Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel outlined why he had little doubt his side would shrug off their West Brom humbling and respond with an emphatic performance.
Chelsea put one foot into the semi-final stages of the Champions League after securing a 2-0 victory over FC Porto in the away leg. Porto looked dangerous throughout, but Edouard Mendy produced a number of fine stops to frustrate the Portuguese outfit.
Chances at the other end were in relative short supply. However, when Porto’s defensive line was breached, a pair of Englishmen were on hand to notch their first Champions League goals each.
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Speaking to BT Sport after the match, Tuchel said: “It was a tough match against a strong Porto side.
“There were many moments where we suffered. We accepted it. The circumstances are a bit different in a quarter-final. The spirit was good and it was an excellent result.
“I was pretty sure about that [they’d react well after the WBA defeat]. I saw a response immediately in the dressing room and the next day. That wasn’t a big concern. We were ready to respond. There will always be setbacks in sports. The biggest challenge is to bounce back.
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“We had a lot of excellent results together, then we had a loss together and then a reaction after a loss together. That brings us closer together and increases the trust.
“I’m very happy that he [Mason Mount] scores. A very important goal that opened up the game. It calmed the nerves. Not an easy shot but very precise. Very happy for Mason. He took responsibility.
“[Ben Chilwell’s goal was] excellent. He kept composure and went round the keeper. It was super important to get the second away goal. Chilly forced the mistake and kept his cool in the box. We’re very happy to go away with this result but it’s only half-time.”
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Chelsea goalscorer Mount also spoke to the press, telling BT Sport: “We knew it would be a tough game. We kept going, we got the goal in the first half and the second secured a good win.
“It’s only half the tie, there’s a second leg to go.
“It’s about time it [his first Champions League goal] came. I’ve been waiting patiently. It was a good time for it to come. A good pass by Jorginho, I had space and I hit it.
“I’m always working on it [finishing]. I don’t think you can work on it enough. I think I can improve on it and score more goals.
“He [Ben Chilwell] showed great composure. I thought he’d shoot in front of goal but he took it past the keeper. He’ll be buzzing with that.
“After the West Brom game we put it behind us. We looked briefly at it the next day and moved on. We came into this game with full focus, 100% commitment that we’d win.
“The job’s not done. They’ll fight for the next leg and we’ll have to give it our all. We’ll be ready.”
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