Final 2012

This all Spanish encounter has the makings of a classic final. Atlético Madrid will face Athletic Bilbao in the National Arena in Bucharest.

United Kingdom
Haymarket Media Group Ltd
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1 min.

FC Porto v SC Braga UEFA Europa League final, Dublin Arena Braga’s nimble defence is flat-footed for once as striker Falcao scores the only goal of the game to win the first ever all-Portuguese European final for Porto. The strike was the Colombian’s 17th of the season in Europe, a record for a single campaign, but he wasn’t the only one making history. André Villas-Boas, just 33 years and 213 days old, became the youngest manager to win a European trophy, dedicating the victory to his mentor, Sir Bobby Robson.…

7 min.
welcome from michel platini

Welcome to the final I warmly welcome everyone to the 2012 UEFA Europa League final in Bucharest. This competition keeps going from strength to strength and, after another season of compelling football, this is the ninth final in this competition to be contested by teams from the same country. As they seek to make history, I am confident that Club Atlético de Madrid and Athletic Club will produce an enthralling final, worthy of this magnificent, state-of-the-art National Arena. The Romanian Football Federation has shown immense dedication in preparing for a final that has captured the imagination of the people of Bucharest. I hope both teams and all the supporters enjoy another unforgettable night of European football. Michel Platini UEFA President Bine ati venit la finala! Un cald bun venit tuturor la finala UEFA Europa League 2012 de la Bucuresti.…

9 min.
good times

Paul Donohoe: Shamrock Rovers FC 25 August 2011 “The home game in the play-off round against FK Partizan finished 1-1 in Tallaght. Overall we’d performed very well, but still they could have been two or three goals ahead. They scored one but we pulled it back, so we went out to Belgrade more in hope than in anticipation, like most Irish teams in Europe. “We were a bit nervous during the game. They scored first, fairly early on. But we knew with them having the away goal that we always had to score over there, so actually the team relaxed a little bit after that and got into the game. It was still tense in the stands, though – there were only 43 Rovers fans in a very noisy crowd of about 16,000…

8 min.
the special ones

Jordi Alba: Valencia CF An adaptable, ball-playing left-back, Alba has shrugged off rejection by FC Barcelona (he was deemed too small when he was 16) and transfer speculation to put himself at the heart of Unai Emery’s new-look Valencia. Interchanging incisively with Pablo Piatti, Alba’s searing pace and crossing ability are core to the side’s quick-passing, pressing game. His former Valencia team-mate David Villa says: “Jordi has everything in the world to become a great player.” Making his full international debut against Scotland last October, he set up a goal for Villa. The 23-year-old star is tipped to be Spain’s first-choice left-back at UEFA EURO 2012. Defining moment Alba tormented AZ Alkmaar as Valencia beat the Dutch visitors 4-0 in their quarter-final second leg. He set up one goal, scored after a blistering run…

5 min.
from moles to miners

Parakeets: RCD Espanyol No one quite knows why this Barcelona club are called the Periquitos. Some say it is because the team once wore yellow; others because flocks of parakeets lived near their first stadium. The most complex theory involves a cartoonist who depicted Espanyol with four black cats – a comment on their fan base (locals say that when a place is deserted, all you can see is “quatre gats”). When the cartoon Felix the Cat was dubbed into Spanish in the 1920s, he was thought to sound more like a parakeet, branded Gat Perico and Espanyol evolved into Quatre Gats Pericos, and finally the Periquitos. The club lost UEFA Cup finals in 1988 and 2007. Billy Goats: 1. FC Köln The German club are known as the Geißböcke after their mascot,…

6 min.
glory years

1971/72 to 1975/761976/77 to 1980/811981/82 to 1985/861986/87 to 1990/91Form guideThe first UEFA Cup final, an all-English affair that Tottenham Hotspur FC won over two legs against Wolverhampton Wanderers FC, set the tone for the early years. English domination continued as Liverpool FC won in 1973 (Bill Shankly’s sole European trophy) and 1976. The big challenge to England came from the Low Countries and Germany. Feyenoord won in 1974, Borussia Mönchengladbach lost the 1973 final, but won in 1975, while FC Twente and Club Brugge KV were runners-up in 1975 and 1976 respectively.Although Juventus won the 1977 UEFA Cup, their first European trophy, and PSV Eindhoven triumphed in 1978, German clubs so dominated the competition that in 1979/80 the Bundesliga supplied all four semi-finalists. Gladbach won for the second time in…