Chelsea top Group G with victory over Porto

Chelsea 2-0 Porto Willian sealed victory for Chelsea as the Blues topped Group G, the defeat proving costly for Porto who transfer to the UEFA Europa League.

Watch the best of the action from Stamford Bridge, as the hosts ensured their qualification for the knockout stages as Group G winners.
  • Chelsea win Group G, long-time leaders Porto finish third
  • Iván Marcano's own goal is followed by Willian's second-half strike
  • Porto drop into the UEFA Europa League, a competition they won in 2011
  • The Dragons' miserable record in England now reads: P16 W0 D2 L14
  • The round of 16 draw takes place at 12.00CET on 14 December

Willian's fifth goal in this season's UEFA Champions League sealed Chelsea's achievement as group winners for a third successive year, while Porto missed out on the last 16 despite finishing with ten points.

Level before the start, both teams knew that victory would guarantee first place in Group G and it was always the Londoners who looked the more likely. They led from the 12th minute, when a sublime Eden Hazard pass put Diego Costa in full flight, his strength taking him past the challenge of Iván Marcano. Although Iker Casillas was equal to Costa's effort, the ball flew off Marcano's chest and evaded Maicon's desperate attempt to prevent it slipping over the line.

Yacine Brahimi comes to terms with Porto's elimination
Yacine Brahimi comes to terms with Porto's elimination©AFP/Getty Images

It was a slice of good fortune that made Porto's task much more difficult and enabled Chelsea to exhibit a shade more freedom. The first serious strike on goal had, however, come at the other end, where Yacine Brahimi had shot fiercely and Thibaut Courtois, experiencing the UEFA Champions League pressures for the first time this term, had stuck out a palm to deflect it to safety.

Porto's passing was slick and incisive but they could not translate that into clear-cut opportunities. They would have to commit more men forward in the second half knowing it could leave them short of cover at the back. When Costa wriggled free again, Willian's snap drive was beaten out by Casillas.

That was followed by a Jesús Corona surge off the left flank; his attempt was nothing more than a routine catch for a keeper of Courtois' calibre. In the 52nd minute Costa and Hazard combined again to deadly effect, the Belgium playmaker feeding Willian, who shot hard inside Casillas's left-hand post. Hazard rattled the upright late on as he sought his first goal in 26 games, while Porto gambled again and again in pursuit of a consolation but found Courtois back to his best.

Mourinho: Win good for Chelsea pride
Mourinho: Win good for Chelsea pride

Section winners again
You have to acknowledge Chelsea's remarkable consistency in the UEFA Champions League – this is the tenth time in the last 13 campaigns that they have topped their group, while qualification was also earned in two of the other seasons (2005/06 and 2008/09). Only in 2012/13, as defending champions, did they miss out.

Two own goals
Have Chelsea planted a curse in the Shed End goalmouth? Their opener in the 2-1 matchday four victory over Dynamo Kyiv was also an own goal, from defender Aleksandar Dragovic, from very nearly the same spot that the ball rebounded off Marcano here before trundling over the line.

Link-up play
Costa and Hazard have struggled for form, yet their combinations in paving the way for both Chelsea goals will be a boost to their confidence. It was the latter's intuitive first-time pass that invited Costa to embark on his rampaging run for the first and the pair linked up well again in the second half for Willian's clincher.

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