Deco scores for both sides in his own farewell match
Deco enjoyed a memorable farewell match in Porto on Friday night, scoring for both sides in an entertaining 4-4 draw between the Barcelona class of 2006 and the FC Porto class of 2004.
Deco, the Brazilian-born Portuguese midfielder, retired in August 2013 having won a number of titles for different clubs. The 36-year-old also counts the UEFA Club Football Player award in 2004 and the 2006 FIFA Club World Cup Golden Ball among two of his best personal accolades.
“There were more than 500 games at clubs like Porto, Barcelona, Chelsea and Fluminese. I had the pleasure of representing Portugal for 75 times and throw in some of the best competitions in the world as the Champions League, Euro and World,” Deco said prior to his farewell game.
“After thousands of miles in the legs, numerous trips, joys and titles came time to return the affection of the fans. It’s time to say goodbye to the pitch with the people of my heart’s club. I’ll celebrate at Dragão Stadium with my colleagues, family, friends and all dragons,” he added.
Former Porto and Sporting Lisbon striker Vanderlei Fernandes Silva opened the scoring for Porto as early as the third minute before Benni McCarthy made it 2-0 when he tapped home from close range after being teed up Deco.
Deco switched sides to play for Barcelona in the second half as the Catalan giants also brought Lionel Messi and Samuel Eto'o into the fray.
Eto'o comfortably slotted home to reduce Porto's deficit before Deco levelled matters with a composed finish from close range after being teed up by the Cameroonian.
Edgaras Jankauskas restored Porto's lead in the 62nd minute, only for Eto'o to level the scores again six minutes later following good work from Messi.
Messi made it 4-3 to the Catalans with a strong header in the 81st minute but it was Deco, however, who had the last laugh. The man of the moment switched back to FC Porto and his delightful chipped volley bounced off the crossbar in the 90th minute and ensured that the fascinating contest ended 4-4.
FC Porto: Vitor Baia, Nuno, Jorge Costa, Pedro Emanuel, Ricardo Carvalho, Ricardo Costa, Carlos Secretario, Nuno Valente, Paulo Ferreira, Mario Silva, Costinha, Sergio Conceicao, Dmitri Alenichev, Jose Bosingwa, Maniche. Carlos Alberto, Marco Ferreira, Pedro Mendes, Edgaras Jankauskas, Derlei, Cesar Peixoto, Benni McCarthy; Jose Mourinho
FC Barcelona: Victor Valdes, Albert Jorquera, Juliano Belletti, Rafael Marquez, Carles Puyol, Edmilson, Sylvinho, Oleguer, Thiago Motta, Xavi, Ronaldinho, Giovanni van Bronckhorst, Mark van Bommel, Gabri, Andres Iniesta, Henrik Larsson, Ludovic Giuly, Samuel Eto’o, Maxi Lopez, Lionel Messi, Gianluca Zambrotta, Eric Abidal, Diego Milito, Demetrio Albertini; Frank Riijkaard