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VIDEO: Koka scores brace in Rio Ave win
It has been a rather frustrating campaign for Koka so far in 2014/15 with periods of inconsistency often resulting in him being dropped from the starting eleven, however, he got the nod this evening ahead of Esmaël Gonçalves and Emmanuel Boateng, and he didn’t disappoint.
After a fairly even opening to the game, Rio Ave started to take control after half an hour, and the opener came after 36 minutes, with Koka latching onto the end of an Ukra free-kick and slotting the ball past Cristiano in the Académica goal. Brilliant technique by the Egyptian, and great vision by Ukra to anticipate Koka’s run at the far post.
Hassan wasn’t finished there though, because just four minutes later, Ukra fed a pass to Tiago Pinto, who then spotted the run of Koka and played a lovely through-ball into his path, and the 21-year-old made no mistake with his side-footed effort which was similar in many ways to his first goal.
Rio Ave would extend their lead just one minute after Koka was taken off and replaced by Renan Bressan, twenty minutes into the second half; Ukra the scorer this time, adding a goal to his earlier assist, keeping his cool while under pressure from an Académica defender to calmly slot home and seal the game for the home side.
3-0 is how it ended, and Rio Ave’s recent domestic struggles appear to have ended, and indeed so does Koka’s long period without a goal, as he now has three goals in as many league games since his scoreless spell ended, and tonight’s goals brings his season tally to seven.
Next up for Rio Ave is a trip to FC Porto after the international break.