Champions League: Liverpool stroll past Porto to qualify for final four

Liverpool strolled past Porto for the second consecutive year to qualify for the Champions League semi-final.

Sadio Mane opened the scoring in the first half before Mohamed Salah - Sunday’s hero against Chelsea - added a second after the break.

Roberto Firmino and Virgil van Dijk added late strikes to add extra gloss to the scoreline as Liverpool confirmed their place in the final four.

And the result means Jurgen Klopp’s men will face Barcelona for a place in the final for a second year in a row.

Earlier in the night, it was Porto with the first chance of the game inside a minute, with Jesús Manuel Corona cutting inside and striking a curling effort towards the far corner which missed by a matter of inches.

Sadio Mane of Liverpool celebrates with teammate Fabinho of Liverpool after scoring his team's first goal during the UEFA Champions League Quarter Final second leg match

The second leg seemed to follow a similar pattern to the first, with Porto taking plenty of shots, but very few troubling Alisson in the Liverpool goal.

Porto were certainly on top though, applying the pressure and shooting whenever the opportunity presented itself, without creating too many clear cut chances. The lively Moussa Marega, in particular, dragged a couple of mistimed shots wide.

Despite the pressure on the Liverpool back line, the Reds knew that scoring just one away goal would mean Porto needed to score four goals on the night, and Liverpool found that crucial goal on 26 minutes.

Mane had a nervous wait to check if his goal was onside following a VAR check, but once it was given it proved to be the crucial goal in the tie.

AS IT HAPPENED: Porto (1) 1-4 (6) Liverpool

Corona continued to look dangerous down the right hand side for Porto, but his left footed strike failed to trouble Alisson in the Liverpool goal, as the home side racked up 15 first half shots without finding the back of the net.

The second half continued as the first half finished, with plenty of long range efforts on the Liverpool goal.

Héctor Herrera drove one from the left hand side, just outside the penalty area, but it was straight at the away side’s Brazilian goalkeeper as Liverpool continued to defend resiliently while catching the Portuguese side on the break.

But Salah’s goal put the result beyond doubt with a cool finish. He found himself in on goal courtesy of a defence splitting pass from Trent Alexander-Arnold and the Egyptian couldn’t miss.

Porto scored a consolation with just over 20 minutes to go but there was too much work to do.

James Milner of Liverpool battles for possession with Hector Herrera during the UEFA Champions League Quarter Final second leg match between Porto and Liverpool.
Roberto Firmino of Liverpool celebrates after scoring his team's third goal.

As the hosts pushed forward, Brazilian forward Firmino added a third with 12 minutes to go.Liverpool’s man of the season so far, Van Dijk, then found himself unmarked and just a couple of yards out from a corner to make it 4-1 on the night and 6-1 on aggregate.

Klopp will now contemplate the first leg of their semi-final against Barcelona, which will take place at the Camp Nou.

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