Porto coach Conceicao: It’s only half-time, Latest Football News - The New Paper

Porto coach Conceicao: It’s only half-time

Porto deserved to leave Anfield with at least a goal, insisted coach Sergio Conceicao after his side fell 2-0 to Liverpool in the Champions League quarter-final, first leg yesterday morning (Singapore time).

First-half goals from Naby Keita and Roberto Firmino gave the English Premier League leaders the advantage, ahead of next Wednesday's second leg at the Estadio do Dragao.

"We are at the halfway stage of the tie, we're in the interval, this isn't over yet," said Conceicao.

"The lads in the changing room find it tough to accept this result. We played a competent match, we could have got a different result, we could have left Anfield with a goal."

Porto midfielder Danilo Pereira said that Liverpool scored against the run of play, but added that tie was still wide open.

"The result is bad, but it's still wide open. Next week, we play at home and we are perfectly capable of scoring two goals," he said.

"We started well, but the goal shook us a little. The goal was against the run of play... But, in the second half, we responded very well. When we attacked them, we caused Liverpool lots of problems."

Pereira could have missed the return leg after he was caught with a studs-up challenge by Mohamed Salah and, despite VAR being available, the Egyptian escaped without even being booked.

"Danilo has to give thanks to God because this is an entrance to break a leg," Porto president Pinto da Costa said via Portuguese outlet Record .

"I thank God that Danilo has not broken a leg."

Former EPL referee Mark Clattenburg said that Salah "was very fortunate not to be sent off" for the challenge.

"Uefa guidelines on this type of challenge are clear - anything with studs above the ankle is a red card," he told the Mail.

"The VAR should have sent the referee to the review area, where I am sure he would have decided that Salah should be sent off. Instead, he is free to play in the second leg."