FC Porto turns out the lights on spoilsport Benfica to win Portuguese championship
It is also one of the most successful, with two world championships and two European championships on its resume. Porto also has won the Portuguese league 25 times and the Portuguese Cup 15 times.
Then there is Benfica, Portugal's "other" big club, one that is a mere 107 years old but has 32 league championships and 24 Portuguese Cups to its credit, along with two European championships.
Needless to say, the two are bitter rivals. So much so, in fact, that when Porto clinched its latest league championship with a 2-1 victory over defending champion Benfica at Benfica's own Stadium of Light over the weekend, Porto's celebrating players soon found themselves in the dark and getting soaked.
Benfica tried to cut short the partying by turning off the stadium lights and turning on the sprinkler system. It didn't work. Porto's players partied anyway.
Under Coach Andre Villas Boas, Porto is unbeaten in the league this season at 23-0-2, and clinched the title by building a 16 point lead over Benfica with only five games remaining.
An emphatic 5-1 home victory over Russia's Spartka Moscow on Thursday also put Porto on the verge of the Europa League semifinals and has made Boas a more in-demand coach than ever. Look for him to move to a major team in a major league before too long.
-- Grahame L. Jones
Photo: FC Porto forward Radamel Falcao celebrates after scoring a goal against Spartak on Thursday. Credit: Miguel Riopa / AFP/Getty Images