Chelsea get past Porto for spot in Champions semifinals

Sports Desk, Apr 13 (EFE).- Porto beat Chelsea 0-1 Tuesday in the second leg of their Champions League quarterfinal thanks to Mehdi Taremi’s spectacular goal in stoppage time, but the Blues prevailed 2-1 on aggregate to reach the final four for the first time in seven years.

Chelsea will be making their eighth appearance in the semifinals, the most of any English club in the history of the competition.

With his team down 0-2 after the first leg, Porto coach Sergio Conceiçao decided there was no point in caution, while Blues boss Thomas Tuchel put the focus on defending the lead.

The Porto attack was led by Jose Manuel Corona, better known as “Tecatito,” who created some moments of danger in front of the Chelsea goal.

Blues goalkeeper Edouard Mendy carelessly sent the ball to Tecatito on the edge of the box in the 11th minute and the mistake could have proved costly if Jorginho hadn’t been able to steer the Mexican’s shot away for a corner.

In the 33rd minute, Chelsea defender Ben Chilwell allowed a ball into the area from Chancel Mbemba to bounce past him to a waiting Tecatito, who fired into the stands.

The Chelsea attack finally stirred to life 10 minutes into the second half. N’Golo Kante and Mason Mount combined to send the ball forward to Chilwell, who directed a cross into the path of the onrushing Christian Pulisic, but the US international failed to get off a shot.

Porto defender Wilson Manafa blocked a strike from Mount on the following sequence.

Mendy dealt easily with a tame header from Taremi in the 65th minute and from that point to the end of regulation, neither keeper had much to do.

Once into stoppage time, both teams shifted into a higher gear. Pulisic burst in on goal in the 92nd, prompting Agustin Marchesin to come off his line. The American tried to get around the Porto keeper, but the Argentine managed to get his hands on the ball.

Seconds later, Taremi halved the deficit for Porto with a sparkling overhead kick, but the goal came too late to be the start of a comeback. EFE msg/dr

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