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Last Updated:  Wednesday, 26 February, 2003, 08:52 GMT
Depor grab lifeline
Alexandre Quennoz of Basle (left) and Deportivo la Coruna striker Diego Tristan
Tristan (right) scored the only goal
Deportivo 1-0 Basle

Deportivo Coruna reignited their Champions League campaign after an early goal from in-form striker Diego Tristan gave them victory over Basle.

The Spanish international was gifted the simplest of tap-ins when Basle goalkeeper Pascal Zuberbuehler failed to gather a harmless-looking cross after four minutes.

The win means Depor leapfrog the Swiss side in the standings and are now level on four points with Juventus.

Deportivo, who not yet won a match in the second phase, got off to a perfect start when Tristan poked in at the far post after Zuberbuehler flapped at a cross from right back Hector.

But Basle seemed unperturbed by their early setback and put together a series of promising attacks in the next few minutes.

Midfielder Carlos Varela saw his fierce drive parried by Depor goalkeeper Juanmi and seconds later forward Christian Gimenez sent a glancing header just wide of the post.

Basle did their best to exploit some lax Depor defending from set pieces, but were unable to add the finishing touch when they came within striking distance of the goal.

Defender Marco Zwyssig was given a free header by the Deportivo defence only to see it blocked by team-mate Gimenez as it made its way towards goal.

Deportivo tried their best to tame the lively Basle attack, but missed the stabilising influence of injured Brazilian midfielder Mauro Silva and never looked comfortable with their narrow lead.

The hosts looked a different side when live-wire winger Jose Emilio Amavisca came on and began linking well with the Deportivo attack.

Deportivo substitute striker Albert Luque seemed certain to score nine minutes from time when he raced clear of the Basle defence but stumbled and lost control off the ball after he had rounded goalkeeper Zuberbuehler.

Basle forward Hakan Yakin came within a whisker of grabbing an equaliser six minutes from time when his dipping volley skimmed the bar.

And Depor had to endure several other nervous moments before claiming their narrow win.

D Coruna: Juanmi, Hector, Romero, Andrade, Naybet, Scaloni, Fran (Amavisca 58), Sergio, Duscher, Makaay (Luque 79), Tristan (Valeron 67).
Subs Not Used: Mallo, Manuel Pablo, Capdevila, Acuna.

Basle: Zuberbuhler, Haas, Quennoz, Zwyssig, Huggel, Varela (Juilio Rossi 56), Barberis (Tum 73), Atouba, Gimenez, Hakan Yakin, Chipperfield.
Subs Not Used: Rapo, Duruz, Degen.

Booked: Varela.

Attendance: 27,000.

Referee: Stephane Bre (France).

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