Bellamy, Liverpool hold off Barcelona

February 21, 2007

Liverpool rallied for a 2-1 victory at defending champion Barcelona on Wednesday night in the second round of the European Champions League, and Internazionale of Milan was held to a 2-2 tie by visiting Valencia.

In a matchup of the last two winners of European soccer's most prestigious club competition, Craig Bellamy scored in the 43rd minute and set up John Arne Riise's goal in the 74th at Barcelona after Deco had given the home team a 14th-minute lead.

Bellamy celebrated his goal with an imaginary golf swing. Media reports said he had been fined about $155,000 after allegedly attacking Riise with a golf club during an alcohol-filled night in Portugal last week.

"I take the rough with the smooth. I know what my career's about," Bellamy said. "Because it's me, it's an even bigger deal. If there was a big problem, I wouldn't be playing here."

The second legs of the home-and-home, total-goals series will be played in two weeks.

At San Siro, Inter took leads on goals by Esteban Cambiasso in the 29th and Maicon in the 76th, but Valencia came back on goals by David Villa in the 64th and David Silva in the 87th.

Chelsea gained a 1-1 tie at Porto, the former club of current Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho. Raul Meireles scored on a volley for Porto in the 12th minute while Chelsea captain John Terry was off the field getting treatment for a calf muscle injury, but Andriy Shevchenko tied it four minutes later off a feed from Arjen Robben.

AS Roma was held to a 0-0 tie by visiting Lyon.


Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press