Champions League: Chelsea enter semi-final after beating Porto 2-1 on aggregate

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The transverse from the close was curling distant from extremity astatine enarthrosis tallness erstwhile Mehdi Taremi took off, connecting with a spectacular scissor footwear that sent the shot into the apical country from 12 meters out.

A beauteous extremity — arguably the champion successful the Champions League this play — to settee an disfigured match.

It wasn't capable for Porto.

Chelsea qualified for the semifinals for the archetypal clip since 2014 contempt a 1-0 nonaccomplishment to the Portuguese champions connected Tuesday, the English squad going done 2-1 connected aggregate to conscionable either Real Madrid oregon Liverpool for a spot successful the final.

Aside from Taremi's stunning, acrobatic effort successful the 4th infinitesimal of second-half stoppage time, Chelsea successfully stifled Porto successful what proved to beryllium thing of an arm-wrestle and was blessed to trust connected the distant goals scored by Mason Mount and Ben Chilwell successful the archetypal leg, which was besides played successful Seville due to the fact that of coronavirus restrictions.

It wasn't beauteous but Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel didn't care.

“I tin ideate that some games were not the nicest games to ticker connected the tv for spectators who look for entertainment,” Tuchel said. "I tin wholly judge that, but it's precise hard to play your champion crippled against Porto.

“Part of a show is not letting your hostile perform. This is what they bash and this is what we bash also. Today was the time to bent in.”

The niggly quality of the quarterfinal extended to the sidelines, with Tuchel and Sérgio Conceição exchanging words astatine the last whistle and the Porto manager showing his vexation by cutting abbreviated his post-match quality league aft questions astir the confrontation.

Tuchel shrugged it off. He has bigger concerns, firstly an FA Cup semifinal lucifer against Manchester City connected Saturday and past a 2nd consecutive Champions League semifinal connected a idiosyncratic basis. Last year, helium was astatine this signifier with Paris Saint-Germain and precocious to the final, wherever his squad mislaid to Bayern Munich.

PSG avenged that nonaccomplishment by knocking retired Bayern connected Tuesday, progressing connected distant goals aft losing the 2nd limb 1-0.

Tuchel doesn't person the prima prime of PSG astatine his disposal astatine Chelsea, conscionable a young, hard-working squad which is outperforming expectations — albeit contempt a spending spree of astir $300 cardinal successful the past offseason.

“We instrumentality it similar an adventure,” helium said. "It’s a large measurement to beryllium successful a semifinal for them. This is simply a very, precise large achievement.

“You spot the past clip Chelsea has been successful a semifinal, truthful we are not utilized to being determination ... We request each infinitesimal to learn, to grow. You cannot amended without these experiences.”

Under Tuchel, who replaced the fired Frank Lampard successful January, Chelsea has lone conceded 1 extremity successful 4 knockout matches, having nullified Atlético Madrid successful the past 16. While helium has mostly sorted retired the team’s defense, Chelsea’s onslaught is inactive a enactment successful advancement and volition apt request to amended if it is to triumph the contention for a 2nd time, aft 2012.

A virtually chanceless 2nd limb often got bogged down successful midfield, wherever N’Golo Kante shone for Chelsea connected his instrumentality from a hamstring injury. Chelsea relied connected counterattacks done the lively Christian Pulisic and Mount but yet was arsenic unthreatening arsenic Porto.

Porto, for its part, tried to thin connected its spot astatine acceptable pieces and crosses into the punishment country to find a mode backmost into the quarterfinal and they were the lone times Chelsea looked perturbed, with a header from Taremi — a 63rd-minute substitute — from 1 wide transportation easy saved by goalkeeper Edouard Mendy.

He made a overmuch cleaner transportation with his outrageous volley successful wounded time, the shot flying into the apical right-hand country and leaving Mendy motionless.

There was nary clip for Porto to find a 2nd goal, though.

“I would hazard to accidental that was 1 of the champion matches the nine has played connected a method ground successful the Champions League,” Conceição said.

“We were superior successful some matches but we lacked a spot of ratio against these types of teams.”

It's Chelsea going through, though, with Madrid its apt opponent. The Spanish squad leads Liverpool 3-1 aft the archetypal leg.

(with inputs from AP)