FC Porto manager Sergio Conceicao reckons his team’s heavy Champions League defeat to Liverpool wasn’t a fair reflection on his players’ “fantastic” performance.
The Portuguese giants were brushed aside by Liverpool on Wednesday night by losing the return leg of their quarter-final 4-1 at home.
Sadio Mane, Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino and Van Dijk all found the net for Liverpool. Although the Real Madrid-bound Eder Militao did pull a goal back for Porto in the second half.
Therefore, Conceicao’s side exited the competition with a 6-1 aggregate defeat upon losing the first-leg 2-0 at Anfield last week.
Despite the big loss, however, Porto had actually got off to a strong start in Portugal and tested Liverpool early on. But they ultimately paid a big price for their lack of firepower in the area.
“Liverpool only had four shots on goal and scored four goals, which demonstrates the quality of their team,” said Conceicao, as quoted by Goal.
“I think it is unfair. We deserved more, the fans deserved more, but we gave a very positive image of Portuguese football.
“We did not deserve to come away from Anfield with a two-goal difference. Today we knew it was possible, we prepared a strategy that I think was appropriate, and at first, we did well at all levels.
“The one time our opponents entered our penalty area, it was a goal. The strength coming from the stands made me shiver. We have played our part in Europe.
“My players were fantastic. Our Champions League campaign was fantastic. Liverpool are a very strong team.”
The Dragons will now resume the defence of their Primeira Liga crown on Saturday, where Santa Clara will visit them at the Estadio do Dragao.
Porto are currently tied with Benfica at the top of the standings on 72 points, but behind on an inferior goal difference.