PSG 0-1 Bayern Munich (agg: 3-3): Champions League quarter-final, second leg – as it happened

Eric Choupo-Moting’s goal was not enough for the holders, who went out on the away goals rule after another stunning end-to-end contest

In the other tie, Chelsea went through against Porto as expected, though they were beaten 1-0 on the night. They’ll play Real Madrid or Liverpool in the semis.

Related: Chelsea v Porto: Champions League quarter-final, second leg – live!

Blimey. After all that, Paris Saint-Germain will play Manchester City or Borussia Dortmund in the semis. If this estimable, wildly emotional victory doesn’t make them believe they can win the Champions League, nothing ever will.

PSG have put the holders Bayern out in one of the greatest European quarter-finals of all time. Neymar is growling with delight, Mbappe smiling, and Mauricio Pochettino is embracing all his players with considerable feeling. There is so much mutual respect in the post-match hugs and handshakes between the two sets of players. It was a stunning game - not quite as eventful as last week, but even more dramatic because so much was at stake.


90+3 min Sane twists Bakker inside out again, this time in the area, but he picks the wrong cross and Navas stretches to claim at the near post.

90+2 min Hernandez makes a superb last-ditch tackle on Neymar, who looked set to finally score the goal he has threatened all night. Mbappe was square, desperate for a pass, but Hernandez did so well to partially block it off and make Neymar’s mind up for him.

90+1 min Sane’s inswinging cross is headed miles wide by Coman, who had to jump towards the ball at a very awkward angle. I think he was trying to knock it square to Musiala.

90 min Herrera is booked. Four minutes of added time.

89 min PSG are so close to an immense, triumphant defeat. Mbappe breaks one on one with Hernandez down the left, turns and plays the ball infield for Neymar, who is haring up in support with no Bayern outfield players near him. Neuer sprints outside his area and slides to poke the ball away from Neymar.

88 min Another PSG change: Angel Di Maria, who has had a terrific game, is replaced by Ander Herrera.

87 min Javi Martinez is playing as a centre forward.

86 min After a bit of pinball in the PSG area, Muller’s low shot is blocked by Kimpembe. The flag went up soon after, though whether that was for an offside before or after Muller’s shot I’ve no idea. It was a good chance for Muller: 12 yards out, in space, with the ball rolled slowly back towards him.

86 min “It’s been maligned, but situations like this for me show the value of the away goals rule,” says Paul McGrory. “A goal for Munich and the swing is huge, PSG go from in to out with no inbetween. Can’t think of another scenario in football where the draw or extra time is so removed, and you can see it affect the tension and intensity of the game.”

Yep. I feel slightly guilty for loving it, but I love it.

85 min A slightly strange Bayern substitution: Javi Martinez is on for Choupo-Moting.

84 min Coman’s shot deflects behind for a corner. The level of desperation is quite something.

83 min AT THE OTHER BLOODY END, Di Maria cuts inside on the edge of the area and has a shot blocked.

82 min: So close from Sane! He twisted Bakker inside out, a textbook bit of skill, and guided a cross-shot just wide of the far post. Muller was desperate for a square ball but Sane hedged his bets with the cross-shot.

81 min A free-kick to Bayern on the left wing. Kimmich’s dangerous inswinger is headed up in the air by a PSG defender, and then a panicked Navas runs into his own man Paredes and flattens him. The referee, bizarrely, gives a free-kick against Bayern for the foul by the PSG goalkeeper Navas on the PSG midfielder Paredes.

79 min Mbappe threatens to go through again, this time legitimately, and Hernandez does superbly to dispossess him.

78 min: Mbappe has a goal disallowed! He was put through by Neymar, just past the halfway line, and charged through on Neuer before roofing the ball spectacularly. Then the flag went up, and VAR confirmed it was the correct decision.

77 min Neymar spins a majestic pass out to Kean with the outside of his left foot. He runs confidently at Pavard in the area ... and then wallops the ball into orbit.

76 min Lots of Bayern pressure now. You’d hope so, in the circumstances.

74 min Boateng fouls Neymar on the halfway line. One thing Neymar has done very well tonight, apart from hit the woodwork, is to draw fouls, with each one eating up time and stalling Bayern’s momentum.

74 min Normally in this situation, the popular cliche is ‘Bayern will get one chance, it’s up to them to take it’. But in this game, I’m tempted to say that each team will get at least five more chances.

73 min A PSG change: Julian Draxler off, Moise Kean on.

72 min “All this ‘attacking play’ and ‘quality’ and ‘excitement’ is all well and good,” says Matt Dony, “but it’s no 2003 final, is it? Proper, pure football.”

Related: Juventus 0 - 0 Milan (aet; Milan won 3-2 on penalties)

71 min The marvellous Jamal Musiala comes on to replace Alphonso Davies. That means Alaba will go to left-back.

69 min Sane’s very deep cross from the right hangs in the air forever on its way to the unmarked Coman.He cushions a careful header into the six-yard box, where Paredes makes a desperate clearance just in front of ... a Bayern player, I haven’t a clue who it was and I’m not rewinding it because I’ll probably miss four goals.

69 min Mbappe concedes a corner, which sums up how hard PSG are working defensively, and how desperate they are to see this through. Nothing comes of the corner.

68 min Muller is booked for a late tackle on Paredes, who takes the opportunity to waste 20 seconds. Every little helps.

66 min The ghosts of Champions League past must be running riot in the heads of the PSG players. But if they get through this, they’ll feel like they beat anyone and finally win the bloody thing.

65 min Draxler’s dangerous low cross is claimed well by Neuer.

63 min Choupo-Moting is penalised for fouling Dagba as they jumped for a deep cross. That looked like a 50/50 call, and had the referee not blown his whistle, Coman would have had a clear shot from 10 yards.

62 min: Chance for Bayern! Sane cuts inside Bakker and angles a stunning pass into the area for Muller, who runs on the blind side of Kimpembe and twists to hit a first-time shot that is crucially smothered by Navas. The ball rebounds off Muller and behind for a goalkick. If Navas was at fault for the goal, he’s partially made up for it with two or three terrific saves since.

61 min Can’t we just put them both through, like they do in Masterchef?

60 min A reminder, as if you need one, that PSG are ahead on the away goals rule.

59 min Mitchel Bakker replaces Diallo at left-back.

58 min “Please pass along to Mr. Bommen that if he can stand listening to Spanish commentary, Champions League games can be watched over the air on Univision,” says Matt Burtz (and a few others - thanks).

57 min An injury blow for PSG. Abdou Diallo’s left hamstring can take no more, and he’s going to have to come off.

55 min Dagba is booked for fouling Coman.

53 min: GLORIOUS BLOODY FOOTBALL SKILL AND DRAMA! Mbappe, on the left edge of the area, drives a superb angled pass to Di Maria, eight yards from goal at the far post. He controls it on the chest, then shifts it away from Davies in the same movement. Neuer flies out so Di Maria pokes the ball through his legs and across the face of goal, where the stretching Neymar is this close to putting it into the empty net. “That’s a Paul Gascoigne moment,” says the BT Sport commentator Paul Dempsey. Indeed it was. The skill from Di Maria was glorious.

53 min Alaba is booked for pulling back Neymar. He wasn’t on a card going into the game.

52 min I feel like I’ve used the phrase ‘at the other end’ more in this tie than ever before, such is the speed with which the game moves from one end to the other. Talking of which, at the other end Coman shoots high and wide from 25 yards.

52 min Neuer charges from his area to beat Mbappe to yet another through ball. To say Bayern are living on the edge is an appreciable understatement.

50 min At the other end, Pavard’s cross deflects behind for a corner. The pace is spectacular; it’s like a basketball game being played at 1.5x speed. Early doors and all, but this has to be up there with the greatest European Cup quarter-finals ever played.

Related: The Joy of Six: European Cup quarter-finals

49 min A PSG free-kick is half cleared to Paredes, 35 yards from goal. He flips a nice pass over the defence to Neymar, who takes it down elegantly on the chest and lifts a half-volley over the bar. That was a really tough chance, for most people anyway.

47 min Sane’s fast, flat cross just evades the head of Muller, stooping forward at the near post. Choupo-Moting, at the far post, can’t kill an awkward ball and it eventually rebounds to the edge of the area. Alaba picks up possession and sweeps a fine shot just wide of the far post. This is deliciously tense.

47 min “Not sure how you can call that Navas save a mistake before Choupo-Oting headed it in,” says Robert Lin. “He did incredibly well just to keep out the shot in the first place. Why Alaba was alone in eight yards out is the real question. Navas is the only reason PSG are still in this tie.”

You might be right Mrs Navas, I’ll have another look. We barely get time to look at a replay, never mind form a watertight opinion, when the game is this eventful.

46 min Peep peep!

“I’m just wondering who you had to kiss up to at Guardian Towers to get this MBM,” says Espen Bommen. “You are actually getting PAID to watch this! Over here in the US it’s on a streaming channel so I am paying $10 a month for basically just the Champions League. This game is worth every penny!!”

We’re very lucky, it’s true, but working in the MBM bunker isn’t without its downsides.

Half-time reading

Related: David Squires on … how a streaker tried to end the great Alexander-Arnold Wars

That was another mesmeric 45 minutes. Neymar hit the post twice and the bar for PSG, who were terrifyingly incisive on the break. Bayern smothered PSG and created plenty of half and three-quarter chances before the much maligned Eric Choupo-Moting headed them in front after a mistake from Keylor Navas. PSG are still on course for the semi-finals, just. More, please!

45+2 min: Sane misses an excellent chance! He broke dangerously into the area, hugging the ball on his left as Diallo (I think) backpedalled. Eventually he opened his body to steer a curling shot towards the far corner. At least that was the plan: it was straight at Navas and he saved comfortably.

45 min Two minutes of added time. CAN WE NOT MAKE IT TWO YEARS PLEASE.

45 min The resulting corner leads to a brief game of head tennis in the PSG area. They really need half-time.

44 min PSG are still ahead in the tie, but only on the away goals rule. Alaba tries to change that with a sweet, swirling strike from 25 yards that is pushed away by the flying Navas. That’s a fine save.

42 min Mbappe beats two defenders with a series of stepovers and drags a low shot just wide of the far post. The referee had blown for something, I think obstruction by Neymar on a Bayern defender, so it wouldn’t have counted.

It came down the Bayern left, where Coman - who has had a great first half - beat Dagba and crossed into the middle. Muller steered the bouncing ball deftly into the path of Alaba, whose low shot from eight yards was saved by Navas. But he could only spoon the ball up in the air, and Choupo-Moting muscled Kimpembe out of the way and headed into the net from close range. That’s a mistake from Navas.

And now Bayern have taken the lead!

39 min: Now Neymar hits the post! This is extraordinary. Neymar played a fine pass to release Mbappe, who gave it back to Neymar in the area. He slid a low shot that beat Neuer and hit the post. I’d love to describe it in more detail, but there’s no time because...

39 min Bayern don’t have many attacking options on the bench, just Jamal Musiala really. They are starting to look a little desperate.

37 min: Neymar hits the bar! Ah that was sheer delightful football. Di Maria’s free-kick was headed away to Neymar, 25 yards out in the inside-left channel. He chopped the ball behind his standing leg to beat Coman, then moved inside on his right foot and shaped a delicious curling shot that hit the top of the bar.

36 min Boateng is penalised for roughhousing Mbappe on the left wing. Bayern haven’t a clue how to defend against him.

35 min Replays suggest that Neymar shot’s in fact hit the post. I’m not sure whether Neuer got a touch as well - and either way I think he had it covered - but it definitely hit the post.

34 min Neuer denies Neymar for the third time tonight. Neymar hypnotised Hernandez on the edge of the area with a series of stepovers, then shifted the ball inside and crashed a left-footed shot towards the near post. Neuer plunged to his left to push it away.

34 min This is a good spell for PSG, their best of the match.

32 min Mbappe, just inside the Bayern half, is wrongly flagged offside after being put through on the right wing by Di Maria. It’s hard to see Mbappe going the full 90 minutes without getting a one on one.

31 min This is so good. The pace of the game is barely legal.

28 min Neymar beats Hernandez with a brilliant turn, then falls over and appeals for a penalty. Both players were pulling each other’s shirts, so the referee gives nothing.

27 min: Brilliant save from Neuer! A stunning counter-attack from PSG almost ends in a goal. Di Maria curled a crisp pass down the left to Mbappe, who beat the offside trap and played a superb square ball to the unmarked Neymar on the other side of the area. Neuer charged from his line to block the shot. Mbappe needed eyes in the side of his head to see that pass.

27 min Now Kimmich drives just wide from 20 yards after Bayern win the ball high up the field. His scream of frustration tells you that it was a pretty decent opportunity. PSG really need a breather, or a goal.

26 min A majestic flick from Choupo-Moting finds Sane, charging infield from the right. He manipulates the ball nicely on the run but then curls tamely wide from 20 yards. That was a decent chance.

25 min Danilo makes two important clearances in the space of 10 seconds. Bayern are applying a helluva lot of pressure now.

23 min Coman, who has started superbly, wins the ball 30 yards from the PSG goal and finds Muller on the left of the penalty area. His low cross is cleared. After a slowish start, this is beginning to engage the viscera.

22 min Coman beats Dagba with a lovely feint and stabs a cross that hits Danilo and goes behind for a corner. I think the ball hit his arm, though it was down by his side and there’s no VAR interruption. Kimmich’s corner is headed away by Mbappe. Bayern are starting to rev up.

21 min “With all due respect to Princes,” begins Peter Oh, “could the PSG ground be renamed Parc des Bus, just for today?”

19 min Kimmich sprays a terrific pass out to Coman on the left. He plays in the overlapping Davies, whose cutback misses everyone at the near post. The ball comes to Kimmich, backing up the play on the edge of the area, but his touch is slightly too heavy. PSG break terrifyingly, three on three, but Di Maria’s scoop over the defence runs through to Neuer.

18 min Di Maria is receiving treatment after being fouled by Davies. He’s in quite a lot of pain but is going to continue.

15 min Davies zips infield and finds Choupo-Moting, whose touch lets him down on the edge of the area. He looks like a man who is painfully aware of who he is replacing.

13 min It’s been a relatively comfortable start for PSG. Bayern have had their moments but there hasn’t been the onslaught that Mauricio Pochettino would have feared. Yet.

11 min “Gotta love those Sopranos malapropisms (see 19.28),” says Michal Pac Pomarnacki. “My favourite one is Little Carmine’s ‘the sacred and the propane’ closely followed by Bobby’s ‘Quasimodo predicted all this’.”

9 min At the other end, Mbappe scorches past Pavard and cuts the ball back towards Neymar at the near post. Hernandez gets there first, but his clearance hits Kimmich and rebounds towards Neymar on the six-yard line. His shot on the turn is very well smothered by Neuer.

9 min Bayern are looking dangerous. Sane cuts inside from the right, past three players, and angles a pass to Coman on the left side of the area. His first-time cross is poor and PSG clear, for about two seconds. Kimmich picks up the loose ball and floats it into the area, where Muller arrives and tries to find Choupo Moting with a clever backheader. He gets too much on it and Navas claims.

7 min Coman runs onto a long ball down the left and plays it back to Choupo-Moting just inside the area. He dithers for half a second and is crowded out by PSG defenders. That wasn’t a bad opportunity.

6 min Bayern are trying to pin PSG back, as they did for most of the first leg. The full-backs Davies and Pavard have already had plenty of the ball in the final third.

3 min Neymar plays the ball down the right wing to Mbappe, who looks offside but is allowed to continue and leaves everyone in his slipstream. He cuts into the area and drives a low shot across the face of goal. The angle was really tight, so it wasn’t much of a chance.

1 min Kimmich, who will miss the first leg of the semi-final if he is booked, leaves an early one on Paredes.

1 min Peep peep! Bayern kick off from left to right. Both teams are wearing their home strips.

The players stand to attention for the Champions League theme. Most shift on the spot; Kylian Mbappe stares straight ahead, like the killer he is. What a bloody footballer.

“Prediction, Rob?” says John Ryan. “I see a PSG win; in games like this where everyone is focusing on one team (here Bayern) needing to win and how, it so often ends up being the other (here PSG) who ends up strolling it...”

If Bayern don’t pick up any more injuries, I think they’ll do it. But - newsflash - I don’t really have a clue.

“At 63, and a Spurs supporter since 1967, I became a PSG fan the moment Poch took over,” writes Michael A. “I will never forgive Levy for not backing him and hiring Jose. Wouldn’t it be the coldest meal ever served should Poch win the CL?”

That’s what they say.

Pre-match reading

Related: Pochettino urges PSG to boost home form in Bayern Munich test

PSG make one change from the first leg: Leandro Paredes, available again after suspension, replaces the injured Marquinhos. Danilo, who started in midfield in Munich, will move into the back four. Marco Verratti is on the bench after recovering from Covid.

Bayern have made two changes, both enforced. The injured Niklas Sule and Leon Goretzka are replaced by Alphonso Davies and Jerome Boateng. That means David Alaba will move into midfield alongside Joshua Kimmich. Bayern’s injury list is such that they have only seven substitutes, most of them very inexperienced.

The permutations

Bayern need to win by two clear goals, or by any margin having scored at least four. Unlikely, but not beyond the realms given last week’s excitement.

Hello and welcome to live coverage of Paris Saint-Germain v Bayern Munich from the Parc des Princes. If this game is half as entertaining as the first leg, then it’ll be 50 per cent as exciting. That match, which ended 3-2 to PSG, was a classic of its kind; a week later I am still struggling to recall a game with so few lulls in the action.

Tonight’s match could be even more exhilarating, mainly because the stakes are higher. There are no second chances; by 11pm tonight, one of the favourites will be out of the Champions League. And last week’s result means that, unless we get to the stage where Bayern lead 3-2 tonight, the tie will never be level. One of the teams will always need a goal (or two, in Bayern’s case, as things stand) to avoid elimination.

Continue reading...

Chelsea v Porto: Champions League quarter-final, second leg – live!

Stay tuned. We’ve still got post-match reaction from Chelsea manager Tommy T and a match report from Sid Lowe to come.

Meanwhile in Paris: Holders Bayern Munich have gone out, eliminated by Paris Saint-Germain on away goals after a 1-0 win for the German side in the second leg.

Related: PSG 0-1 Bayern Munich (agg: 3-3, PSG win on away goals): Champions League quarter-final, second leg – live!

It was not a good game. But Chelsea will not care. Mehdi Taremi gave them a late scare, leaping high to score with a shinned right-foot bicycle kick into the top corner from 12 yards after connecting with a Nanu cross from the right. It was the one moment of high quality in a fairly dreary contest in which Porto were thoroughly underwhelming. It’s job done for Chelsea, who will face Real Madrid or Liverpool in the last four.

Peep! Peep! Peeeeeeeeep! It’s all over in Seville, where Chelsea have advanced to the semi-finals of the Champions League with a minimum of fuss.

90 +4 min: Scrap that, he shinned it. It’s a 6.2 on the Sinclair Spectrum.

Porto score: Taremi scores with an astonishing overhead kick. It’s an 8.8 on the Sinclair Spectrum but I’d need to see it again.

90+3 min: Through on goal with only Marchesin to beat, Pulisic takes one touch too many and allows the goalkeeper to save at his feet.

90+2 min: Chelsea substitution: Olivier Giroud on for Kai Havertz.

89 min: Pulisic is getting battered here ... and not in a good way. He’s on the deck again after being fouled once again. I didn’t spot the perpetrator on this occasion. We’ll have four minutes worth of extras.

89 min: And another, as they play down the clock keeping the ball by the corner flag.

88 min: Luis Diaz is booked for a foul on Pulisic. From the free-kick, Chelsea win a corner.

87 min: Pulisic tries to put Ziyech in behind with a ball into space from inside his own half. It’s a tired effort that’s nowhere near the substitute.

85 min: Chelsea substitution: Hakim Ziyech on for Mason Mount.

83 min: Porto substitution: Sergio Oliveira off, Fabio Vieira on.

82 min: This has been very disappointing from Porto, who were a lot better in the first leg. I think Chelsea may have, even on a subconsious level, underestimated them a little in that game, a mistake they weren’t going to make twice.

81 min: Time to start time-wasting, Chelsea. Thiago Silva obliges, going down in his own box under no pressure from anyone. There’s a pause as he receives treatment.

80 min: From that one, Rudiger puts it out for a third in quick succession at the near post. Oliveira sends the ball in but it ends up in the arms of Benjamin Mendy. Chelsea look like they could comfortably defend these set pieces all night.

79 min: From that corner, Porto win another – Reece James putting the ball out.

77 min: Marchesin is forced to the edge of his box to gather a through ball. Porto really need to get the collective finger out - they’ve been fairly pedestrian and very toothless, considering what’s at stake here. They win a corner.

75 min: Porto triple-substitution: Nanu, Luis Diaz and Evanilson on for Wilson Manata, Jesus Corona and Moussa Marega.

74 min: Corona is booked for a pull on the shirt of Jorginho.

73 min: There’s a triple-substitution “ahoy” from Porto. Thiago Silva sticks out a leg and puts a Chancel Mbemba cross into the Chelsea penalty area out of play. That looks like it could have gone anywhere.

72 min: Mendy shepherds the ball out of play under pressure from Taremi as the striker chases a long ball from the back in vain.

69 min: Pepe gives the ball away with a loose pass, prompting Kante to ping the ball forward for Pulisic. His first touch lets him down, taking him wide of the Porto goal, where Pepe makes amends for his original error by relieving him of the ball.

67 min: Manafa loses the ball and Chelsea break on the counter. Manafa recovers well enough to foul Pulisic and put a stop to his gallop but avoids a booking.

64 min: Taremi directs a header from about 12 yards towards the bottom corner. Benjamin Mendy saves. There wasn’t much pace on the looping cross from Corona, so the substitute was unable to get much venom behind his effort.

63 min: Porto substitution: Mehdi Taremi on for Marko Grujic - a striker with 15 goals to his name this season on for a midfielder.

62 min: Pepe and Sanusi combine down the left at pace but the full-back’s cross is too close to Benjamin Mendy, who grabs it gratefully.

61 min: Scrappiness abound with little of note to report. It looks like Porto are preparing to make a change.

58 min: Good defending from Wilson Manafa, who gets across to put in a stout block on Mason Mount as the Chelsea midfielder bore down on goal from the inside left and pulled the trigger. On the touchline, Porto manager Sergio Conceciao gets booked, presumably for dissent.

55 min: Now Chelsea put Porto under the cosh for a bit, also without threatening the opposition goal.

54 min: Pulisic fails to react quickly enough to steer a high velocity Ben Chilwell pull-back goalwards. He shins it with his right peg and the ball drifts harmlessly wide.

53 min: Reece James repels another Porto attrack, putting the ball out of play for a throw-in. Chelsea are under sustained pressure here but Porto still haven’t had a shot on target.

52 min: Porto win two corners in quick succession. Oliveira tries to pick out Pepe at the near post with the second one but Antonio Rudiger clears with a header.

49 min: While you wouldn’t say Porto have been playing with the handbrake on, at some point they’re going to have cut loose and throw caution to the wind. If theydo happen to score twice, which is looking unlikely, they would go into extra time as the “away” team with the added value that brings to any goals they might score in the extra half-hour. Chelsea, by contrast, would not enjoy the advantage of having a “home” crowd cheering them on for those extra 30 minutes. It’s not really fair, is it?

47 min: Neat work in a confined area from Chilwell and Kante over by the touchline by the halfway line keeps the ball in play as Chelsea try to get forward.

46 min: Play resumes with no changes in personnel on either side. Almost immediately, Sergio Oliveira is booked for a foul on Pulisic. He’s caught bang to rights but shakes his head sadly at referee Clement Turpin’s apparent impetuousness.

Peep! It’s all sqaure at the break, a scrappy half drawing to a close. Porto had the pick of what few chances there were, with the topically named Jesus Corona failing to capitalise on a Benjamin Mendy error before snatching at a presentable opportunity after good work by Chancel Mbemba, only to send the ball sailing over the bar. Chelsea remain in the box seat.

45 min: A Sergio Oliveira header towards the edge of the Chelsea box is cleared by Cesar Azpilicueta.

42 min: The game continues to be punctuated by one foul after another. It’s not a great spectacle but no Chelsea fans watching it will mind.

40 min: Elsewhere in the Champions League, Bayern Munich have just gone ahead against Paris Saint-Germain, with Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting bundling home a header from about one yard out. It’s 3-3 on aggregate in that one but PSG still have the advantage on away goals.

39 min: More niggle as Pepe fouls Pulisic in the centre-circle.

38 min: Rudiger gives the ball away to Grujic, who advances on the Chelsea penalty area. He runs into traffic and the ball is cleared.

37 min: The deadlock remains unbroken with Chelsea holding a two-goal aggregate lead. Uribe tries to halve the deficit from distance but his low and fairly feeble effort is blocked.

34 min: Chancel Mbemba it was with the pass for Corona and it was a beauty that deserved a more composed and accurate finish.

32 min: Chance! Jesus Corona manages to give Ben Chilwell the slip, spinning the defneder to get on a pass from deep. His first touch is good and he attempts to blast the ball past Benjamin Mendy from 10 yards or so but balloons it over the bar. He had more time than he realised to pick his spot and should have scored.

31 min: Picked out by an excellent pass from Jorginho, Kante over hits his long diagonal towards Ben Chilwell. Goal kick for Porto.

30 min: Pepe is the latest go down in a heap, fouled by Pulisic. This is very, very scrappy, which will suit Chelsea just fine.

27 min: Pepe makes a crucial block, cutting out a Havertz cross from the right with Chelsea attacking on the break and Mount waiting in the centre. The ball finds its way back to Havertz, who attempts to cross again. It’s Pepe to the rescue again, this time conceding a corner. It’s taken and Porto struggle to clear their lines until the ball goes out for a throw-in off Ben Chilwell.

25 min: Oliveira is penalised for a foul on Pulisic in a game that has plenty of side-niggle going on.

24 min: A quarter of the way through the game and both teams will be fairly satisfied with their evening’s work so far. Porto have had the upper hand without laying much of a glove on Chelsea, who are defending well and looking dangerous on the break.

21 min: Jesus Corona is flat on his back down near the corner flag after running into Jorginho. He’ll live.

19 min: Otavio sends the ball into the Chelsea penalty area, where Grujic gets his head to it. Ben Chilwell clears at the back post and Chelsea attack on the break with Kante on the ball. He holds the ball up well and Reece James ends up being teed up on the edge of the box by Mason Mount. He pulls a poor effort well wide.

18 min: Throw-in for Porto deep in CHelsea territory after Thiago Silva put the ball out. It’s taken and Marega wins a corner off Rudiger.

16 min: Porto have looked more threatening than Chelsea in these early stages, without creating any particularly good chances. A goal for the Portuguese side would really put the cat among the pigeons. Or indeed, the swallows.

15 min: The camera cuts to Thomas Tuchel on the Chelsea bench, where he looks to be having quite the animated conversation with himself.

13 min: Otavio is fouled by Jorginho, who lunges in to stop him advancing up the field. Nothing comes of the free-kick and moments later, Havertz is penalised for a foul on Pepe, wide on the right, a long way out.

11 min: From 12 yards out and a tight angle, Jesus Corona tries to sidefoot into an empty net after a hideous piece of miscontrol from Benjamin Mendy as he fielded a backpass. Jorginho is on hand to get a crucial deflection. The ball goes out for a corner, from which nothing comes.

10 min: Free-kick for Porto after a Pulisic foul on Sergio Oliveiro in the centre-circle.

9 min: Reece James twists and turns under pressure from Zaidu Sanussi out on the right flank. He eventually gets a cross in, but it’s straight into the hands of Marchesin at the near post.

7 min: Mason Mount picks up the ball and shuffles and shimmies towards the edge of the Porto penalty area. He unleashes a shot which is deflected off a defender.

6 min: Porto right-back Wilson Manafa slings a cross to the far post, where Otavio and Uribe try to link up. The ball rolls wide.

5 min: Moussa Marega has a scuffed shot from a tight angle blocked after being teed up by Mateus Uribe. Porto have started well.

3 min: Kai Havertz goes to ground holding the back of his head after contesting a high ball with Pepe. It was a 50-50 challenge, although Pepe did sort of lead with his arm.

2 min: N’Golo Kante breaks up a Porto attack on the edge of Chelsea’s penalty area and sends his team on their way. A long diagonal ball is playeed towards Reece James on the right flank but he’s unable to keep it in play.

1 min: Agustin Marchesin gets an early touch in the Porto goal, fielding a backpass comfortably under pressure. The sound of swallows screeching is now the only thing I can hear.

1 min: Chelsea get the ball rolling, their players wearing blue shirts and shorts with white socks. Porto’s wear white shirts and shorts with blue socks.

Crikey! You can actually hear the shrill tweeting of said swallows on the pitchside microphones. Sounds like quite the invasion.

Not long now: With each skipper brandishing a club pennant, Cesar Azpilicueta and Pepe lead their respective sides out behind referee Clement Turpin and his team of match officials on a warm night in Seville.

According to Sid Lowe, the Guardian’s man in the stadium, there are lots of bugs making fizzing around making him itchy, but there’s a flight of swallows on hand to gobble them up. The last of the pre-match formalities get under way and kick-off is not too far away.

Thomas Tuchel speaks: He tells BT Sport that Mateo Kovacic picked up a light injury in training yesterday and is out. He also reveals that Andreas Christensen is not fully recovered from the muscle injury he sustained in the first leg. “We have Thiago back but not too many changes because we are on a good run and the squad feels confident that this is the moment to go,” he says.

BT Sport: Rio Ferdinand and Joe Cole are the studio pundits tonight, in the company of Gary Lineker, and it doesn’t seem to have crossed any of their minds that Chelsea might actually go out tonight.

Of course everything is in the London side’s favour ahead of kick-off, but I thought Porto were fairly unlucky to lose 2-0 last week. They’re a good team and I have a feeling they might give Chelsea plenty to think about, particularly if they can score first. Whoever does go through will face Liverpool or Real Madrid in the semi-finals.

Those teams: No big surprises in the Chelsea side, who will line up in a 3-4-3 with Kai Havertz, presumably, in a kind of floating False Nine role.

Of course it is dangerous to presume anything, as I thought Mehdi Taremi was a certainty to start for Porto, but he is on the bench. On loan from Liverpool, Marko Grujic keeps his place in midfield and local paper the Echo reported today that the 25-year-old Serbian has no shortage of admirers in Serie A and the Bundesliga. Sergio Oliveira, as expect, starts.

Chelsea: Mendy, Azpilicueta, Thiago Silva, Rudiger, James, Jorginho, Kante, Chilwell, Mount, Havertz, Pulisic

Subs: Caballero, Kepa, Christensen, Zouma, Alonso, Emerson, Hudson-Odoi, Ziyech, Abraham, Giroud, Werner

Kai Havertz, Christian Pulisic, Mason Mount and Thiago Silva start for Chelsea. We’ll have the full line-ups for you very shortly.

Thomas Tuchel speaks: “We don’t approach games like this or change the approach,” said the Chelsea manager, upon being asked if his side would be more passive tonight, considering their lead. “For us it is important that we focus on us, play the best game possible as this increases the chances to have a result. In terms of a result, it is easier for Porto because they need to score three goals to get through, for them if it is clear. For us, if we start in this way then we could completely lose our heads. I hope we embrace the challenge and feel it.”

Sergio Conceicao speaks: “We have to be a compact, cohesive team,” said Porto’s manager, when asked how his side would approach the game. “We have to score goals, but also to avoid conceding. We were good in the first leg, but not very good; if we were, we would have won. We will try to improve on what was a good team performance.

Related: Thomas Tuchel tells Chelsea to focus on the present and seal progress past Porto

Chelsea have a full squad to choose from, which is no mean feat at this point in a gruelling season, although Andreas Christensen is a doubt due to a tight hamstring. Out of form and favour, Tammy Abraham was also a doubt but is expected to be fit if required.

Seville’s Ramon Sanchez-Pizjuan Stadium is the venue as the players of Chelsea and Porto reconvene for the second leg of their Champions League quarter-final. Chelsea are the “home” team tonight and carry a two-goal advantage into the second leg but Porto can take heart from a decent performance in defeat, despite the absence through suspension of arguably their two best attackers, Sérgio Oliveira and Mehdi Taremi.

Both players are expected to line up tonight and while Chelsea have a crucial advantage they will be well aware theirs is only a job half-done. Kick-off in Seville is at 8pm, but stay tuned in the meantime for team news and build-up.

Related: Mason Mount’s star turn and Chilwell give Chelsea advantage over Porto

Continue reading...

We need to be 100% against Real Madrid, Jürgen Klopp tells Liverpool

  • Klopp: ‘We cannot just take comebacks for granted’
  • Liverpool play at Anfield after losing quarter-final first leg 3-1

Jürgen Klopp has said Liverpool must deliver the perfect performance and not rely on their reputation for rousing Anfield comebacks to overcome Real Madrid in their Champions League quarter-final.

Liverpool require another European recovery to salvage hopes of a third Champions League final in four seasons after last week’s 3-1 defeat in Spain. The second leg takes place on the fifth anniversary of Liverpool’s Europa League quarter-final comeback against Borussia Dortmund, when Dejan Lovren’s stoppage-time header sealed a 5-4 aggregate win after the Reds trailed 4-2 overall in the 66th minute.

Related: Vinícius Júnior double for Real Madrid punishes careless Liverpool in first leg

Related: Liverpool stage sensational comeback to beat Barcelona and reach final

Continue reading...

‘I trust them’: Guardiola backs City to pass Dortmund test and reach last four

  • Manchester City take 2-1 lead into the second leg in Germany
  • ‘We deserve to be in the position we are,’ says Guardiola

Pep Guardiola admits to being unsure whether Manchester City are now better equipped to handle difficult moments in their Champions League quarter-final second leg at Borussia Dortmund on Wednesday but stated he would be “crazy” not to trust his players after 27 wins from the past 29 games.

City hold a 2-1 advantage as they seek to progress to the semi-finals for the first time under Guardiola. The manager’s team have been knocked out at this stage in the past three seasons: by Liverpool (5-1 on aggregate), Tottenham (4-4, on away goals) and Lyon (3-1).

Related: Jadon Sancho remains sidelined as former side Man City visit Dortmund

Related: ‘Direct discrimination’: extremely vulnerable fans barred from Carabao Cup final

Continue reading...

Jadon Sancho remains sidelined as former side Man City visit Dortmund

  • Englishman out of Champions League quarter-final second leg
  • Marco Reus and Mats Hummels also doubts for German side

Jadon Sancho has been ruled out of Borussia Dortmund’s Champions League quarter-final second leg against his former club Manchester City. The England winger is back in training after six weeks out with a thigh injury but the match at Signal Iduna Park on Wednesday comes too soon.

The German side go into the game looking to overturn a 2-1 deficit after defeat against the Premier League leaders in the first leg at the Etihad Stadium last week.

Related: Manchester City set to sign ‘new Neymar’ Kayky from Fluminense

Continue reading...

Thomas Tuchel tells Chelsea to focus on the present and seal progress past Porto

  • Chelsea won Champions League quarter-final first leg 2-0
  • Tuchel: ‘There is no match other than the next game’

Thomas Tuchel has warned Chelsea that they will be in danger of squandering their commanding 2-0 lead over Porto if they lose themselves in dreams of winning the Champions League.

Given Tuchel’s history in this competition, it is unsurprising he is taking nothing for granted before returning to Seville for the second leg of his side’s quarter-final against Porto on Tuesday night. Chelsea’s manager famously lost from this position two years ago, going out in the last 16 to a weakened Manchester United on away goals, and knows from bitter experience the tie is not over yet.

Related: Mason Mount’s star turn and Chilwell give Chelsea advantage over Porto

Related: Manchester United floor PSG as Marcus Rashford’s late penalty caps comeback

Related: Kai Havertz stars as free-flowing Chelsea steamroller Crystal Palace

Continue reading...

Pochettino urges PSG to boost home form in Bayern Munich test

  • ‘I agree we’ve been better away from home,’ says manager
  • Marquinhos out of squad with adductor muscle injury

Mauricio Pochettino has said Paris Saint-Germain must show “solidarity and solidity” if they are to knock Bayern Munich, the holders, out of the Champions League, despite leading 3-2 from the away leg of their quarter-final.

After PSG’s victory at the Allianz Arena last week, the former Tottenham manager is hoping his team’s home form will match their away performances on Tuesday. The French champions advanced from the last 16 with a 4-1 away win in the first leg against Barcelona before a 1-1 draw in the return leg at the Parc des Princes. In Ligue 1, their best display of the season came last month in a 4-2 win at Lyon, which was followed nine days ago by a 1-0 home defeat against Lille.

Related: Bayern v PSG was pure footballing fun – until you delve beneath the thrills | Jonathan Wilson

Related: Mbappé urges PSG teammates to repeat display against Bayern Munich

Continue reading...

Bayern v PSG was pure footballing fun – until you delve beneath the thrills | Jonathan Wilson

Dominant super-rich elite forget how to defend but proposed new Champions League would not ensure endless excitement

After the rush of exhilaration, the comedown. Paris Saint-Germain’s 3-2 win away to Bayern Munich on Wednesday was extraordinary, full of high-tempo drama, of brilliant players doing brilliant things – so long as it wasn’t defending. There were great goals, great saves, great crosses, injuries all over the place, and by the time it was over, the eternal nearly men of PSG had ended the European champions’ 19-game unbeaten run in the competition. And yet in the cold light of morning, it’s perhaps impossible not to feel a slight qualm: it was magnificent, but was it football?

It was a superior example of the type, but this was a game typical of the latter stages of today’s Champions League. After the dutiful slog of the group stages, the frenzied bacchanal of the knockouts. This is the upside of the financial structure of modern football. Create a small elite of super-rich clubs so they can concentrate the best players at a handful of franchises and this is the sort of quality that can ensue.

Related: Mbappé urges PSG teammates to repeat display against Bayern Munich

Continue reading...

Thomas Tuchel delighted at Chelsea’s response to West Brom setback

  • Chelsea beat Porto in Champions League quarter-final first leg
  • West Brom had inflicted first defeat under Tuchel at weekend

A happy Thomas Tuchel praised Chelsea’s reaction to adversity after they took a potentially decisive 2-0 win from the away leg of their Champions League quarter-final tie against Porto, saying their response to a shock weekend defeat by West Brom will unite his players.

Well-taken goals from Mason Mount and Ben Chilwell, the first either player had scored in this competition, secured an ultimately comfortable victory in Seville even if Tuchel accepted Chelsea rarely hit full flow. There had been pressure to bounce back after the 5-2 setback on Saturday, which was the German’s first defeat since taking over and came to look even more consequential when Antonio Rüdiger and Kepa Arrizabalaga clashed in training the following the following day.

Related: Mason Mount forces ‘honest scuffler’ critics to eat their words | Jacob Steinberg

Continue reading...

Mbappé urges PSG teammates to repeat display against Bayern Munich

  • French side won 3-2 in Champions League quarter-final first leg
  • Thomas Müller laments his side’s failure to score more goals

Kylian Mbappé urged his teammates to “play again like a team” after the forward scored twice for Paris Saint-Germain to steer the visitors to a 3-2 victory against the Champions League holders Bayern Munich in their quarter-final first leg.

Mbappé scored his eighth goal of the competition in the 68th minute after Eric-Maxim Choupo-Moting in the 37th and Thomas Müller on the hour had cancelled out a two-goal PSG lead.

Related: Bayern Munich 2-3 PSG: Champions League quarter-final – as it happened

Continue reading...

Mason Mount forces ‘honest scuffler’ critics to eat their words | Jacob Steinberg

The Chelsea midfielder demonstrated his full range of qualities: good movement, quick thinking and deft footwork in the Champions League win over Porto

A common misconception about Mason Mount is that he saves his best work for off the ball, winning over his managers by being a very well behaved boy when his team are under pressure. The teacher’s pet narrative sees the Chelsea midfielder portrayed as little more than an honest scuffler, relying on his pressing and energy to earn a starting spot at the expense of more exciting creators.

During the early days at Chelsea there were claims that Mount owed his place in the side to some mysterious connection with Frank Lampard. It sort of made sense. Consider the evidence: they both know how to score goals from midfield, which made it entirely reasonable to view Mount as some kind of Lampardian heir, Frank Lampard Jr Jr in disguise, and assume that he was forced to spend hours in the analysis room at Cobham watching every last one of the Chelsea legend’s goals.

Related: Mason Mount’s star turn and Chilwell give Chelsea advantage over Porto

Related: Porto 0-2 Chelsea: Mount and Chilwell put Blues in control – as it happened

Continue reading...

Kylian Mbappé double gives PSG thrilling win at Bayern Munich

Kylian Mbappé produced a performance of stunning high-end incision to drive Paris Saint-Germain to a 3-2 Champions League quarter-final first‑leg victory in Munich.

Hansi Flick’s Bayern produced the familiar high-pressing red waves, racking up 31 shots at goal over a thrilling, slightly wild 90 minutes. But they were picked off repeatedly by Mbappé’s movement and some precision passing from Neymar.

Related: Mason Mount’s star turn and Chilwell give Chelsea advantage over Porto

Continue reading...

Bayern Munich 2-3 PSG: Champions League quarter-final – as it happened

Kylian Mbappe scored twice as PSG took a slight advantage back to Paris after an astonishing match between last year’s finalists

Related: Mbappé urges PSG teammates to repeat display against Bayern Munich

Barney Ronay has filed his report, so I’ll leave you with that. Thanks for your company - goodnight!

Related: Kylian Mbappé double gives PSG thrilling win at Bayern Munich

I can’t stop thinking about the pace and intensity of that game. It’s so easy to get carried away in the moment but I’m honestly struggling to recall anything comparable, certainly not between two of Europe’s best teams. It was as if both teams had been told a bomb would go off if the match ever dropped below 50 miles an hour.

Bayern dominated all the statistics except the big one. PSG spent most of the game in their own third, but they were devastating on the counter-attack. When I say ‘they’, I really mean Kylian Mbappe: he scored twice, to go with a majestic hat-trick at Barcelona in the previous round, and gave Bayern’s defence the heebie-jeebies throughout.

In many ways Bayern played astonishingly well, particularly in the 32 minutes it took them to come from 2-0 down to equalise, and they’ll still fancy their chances in Paris next week. They won’t fancy another night of chasing Mbappe, mind.

Next Tuesday, same time, don’t be late. That was a quite stunning game of football, played on fast-forward throughout. I don’t know about you but I need a lie down, and I’m neutral.

90 min Rafinha replaces Neymar. There will be two added minutes.

89 min Choupo-Moting is booked for dissent after aggressively appealing for a penalty. A low cross from Muller definitely hit the hand of Herrera, but he slipped and the referee let him off because of that. Moments later, somebody flicks a header over the bar. I DON’T KNOW, OKAY.

88 min Alaba has a shot blocked by Herrera. The rebound goes to Coman, who forces Danilo to concede a corner. That leads to yet another blocked shot from a Bayern player.

87 min Coman’s cross is dummied neatly by Choupo-Moting and reaches Muller near the penalty spot. His shot on the turn hits his standing foot and spins just wide of goal. Navas had it covered and may even have got a touch, though a goalkick was given.

86 min: Just wide from Alaba! Sane’s short cross found Choupo-Moting with his back to goal, eight yards out and surrounded by PSG defenders. He laid it back to Alaba, whose low shot from the edge of the area went this far wide.

85 min A poor clearance goes to Draxler, 25 yards from goal. He pushes the ball forward and smacks a shot miles over the bar.

85 min According to the Uefa site, Bayern have had 25 attempts (including blocked shots) to PSG’s five. And Kylian Mbappe couldn’t care less about such stats.

83 min For the first time all night, Bayern look slightly subdued in attack. If it stays like this, they’ll need to win 2-0 in Paris to go through (or 3-1, 4-3, 5-4, etc).

81 min A relatively quiet couple of minutes, in which the pace of the game dropped to merely breakneck.

78 min “Hi Rob,” says David Hindle. “Is it perhaps apt to point out that the ridiculously young, already World Cup-winning Mbappe is what a €150M forward actually looks like?”

77 min Navas makes another big save from Choupo-Moting, though he was miles offside and the flag went up afterwards.

75 min I don’t know whether this is one of the all-time great Champions League games, because some of the defending has been pretty ropey, but I can’t remember seeing a game - certainly not between two teams of this stature - with such relentless pace and intensity.

73 min Choupo-Moting breaks innto space down the right but picks up the wrong option. Then Bayern appeal unsuccessfully for a penalty when Danilo goes through Davies. We haven’t seen a replay yet beCAUSE THERE’S NO BLOODY TIME.

71 min Angel Di Maria is going to be replaced by Moise Kean. He is feeling his hamstring, though it looks more like a strain than a tear so he might be okay for the second leg.

70 min Choupo-Moting shoots straight at Navas, Kimmich is booked for dissent. I cannot keep up with this.

What a devastating counter-attack from PSG. They covered 50 yards in just two passes, first from Draxler and then from Di Maria towards Mbappe on the left. He was one-on-one with Boateng, who looked terrified as he backpedalled into the area. Mbappe shapes to shoot across goal before dragging a shot that goes through Boateng’s legs and beats the wrongfooted Neuer at the near post. That is a brilliant goal!

Another twist in this sensational match!

66 min There’s a second leg next Tuesday as well.

64 min Davies makes a vital interception to stop Mbappe’s pass putting Di Maria through on goal.

63 min An overhead kick from Muller goes well wide. The intensity of Bayern’s response to going 2-0 down has been awesome, and PSG simply cannot get out.

62 min Draxler is booked for flattening Pavard.

It was made by Kimmich, who curled in yet another wicked free-kick from the right. Muller found some space at the edge of the six-yard box - goodness knows how - and flicked a superb header across Navas.

Bayern are level!

60 min This is frickin sensational stuff.

58 min Kimmich plays a superb return pass to release Sane on the right side of the area. He decides not to shoot and instead slides a low cross that is desperately cleared. The ball eventually comes to Kimmich, 25 yards out, and he floats a chip that is easily saved by Navas. He was so confident, in fact, that he controlled the ball on his chest and then picked it up. PSG break and Neuer denies Mbappe in a one-on-one! The flag went up afterwards, but Neuer didn’t know that at the time.

56 min Sane smashes over from the right side of the area. Bayern are having a shot on goal every minute at the moment.

56 min The next goal in this tie is of monstrous importance. This has been a helluva game.

55 min PSG are under so much pressure. Coman cuts inside from the left and hits a long-range shot that is comfortably saved by Navas. Just before that, Danilo produced a superb defensive header under extreme pressure from Choupo-Moting.

53 min The resulting corner is only half cleared, and when the ball is dumped back into the area Pavard meets it with a low volley. Navas makes another decent save to his left.

53 min: Good save from Navas! Bayern work the ball superbly in a tight area to set up Alaba in the D. He sweeps a shot that is pushed behind by Navas, falling to his left. It was nowhere near the corner from Alaba.

52 min: Big save from Neuer! Mbappe nicked the ball off Sane just outside the area and went straight for goal. He was tackled but the loose ball was stolen by Neymar, who danced clear and lifted a close-range shot that was blocked by Neuer. The ball ran to Di Maria, whose low shot was kicked off the line by Davies!

50 min A Bayern corner is cleared to the edge of the area, where Coman mistimes an attempted volley. It’s been all Bayern at the start of the second half.

48 min Coman’s angled cross from the left is this close to the head of Kimmich, who seemed to hang in the air for an age. I’m not entirely sure how PSG cleared it, but they did.

46 min Peep peep! Bayern begin the second half.

PSG have made a half-time substitution: the young Dutch left-back Mitchel Bakker is on for Abdou Diallo. That’s already the fourth substitution of the game.

“Hi there Rob,” says Francis Lee. “What law of physical chemistry explains how, while the snow is visibly slowing down the ball, the pace of play seem to have reached some new level of hyperacceleration?”

It’s the immutable law of the early goal.

That was 45 minutes of sheer, delightful football. Kylian Mbappe smashed PSG into an early lead, Marquinhos coolly made it 2-0 before going off injured, and then the former PSG player Eric Choupo-Moting got Bayern back into it with an emphatic header.

Bayern dominated possession and created most of the chances, but when PSG managed to break the press they were so menacing. Goodness knows what the final score will be, but I promise you one thing: this won’t finish 0-0.

45 min Two minutes of added time, and Bayern are on the attack. Kimmich’s outswinging corner is headed towards goal by the backpedalling Muller, and Navas dances across his line to make a comfortable save.

44 min The corner leads to a brief game of head tennis until Kimpembe blooters the ball to safety.

44 min Another marvellous free-kick from Kimmich on the right is put behind by Danilo, an excellent piece of defending.

43 min In normal circumstances, with crowds at both games, Bayern would be in all sorts of bother here. But we know that home advantage is minimal at the moment, so they are still right in this tie. They have played brillantly for most of the first half.

42 min Another Bayern substitution: Jerome Boateng replaces Niklas Sule. He doesn’t look injured...

38 min Neuer comes out of his area and plays a very dodgy pass that just evades the wrongfooted Di Maria. Had the ball gone to Di Maria he’d have had a relatively easy finish from 40 yards, with Neuer miles out of his goal.

The right-back Pavard flipped a nice cross into the middle, where the unmarked Choupo-Moting thumped a downward header into the corner. That was another very accomplished finish; Navas had no chance.

Bayern are back in it!

35 min Hernandez is booked for blocking Dagba off the ball.

34 min Replays suggest Hernandez didn’t get the ball when he tackled Neymar a couple of minutes ago. That could have been a penalty, albeit a soft one.

33 min A Bayern substitution: Alphonso Davies is replacing Leon Goretzka. That must be an injury, surely. Davies has gone to left-back, with Hernandez moving to the centre of defence and Alaba into midfield.

32 min Neymar swaggers into the area and is about to shoot when Hernandez makes a vital tackle. This is glorious entertainment!

31 min Danilo has moved to centre-back, with Herrera replacing him in midfield.

30 min That was such an accomplished finish from Marquinhos - but it’s his last contribution tonight. He is leaving the field through injury, with Ander Herrera coming on to replace him. That’s such a big blow for PSG.

A PSG corner was half cleared to Neymar, 40 yards from goal. He curled the ball over the outrushing Bayern defence towards Marquinhos, who controlled the ball immaculately and guided it confidently past Neuer. He timed his run beautifully, and replays confirmed he was well onside.

Make that 2-0 down!

27 min Kimmich’s wicked, deep corner is sliced wide at the far post by the stretching Choupo-Moting. That’s another decent opportunity for Bayern, who are playing sensationally. And are 1-0 down.

26 min Muller’s deep cross is missed by the leaping Dagba and reaches Coman, but his first touch is too heavy and that allows Dagba to clear. With a surer first touch he would have had a shot on goal.

24 min PSG are really struggling to get out at the moment. When they do, they look dangerous, but Bayern are pressing them relentlessly.

23 min “Every time I see a player laid down behind the wall in the draught-excluder style,” begins Luke Jones, “it makes me look forward to the first time a kicker smashes a hard, low shot directly at the prone defender.”

I’m sensing rancour.

21 min “Hi Rob,” says Peter Oh. “Hi Rob, I’m no weatherman but let me give this a shot: In Munich at the moment, we have a light dusting of snow followed by a burst of Mbappe. Storm clouds gathering on Flick’s brow but there is a decent chance of Sane breaking through within the next hour.”

20 min Sane controls a crossfield pass on the right of the area and lays the ball back to Pavard, whose fierce drive is pushed round the near post by Navas. This has been a savage response to going behind from Bayern.

19 min: Big save from Navas! Kimmich’s superb free-kick from the right was met by Goretzka, who powered a downward header towards goal from six yards. But it was too close to Navas, who was able to kick the ball away as he fell.

17 min “Neuer will be hurt by conceding a shot that was pretty much straight at him,” says Matt Dony. “But also, Mbappe’s shot hit him in the bare flesh of the inside of his thigh in the what looks like arctic conditions. He’ll be feeling that until half time! Who’d be a goalkeeper?”

At least they’re not using a Mitre Mouldmaster.

Related: The Joy of Six: great footballs

16 min A replay shows that Mbappe was approximately 0.00002cm offside in the build up to that disallowed goal. Crikey.

15 min Coman steals the ball in a dangerous area and wins a corner. Kimmich’s inswinger is headed away by Marquinhos.

15 min This is terrific stuff. Bayern have responded ferociously to going behind, and PSG look extremely menacing on the break.

13 min Bayern appeal unsuccessfully for a penalty when the ball ricochets onto the hand of Danilo in the area. That would have been given in England in October.

NO GOAL! But that was another ominous break from PSG.

12 min: Draxler has a goal disallowed for offside! It was an emphatic finish, but the flag went up against Mbappe in the build up. This is very tight and will be checked by VAR.

10 min: Chance for Muller! Goretzka’s shot from the edge of the area is blocked, but he keeps the move alive and heads the rebound in behind a packed PSG defence. Muller gets to the ball first but pokes a tame volley straight at Navas from eight yards. Everyone assumed he was offside but I’m pretty sure the flag didn’t go up. I suspect Muller thought he was offside as well.

9 min “Is it me or is there an increase in goals scored on the ‘near side’?” writes Gary Naylor. (He also sent this during Wolves v West Ham on Monday, but I missed it then.) “Goalkeepers seem to be set for the shot across the goal, probably because coaches have studied stats that show most shots go there. But if forwards sense a yard available via the shortest route to goal, they’ll take it and wither the stats then?”

8 min Kimmich’s free-kick hits the wall and Alaba slashes the rebound well wide from 20 yards.

6 min Gueye is penalised for handball on the edge of the D. That looked a bit harsh to me, but whatever. Kimmich is over the ball...

4 min Neuer will be unhappy with that. Mbappe’s shot was well struck but straight at him. He tried to save it as he fell to the right, but it went between his legs and into the net.

Kylian Mbappe has blasted PSG into the lead. It was made by Neymar, who ran onto a good return ball from Di Maria and slid Mbappe through on goal in the inside-right channel. He smashed a low shot from 10 yards that went straight through Neuer and into the net.

It’s there!

2 min Hernandez forces an early save from Navas, who pushes a shot into the side netting. The resulting corner is headed on cleverly by Choupo-Moting at the near post, and the ball bounces off the top of the bar.

1 min PSG have started with Draxler on the left and Neymar as the No10, rather than the other way round. Bayern’s shape is as expected.

1 min Peeeeep peeeeep! PSG, in their snazzy away kit, kick off from left to right. Bayern are in red.

The players of both sides embrace in the tunnel. It’s nice and warm in there, not so much outside: it’s still snowing.

Alternative entertainment

Related: Porto v Chelsea: Champions League quarter-final – live!

With Robert Lewandowski and Serge Gnabry unavailable, Eric Choupo-Moting – who came on for PSG in last year’s final – starts up front for Bayern. It’s the same side that beat Leipzig in the Bundesliga at the weekend. And yes, they have named only seven of the 470 allotted substitutes.

PSG have made three changes to the team that lost to Lille on Saturday: Colin Dagba, Danilo and Julian Draxler replace Thilo Kehrer, the suspended Leandro Paredes and Moise Kean.

Interesting... very interesting

Not really @ChampionsLeague quarterfinal weather, but we'll take it ️ #MiaSanMia #FCBPSG #packmas

Pre-match reading

Related: Solving the Neymar question is crucial to PSG's Champions League fortunes | Jonathan Wilson

Related: Lille's win over PSG shows that fame only takes you so far in Ligue 1

Hello. Rematches are one of the best things in sport, a unique pot pourri of the past, present and future. They are mainly associated with individual sports – Gatti v Ward, McEnroe v Borg, Fischer v Spassky, Creed v Balboa – but can be just as mouth-watering when two teams are involved. We’re not talking about replays but rematches, where the finalists from the previous season meet again. One team has the chance to double down on their superiority; the other wants to enjoy bit of the old rewenge, while also eliminating one of the biggest obstacles to them winning the bloody thing this time round.

PSG left Lisbon with plenty of regrets after their 1-0 defeat to Bayern in last year’s Champions League final. It was a story of missed opportunities, unseized initiatives and unpunished high lines. Now they have another chance against a Bayern side who, though still the best team in Europe, are without the injured Robert Lewandowski for both legs of this quarter-final.

Continue reading...

Porto 0-2 Chelsea: Mount and Chilwell put Blues in control – as it happened

Mason Mount and Ben Chilwell goals gave Chelsea an accomplished 2-0 Champions League quarter-final first leg win against Porto in Seville

Related: Thomas Tuchel delighted at Chelsea’s response to West Brom setback

Related: Mason Mount forces ‘honest scuffler’ critics to eat their words | Jacob Steinberg


And that will be all from me. I’m delighted with that - I’ve typed out what happened on the pitch in Seville, I’ve clicked “Save and launch” on each occasion, and obviously, the minute-by-minute updates have appeared on the website.

It looks very much like we will see Real Madrid against Chelsea in the last four of the Champions League, what with Real beating Liverpool 3-1 in their first leg last night. Thanks for reading tonight, well played Chelsea, and see you next time.

Tuchel talks: “Yeah, the result is excellent, of course. It was a tough match against a strong Porto side, [who are] very hard to play, very good individual skills, a proud club, a proud team, an emotional team ... there were many moments where we suffered, but we accepted it ... in some moments it was a good game, in some moments we suffered and we lacked precision ... but the spirit was good and the result was an excellent result.

“I was pretty sure about that [that they would have a reaction after loss to West Brom] ... So that was not a big concern. We had a big loss, of course, but it was our responsibility and we accepted it, me included, for all of us. We were ready to respond ... there will always be setbacks in sports and in football and it is the biggest challenge to bounce back. We had a lot of wins together and a lot of excellent results. Now we had a loss together and now we have a reaction after a loss together ... it brings us closer together, it increases the trust.

Sid Lowe was our man on the scene in Seville. And here’s his match report:

Related: Mason Mount’s star turn and Chilwell give Chelsea advantage over Porto

Chelsea visit sunny Selhurst Park to meet Crystal Palace in the Premier League at 5.30pm on Saturday, then will head back to Seville for the second leg of this tie. Four days after that, it’s an FA Cup semi-final against the titans of Manchester City on the Saturday, closely followed by another league game against Brighton the following Tuesday. It’s all go, it really is.

The scorer of the first goal, Mason Mount, speaks to BT Sport: “We knew it was going to be a tough game ... we knew how hard it is to play against them, we didn’t have many chances, but we kept going. We obviously got the goal first-half, and the second late on secured a good win, but that’s only half the tie ... It’s about time it [a Champions League goal] come [for me] ... it’s a good time for it to come.

“It was a good pass by “Jorgy” and I just had a bit of space, so I just hit it after my first touch, and yeah, it went in, so obviously I was very happy with that. It took us in at half-time 1-0 up and in a good position. I’m always working on my finishing ... I don’t think you can work on it enough ... so yeah very happy to score one tonight, but most importantly we got the win. Chilwell showed great composure, to be fair ... very good finish from him, he’ll be buzzing with that.

A fine night’s work for Thomas Tuchel and Chelsea following that weekend drubbing by Big Sam and West Brom. Two away goals are their reward for a coherent and impressive display all round. Porto had their moments, they played impressively in the first half, when they had no fewer than eight efforts on goal. But Chelsea emerged looking more confident and dynamic after the interval. The introduction of Giroud made a difference and his fellow substitute Pulisic was unfortunate to see a powerful strike cannon back off the crossbar. Azpilicueta looked fortunate to get away with a push in the back of Marega in the second half, which was not checked by the VAR, but Chelsea were mostly comfortable.

90 min + 2: Christensen fouls Díaz, and Porto have one last chance to get something. It’s whipped in well but Mbemba cannot reach it as he tries to head goalwards.

90 min: Ciaran Murphy emails: “First thing I thought when Chilly went round the keeper was 2012 and Torres famous goal against Barcelona, forever known as goalgasm due to Gary Neville’s excitable reaction.”

Kovacic goes off.

85 min: Chilwell sprints down the left - there is a defensive blunder by Porto’s Corona, who tries to control a long pass from Kovacic, but it gets away from him, and in a flash the Chelsea wing-back is bearing down on Marchesín, one-on-one. He coolly clips the ball beyond the goalkeeper, chases on to it, and passes it into the empty net. Porto were very good at times in the first half, but Chelsea have turned the screw in the second half, and they are going to win this ‘away’ leg in convincing fashion.

Huge! The wing-back doubles Chelsea’s lead with a brilliant run and cool finish.

84 min: Chelsea’s Pulisic slams a shot against the crossbar! Wonderful work by Giroud and Kovacic in the build-up. Giroud links up play exquisitely, playing a return pass for Kovacic, who has space to run into, and time to pick a pass in behind for Pulisic, who is unlucky to see his shot cannon back off the bar.

83 min: Three changes for Porto: Francisco Conceição on for Manafá, Martínez for Marega and Vieira for Otávio.

80 min: Pulisic sends a perceptive pass looking for Azpilicueta on a marauding run from defence, on the right. The captain is stretching for it, tries to cross it first-time, and overhits it. Tuchel will be happy to see his side on the front foot, though. Having just come off, Mount slurps a mysterious pink liquid from a plastic bottle, which I am assuming is not a strawberry milkshake awarded as a treat for his goal.

78 min: Kanté and Silva are coming on for Chelsea as Tuchel seeks to steady things and maintain this 1-0 scoreline. Grujic bodychecks Pulisic in midfield and goes straight in Slavko Vincic’s book. James and Mount off, Kanté and Silva on, no changes for Porto yet but they are now imminent.

76 min: Into the final 15 minutes. The commentators point out that Giroud has been on for 11 minutes but not touched the ball. Still, if Chelsea keep the scoreline the same for a 1-0 win, it hardly matters.

74 min: PSG have gone 3-2 up, but I’d like to stress again that we are watching the RIGHT match. What a goal that was by Mount, whenever it was, it seems a long time ago now.

70 min: Sanusi has gone down after a challenge from Azpilicueta, which looked a bit late and naughty on replay. There is no further action aside from a free-kick to Porto, which is fired into the box, and James does well to clear with his head. Now Marega is tackled in the penalty area by the Chelsea captain - it’s a push in the back - but again the referee is not interested! Azpilicueta is sailing extremely close to the wind here, and why didn’t the VAR check that? Sérgio Conceição will want answers when he sees the replay.

69 min: The Porto forward Marega continues to make a nuisance of himself, trying to run to a ball looped over the top on the left. Rüdiger, however, is alert to the danger and hoicks it clear. Porto come again, from the resulting throw-in, and Marega turns well and hits a low shot which Mendy saves comfortably enough.

67 min: Mount’s first-half goal via BT Sport Twitter:

Mason Mount with a brilliant maiden #UCL goal

The pass, the swivel, the finish!

Superb stuff from Chelsea!

65 min: It’s Bayern 2-2 PSG now. We are definitely watching the right game, though.

62 min: Giroud and Pulisic are coming on for Chelsea. Mbemba is booked for a foul on Chilwell in the meantime and Chelsea have a free-kick that they can send into the penalty area. James whips the cross in with pace, Azpilicueta is there to meet it at the near post, but he butchers the header and it flies well wide. That should have been 2-0. Werner comes off for Christian Pulisic, with Olivier “Underrated” Giroud on for Havertz.

59 min: Whoah! Rüdiger belts a shot from 30 yards which Marchesín saves. But the goalie spills the rasping effort in front of him, and Werner does very well to pounce on the loose ball and pass it across the gaping goal. Havertz is there, being put under pressure by a marker, but he gets a shot away towards the open goal ... and it rolls just wide! After all that, it seems Werner was offside anyway.

56 min: Porto are pressing. They win a corner, but Pepe is penalised for a foul on Mendy after comprehensively winning the header, which Mendy was trying to punch. Seconds later, Díaz buys a yard of space on the edge of the box and cracks a lovely curling shot fractionally wide of the post with Mendy beaten! “Mendy would have had it covered,” says Robbie Savage after a replay, but he’s surely mistaken.

55 min: “I’ve noticed on corners Azpilicueta has been tasked with marking Pepe, which feels like a slight mismatch,” writes Alex. “It’s a bit like asking your granny to carry the heavy bag of groceries and your 5-year-old to park the car. Anyways, in Tuchel we trust!”

52 min: Now Díaz wants a penalty after some strong defending by the Chelsea captain Azpilicueta. Díaz goes down in a heap after they go shoulder-to-shoulder, but the ref isn’t convinced, and it’s no penalty.

50 min: Marega bursts down the right, catching Rüdiger out of position. He muscles past the defender and is then faced with a tight angle, with Mendy rushing out of his goal. Marega tries to slide the ball low beyond the Chelsea goalie and into the now empty net, but Mendy does well again and makes the save. Moments before that, Havertz pulled off a crafty handball from a high ball, and Mbemba wanted a booking, but the ref wasn’t interested.

48 min: Rüdiger drills a superb diagonal pass out to James who is hugging the touchline on the right. James controls it instantly and sprints infield, looking to drive into the box, but is penalised for a foul on his marker. Tuchel shakes his head on the sidelines, presumably at the referee’s decision, rather than perceived incompetence by one or more of his players.

47 min: A fine Chelsea counter sees the getting plenty of bodies into the Porto box. Mount clips a good cross from the right. Werner climbs to meet it at the far post, and sends it over the bar. Was the cross slightly too high or did he mistime his jump? Jury is out.

We’re under way again. No changes for either side.

Richard Hirst emails: “Porto 33% possession and eight shots, Chelsea 67% possession and one shot! Lies, damned lies and statistics.”

Indeed, Richard. Especially as reckons it’s in fact 43% possession for Porto to 57% per cent for Chelsea. Good stats either way.

Mason Mount’s first Champions League goal, which was a moment of magic from the England international on 32 minutes, separates the sides. Porto have been very good, and will be frustrated to be behind due to that one flash of inspiration from Mount and Jorginho, whose pass created the chance. Chelsea are ahead, sure, but anyone who was labouring under the misapprehension that Porto was an ‘easy’ draw for Tuchel’s side will be reconsidering.

45 min: Another corner for Porto. Grujic heads it down, Mendy saves. Half-time.

40 min: Into the last five minutes of the half, with Porto pressing forward in attack. Otávio goes down under a clumsy challenge from Havertz. A set-piece for Porto in a useful advanced position. They pump it into the box, the ball drops to Corona who hits a low, powerful volley from the edge of the area, which is goalbound, but Azpilicueta blocks for a corner by sticking out his left boot. From the resulting corner, a thunderous header by Pepe is flying into the net - but is beaten out by Mendy! From the next corner, it’s a comfortable gather for Mendy from another header, and the danger is clear for Chelsea just for the moment.

32 min: That’s a very, very good goal by Mount and rather unexpected given the shape of the game so far. Jorginho gets on the ball ‘in the hole’, moves forward and plays an angled right-footed pass to Mount, who takes it quite beautifully, using one touch to control the ball with his left foot, swivelling in one smooth movement and leaving his marker in his wake, before looking up with a clear sight of goal, albeit from an angle. He hits a low shot which arrows into the far bottom corner, swerving away from the goalkeeper Marchesín. Their first shot on target, and first goal for Chelsea. With the impressive way Porto were defending, that seemed to arrive almost from nowhere.

There it is!

30 min: Chelsea have a little bit of front-foot possession, but Porto are defending incredibly solidly and there is no way through. As the ball is moved around the pitch by Chelsea, the Porto backline (which has become a back six for now) moves in perfect unison, adjusting their position accordingly to cut off the angles.

27 min: Reece James tries to catch Porto out with a clever left-footed pass from out on halfway, looking to curl it around the corner into the right channel for Werner. But Werner, as it turns out, is just offside. But that, perhaps concerningly for Chelsea, is the closest they’ve come to opening up this defence, aside from that one early cross from Havertz.

24 min: Porto nearly score straight from a corner! First up they fashion a good opening which leads to the set-piece. Otávio swings it in, and seems to deliberately try and catch out Mendy with a curler aimed under the crossbar. To his credit, the Chelsea goalie is alive to the danger, and pushes the ball away. It’s nodded back into the danger area and Sanusi volleys over! Too close for comfort, for Chelsea.

23 min: Lee Madden emails: “This Chelsea front three lacks an out and out striker. Mount is a great link up player and Werner is very quick but hardly a natural finisher from what we’ve seen this season. That leaves Havertz who is talented but not delivered for Chelsea yet.... surely Giroud would’ve been the right person to start with? He’s delivered in the Champions League this season, links play well and provides a more direct alternative to Havertz.”

20 min: Porto, in defence, have a flat back five, which becomes a back three when they push up the pitch. They look exceptionally well drilled, almost like they are channelling the spirit of Mourinho’s old Porto side that won the Big Cup back in 03/04. That’s not to say that they are posing no threat in attack, either. They have been the better side so far and Tuchel will be concerned with this.

16 min: Chelsea grasp a chance to break out from defence. Mount crosses deep for the onrushing James, on the right, but the Porto gloveman Marchesín does well to come off his line and catch the cross before it can reach the Chelsea wing-back.

14 min: Some excellent crisp passing by Porto around the Chelsea penalty area ends with a chance for Sanusi to cross from the left. He gets it all wrong, and scuffs it out harmlessly for a goal kick, but there was some seriously slick passing in that move by tonight’s ‘home’ side. They weaved their way through the Chelsea back line. There is a close-up shot of Christensen, one of the three Chelsea centre-backs, looking a bit stressed by all the defending they are having to do.

10 min: Corona finds a yard of space on the Porto left now, and chips a reasonable cross into the danger zone. Mendy, however, is able to claim it comfortably. But Porto then come again on the right - the ball is cut back for Díaz, whose shot is blocked. Then a brilliant volley by Uribe flashes just over the crossbar and kisses the top of the net on its way over! That would have been a spectacular goal, and it was only inches away. Warning signs for Chelsea ...

8 min: Porto win a free-kick in a promising area on the right wing. But instead of sticking it into the mixer, they somewhat bizarrely choosed to play the dead ball back towards the halfway line, and Chelsea are grateful to be able to push out from their own penalty area. Is that an early indication of the kind of ambition Porto are going to show for getting a result tonight?

5 min: The early tempo is high, Chelsea are enjoying more of the ball, and zipping it around pretty well. Mount makes progress on the right now, from a pass by Azpilicueta. He is crowded out but he wins a corner. PSG have taken the lead against Bayern.

2 min: Porto immediately looking to press Chelsea when their opponents have possession. The Chelsea goalkeeper Mendy is half a second away from being charged down by Marega, but clears in time. Havertz then makes a dart on the left, and crosses along the six-yard box, but no one is there to meet his delivery.

Here we go. Porto playing in blue and white, Chelsea playing in red (pink?) with blue trim.

The teams are out on the pitch. I’m genuinely intrigued to see what we get tonight. It could be a stultifying, risk-free encounter in which both teams look to next week’s second leg at the same venue. Or will they come out swinging, aiming to achieve a decisive advantage in the ‘first half’ of the tie? We’ll see. Time for the anthem. The Chaaaaaammmmppppions!

On BT Sport, Gary Lineker is talking about Timo Werner’s struggles since he joined Chelsea: “I never minded missing chances, I only worried when I wasn’t getting chances, then you question your movement ... you miss some, you score some, and it’s important not to let the ones that you miss affect you ... that’s your mental strength, and ultimately ... if you haven’t got that, you’re going to struggle.”

Kick-off is literally less than 20 minutes away.

Tuchel talks to BT Sport: “It’s not a blow at all that Kanté will not start, we have him on the bench, and I’m delighted about that ... tonight is about running, about attacking the box, it’s about being fluid in our attacks, that’s the target for our front three guys ... It’s difficult to create chances against Porto ... and it’s a big task. It’s a team effort to attack, and a team effort to defend ... we went for this lineup with full confidence and full trust.”

Good to see the Chelsea faithful getting firmly behind Tuchel over on Twitter.

Regardless of whatever Thomas Tuchel is doing, we need to mention Frank secured us against the odds Champions league football last season. Without Frank this campaign would never have been possible. Thank you Frank Lampard. FOREVER LEGEND! LET'S WIN IT FOR HIM

Harrison Boase kicks off the evening’s emailing in fine style:

“Interesting fact about the weekend result with West Brom. The last time Chelsea conceded five goals at home was in the 2011/12 season. The last time West Brom scored five away from home was the 2011/12 season. Manchester City won the league that year. I think it was Gary Neville who famously said “it’s written in the stars” as Drogba stepped up to the spot to secure our first CL title, maybe he should check his crystal ball?”

Porto team: Marchesín, Manafá, Mbemba, Pepe, Sanusi, Corona, Grujic, Uribe, Otávio, Marega, Díaz. Subs: Diogo Leite, N’Diaye, Cláudio Ramos, Baró, João Mário, Felipe Anderson, Martínez, Evanilson, Nanu, Sarr, Vieira, Francisco Conceição.


Chelsea team news is in! #PORCHE

Tonight’s BT Sport studio dream team: Lineker, Ferdinand, Cole and Hoddle.

“Last night was good. We had goals. That’s all you can ask for these days ... you want goals, excitement,” observes Ferdinand, looking ahead to tonight.

Does anyone here remember when Chelsea won the Champions League back in 2012?

I was at the second leg against Napoli at Stamford Bridge, as Robert Di Matteo’s brave boys fought back from a 3-1 first-leg defeat to make it through. The rest is history.

Related: My favourite game: Chelsea v Napoli 2012 | Luke McLaughlin

The winner of this quarter-final will meet Liverpool or Real Madrid in the last four. Liverpool lost 3-1 in Madrid last night, and can hardly be said to be in form, so it looks like a meeting with Zinedene Zidane’s men is on the cards.

Here is Andy Hunter on last night’s match:

Related: Liverpool’s unforced errors cannot detract from the one Klopp made | Andy Hunter

Will the fact that next week’s second leg is also here in Seville affect tonight, tactics-wise? You’d rather think so. Tuchel and Chelsea will not benefit from home advantage next week, so surely it wouldn’t make much sense to sit back and aim for a draw this evening.

What do you reckon, Chelsea fans? Feel free to drop me a line on email or tweet @LukeMcLaughlin with your thoughts.

Chelsea have already recorded a thumping win at tonight’s venue - the Ramón Sánchez Pizjuán Stadium - in this season’s Champions League. Olivier Giroud, everyone’s favourite underrated striker (to the point that he’s actually not underrated), knocked in a four goals back in December when they hammered Sevilla:

Related: Olivier Giroud's fantastic four flattens Sevilla as Chelsea claim top spot

I’ll bring you tonight’s teams as soon as they’re released. What we do know is that Porto will be without their captain and top-scorer Sérgio Oliveira as well as forward Mehdi Taremi, who are both suspended.

Chelsea have some good news on the fitness front: N’Golo Kanté is back in the squad after missing the West Brom defeat, although is not widely expected to start. Christian Pulisic is also available after coming off at half-time on Saturday with a hamstring niggle. Last but not least, Tammy Abraham is also fit enough to be included in the squad, but again, is not expected to start.

Porto’s manager, Sérgio Conceição, also had an unseemly incident to deal with recently - although in his case it was a set-to involving himself and the Portimonense manager Paulo Sérgio.

“The pressure or the emotion of a game doesn’t justify my behaviour or Paulo’s,” Conceição said. “It was ugly.”

Related: Porto's Conceição parks 'ugly' episode and turns attention to Chelsea

Tuchel’s in-tray this week included dealing with headlines that revealed a training-ground flare-up between the defender Antonio Rüdiger and goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga, which the coach insisted was ‘serious’, while simultaneously praising the players for dealing with it among themselves and making friends again. Better to see some passion on the training pitch, you would have thought, than a group of players happy to quietly trouser their inflated salaries regardless?

Related: Tuchel praises Rüdiger and Arrizabalaga for making peace after row in training

All good things come to an end: even Thomas Tuchel’s opening unbeaten run at Chelsea. He took over in late January and embarked on a 14-match streak without defeat, conceding two goals along the way, so no one expected a capitulation quite as complete as Saturday’s 5-2 shellacking by relegation battlers West Brom. Big Sam Allardyce decisively terminated any remaining hint of new-manager-bounce for Chelsea’s gegenpressing, orange-spritzer-sipping, former Paris Saint-Germain coach Tuchel, and the truth is the Baggies were on top before Thiago Silva’s first-half dismissal appeared to open the floodgates.

Tuchel and Chelsea have been knocked down, then, but the question is, how quickly will they get up again? Management can look easy when you’re winning - or certainly easier - so apart from anything else, tonight’s Champions League quarter-final first leg against Porto in Seville will be a fascinating test of Tuchel’s ability. The evidence of the past couple of months suggests he knows what he’s doing, but it is also hard to escape the suspicion there are some, perhaps even among Chelsea’s own supporters, who were waiting for this gangling Bavarian uber-nerd (© Barney Ronay) to be taught a thing or two about English football.

Continue reading...

Liverpool’s unforced errors cannot detract from the one Klopp made | Andy Hunter

Jürgen Klopp’s side’s history of comebacks is one of the few things in their favour when Real Madrid return to Anfield

Eradicate the mistakes, pass the ball better and Liverpool will be unrecognisable against Real Madrid next Wednesday with or without the backing of a frenzied Anfield crowd. That, at least, was Jürgen Klopp’s hope during a post‑match press conference at the Estadio Alfredo Di Stéfano that veered towards straw-clutching even before he mentioned Barcelona. Twice. Liverpool must transform themselves at Anfield to give substance to their manager’s flickering belief.

“With all the problems we had tonight,” the Liverpool manager said, “Real Madrid had to score at least one goal with us giving the goal away and the other goals were because of mistakes from us as well. If we don’t make these mistakes and if we play better football, both of which we can do, then it is a new game and we will see how the result will be then.”

Related: Liverpool’s Klopp says referee treated Mané unfairly in defeat by Real Madrid

Related: Real Madrid’s Toni Kroos in total control mode to expose Liverpool’s soft centre | Barney Ronay

Continue reading...