Champions League quarter-finals: Chelsea v FC Porto

Champions League quarter-finals: Chelsea v FC Porto

Chelsea survived a spectacular late overhead kick from Mehdi Taremi to overcome Porto and confirm a place in the Champions League semi-finals for the first time in seven years.

Thomas Tuchel’s side went into this ‘home’ last-eight second leg – with both games being played in Seville during the current Covid-19 pandemic – protecting a two-goal lead they only briefly threatened to surrender in the dying seconds following Taremi’s brilliant finish.

Chelsea, who will now face either Liverpool or Real Madrid in the semi-final, played within themselves but it was enough to keep a disappointing Porto at bay, the Portuguese side rarely testing keeper Edouard Mendy with their surprisingly cautious approach, which they only cast aside when it was too late.

Mendy’s poor clearance almost offered Jesus Corona a first-half chance but he could not take advantage, while Christian Pulisic and Mason Mount had opportunities after the break.

Taremi’s goal was out of character with the rest of Porto’s performance and came too late to alter the inevitable course of this quarter-final.

Cool Kante pulls the strings

Chelsea manager Tuchel suggested he might have preferred to keep N’Golo Kante on the bench after a recent hamstring problem, until an injury to fellow midfielder Mateo Kovacic forced his hand.

And he was rewarded with yet another masterclass from the France international, who showed supreme positional sense, tireless work-rate and that uncanny ability to spot any rare danger before prompting attacks of his own.

Kante has been an outstanding figure since Tuchel succeeded Frank Lampard and it is no surprise the German has come to count on him so readily, this understated but world-class performer completing the full 90 minutes despite doubts over his match fitness.

Chelsea adopted an understandably conservative approach, taking no chances and refusing to offer Porto any route back into this tie. Porto were largely lacklustre and rarely showed any of the sparkle that saw them shock Italian giants Juventus in the previous round.

They may not have offered any serious threat of their own, although Mount was denied by superb defending from Porto defender Wilson Manafa.

In reality, however, there was no need whatsoever for Chelsea to take unnecessary risks that may have allowed Porto back in. This was about game management and, despite that last-ditch scare, for Chelsea it was a job very well done.

N'Golo Kane
Kante was back in the Chelsea starting line-up after making two substitute appearances against Porto and Crystal Palace following a hamstring injury

Can Chelsea win the Champions League?

Chelsea’s hopes of claiming the crown for a second time will certainly be rising after this mature performance, even in eventual defeat, to add to the impressive elimination of the powerful La Liga leaders Atletico Madrid in the last 16.

Tuchel has Chelsea organised, fiercely disciplined and increasing in confidence – a mood that will only grow as they prepare to face either Liverpool or Real Madrid. Yes, this was a loss but the overall tie will be regarded as a highly satisfactory outcome.

The Champions League can often be about timing the run of form and there is no doubt Chelsea have built up impressive momentum under Tuchel aside from the 5-2 thrashing at home to relegation-threatened West Bromwich Albion at Stamford Bridge recently.

Chelsea will show the requisite respect to whoever they face in the semi-final but they will not fear either Liverpool or Real Madrid, depending on who prevails at Anfield on Wednesday.

Tuchel has bolstered their defence and while this was a performance built on those solid foundations and with Kante and Jorginho as the anchors, Chelsea have already shown they have attacking weapons when required.

Chelsea will not shout about their Champions League aspirations – but there is no reason why they should not fancy their chances, even though the record will show this ‘home’ second leg as a defeat.

Only three shots on target

  • Chelsea have reached the Champions League semi-finals for the eighth time, more than any other English side in the competition’s history.
  • Porto have exited in the Champions League knockout stages on 14 occasions, with 50% of those eliminations coming at the hands of English sides. Porto have been knocked out by an English team on each of the last three occasions they’ve reached the knockout rounds (Liverpool in 2017-18 and 2018-19).
  • There were just three shots on target in this match (1 for Chelsea, 2 for Porto), with two of these coming in added time (Christian Pulisic for Chelsea and Mehdi Taremi’s late winner).
  • This was just Porto’s second ‘away’ victory in the Champions League knockout stages (D6 L13), after their win at Deportivo in the 2003-04 semi-final.
  • This was Porto’s first ever ‘away’ win against an English side in European competition, with the Portuguese side having failed to win any of their first 21 such games (D3 L18).
  • Mehdi Taremi’s 93rd-minute strike was the latest Chelsea have conceded in a Champions League game (excluding extra-time) since April 2005 against Bayern Munich, when Mehmet Scholl scored in the 95th minute.
  • Jorginho made eight tackles in this match, the most by a Chelsea player in a Champions League game since N’Golo Kanté against Barcelona in March 2018 (also 8).

Player of the match

MountMason Mount

with an average of 6.97


  1. Squad number19Player nameMount

  2. Squad number7Player nameKanté

  3. Squad number10Player namePulisic

  4. Squad number21Player nameChilwell

  5. Squad number24Player nameJames

  6. Squad number28Player nameAzpilicueta

  7. Squad number2Player nameRüdiger

  8. Squad number6Player nameThiago Silva

  9. Squad number29Player nameHavertz

  10. Squad number5Player nameJorginho

  11. Squad number16Player nameMendy

  12. Squad number18Player nameGiroud

  13. Squad number22Player nameZiyech

FC Porto

  1. Squad number9Player nameTaremi

  2. Squad number3Player namePepe

  3. Squad number16Player nameGrujic

  4. Squad number11Player nameMarega

  5. Squad number17Player nameJM Corona

  6. Squad number25Player nameOtávio

  7. Squad number19Player nameMbemba

  8. Squad number27Player nameSérgio Oliveira

  9. Squad number50Player nameFábio Vieira

  10. Squad number8Player nameUribe

  11. Squad number12Player nameSanusi

  12. Squad number1Player nameMarchesín

  13. Squad number18Player nameWilson Manafá

  14. Squad number7Player nameDíaz

  15. Squad number31Player nameNanu

  16. Squad number30Player nameEvanilson



Formation 3-4-2-1

  • 16Mendy
  • 28Azpilicueta
  • 6Thiago Silva
  • 2Rüdiger
  • 24James
  • 7Kanté
  • 5Jorginho
  • 21Chilwell
  • 10Pulisic
  • 19MountSubstituted forZiyechat 86′minutes
  • 29HavertzSubstituted forGiroudat 90+2′minutes


  • 1Arrizabalaga
  • 3Alonso
  • 4Christensen
  • 9Abraham
  • 11Werner
  • 13Caballero
  • 15Zouma
  • 18Giroud
  • 20Hudson-Odoi
  • 22Ziyech
  • 33Emerson

FC Porto

Formation 4-3-3

  • 1Marchesín
  • 18Manafá JancóSubstituted forChipela Gomesat 75′minutes
  • 19Mbemba
  • 3PepeBooked at 82mins
  • 12Sanusi
  • 27OliveiraBooked at 46minsSubstituted forVieiraat 84′minutes
  • 16GrujicSubstituted forTaremiat 63′minutesBooked at 90mins
  • 8Uribe
  • 17JM CoronaBooked at 74minsSubstituted forDíazat 75′minutesBooked at 88mins
  • 11MaregaSubstituted forde Lima Barbosaat 75′minutes
  • 25Otávio


  • 4Monteiro Pinto Leite
  • 6Loum
  • 7Díaz
  • 9Taremi
  • 14Morais Ramos
  • 21Silva Baró
  • 29Martínez
  • 30de Lima Barbosa
  • 31Chipela Gomes
  • 32Sarr
  • 50Vieira
  • 85Conceição

Live Text

  1. Match ends, Chelsea 0, FC Porto 1.

  2. Second Half ends, Chelsea 0, FC Porto 1.

  3. Mehdi Taremi (FC Porto) is shown the yellow card.

  4. (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  5. Goal! Chelsea 0, FC Porto 1. Mehdi Taremi (FC Porto) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the top right corner. Assisted by Nanu with a cross.

  6. Attempt saved. Christian Pulisic (Chelsea) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Hakim Ziyech with a through ball.

  7. Substitution, Chelsea. Olivier Giroud replaces Kai Havertz.

  8. Mateus Uribe (FC Porto) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  9. Foul by N’Golo Kanté (Chelsea).

  10. Foul by Mateus Uribe (FC Porto).

  11. Christian Pulisic (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  12. Offside, Chelsea. Jorginho tries a through ball, but Hakim Ziyech is caught offside.

  13. Corner, Chelsea. Conceded by Fábio Vieira.

  14. Corner, Chelsea. Conceded by Nanu.

  15. Luis Díaz (FC Porto) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

  16. Foul by Luis Díaz (FC Porto).

  17. Christian Pulisic (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  18. Substitution, Chelsea. Hakim Ziyech replaces Mason Mount.

  19. Foul by Zaidu Sanusi (FC Porto).

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