Chelsea sees off Porto to reach semis despite Taremi stunner

Chelsea's Mason Mount and Christian Pulisic each came close to breaking the deadlock after the interval but the London team was more focused on keeping Porto at bay.

Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel celebrates with his team after the Champions League second leg match between Chelsea and FC Porto. Chelsea qualified to the semis on aggregate.   -  AP

Mehdi Taremi scored a stunning overhead kick to hand Porto a 1-0 victory over Chelsea in Tuesday's Champions League quarter-final second leg but it was not enough to prevent the Premier League side from progressing to the last four with a 2-1 aggregate win.

MATCH CENTRE

The substitute had been responsible for his side's only attempt on target as it chased a 2-0 deficit from last week's first leg but he provided an emphatic response in a cagey game with his acrobatic strike deep into added time.

Thomas Tuchel's side had a healthy lead from last week's away game in Seville and had to withstand an intense start from Porto in its home leg back at the Sanchez Pizjuan Stadium, the venue of both games due to Portugal's coronavirus restrictions.

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Porto's Jesus Corona closed down Chelsea's Edouard Mendy early on but failed to make the most of the keeper's botched pass. The Mexican winger missed another good chance later in the half when he shuffled past Ben Chilwell in the area only to blast over the crossbar.

Chelsea's Mason Mount and Christian Pulisic each came close to breaking the deadlock after the interval but the London team was more focused on keeping Porto at bay.

Taremi's last-gasp strike prevented it from keeping a clean sheet but Chelsea still managed to reach the semi-finals of Europe's top competition for the first time since 2014.

Kovacic to miss FA Cup semifinal due to injury

Chelsea midfielder Mateo Kovacic will miss Saturday's FA Cup semi-final against Manchester City at Wembley due to a hamstring injury, manager Thomas Tuchel said.

Kovacic missed Tuesday's 1-0 Champions League quarter-final second leg defeat by Porto, though Chelsea still reached the last four 2-1 on aggregate and will face either Real Madrid or Liverpool.

"(On Monday) in training he got a muscle injury in his hamstring after 20 minutes, more or less out of nothing," Tuchel said after Tuesday's game.

"He is for sure out for the game against City as well, which is a big loss."

Tuchel started N'Golo Kante in Kovacic's absence, with the France international playing the full game after returning from a hamstring problem.

"N'Golo is incredible," Tuchel said. "We took a little risk with N'Golo but this was the moment to put him on the field and hope he had the energy for 90 minutes.

"He wins so many balls and gives everybody confidence. He did perfect and now it's time to recover good."

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