Chelsea beat Dortmund 2-0, reach Champions League quarter-finals

A controversial retaken penalty kick helped Chelsea turn the tide to overcome Borussia Dortmund 2-0 on the night and 2-1 on aggregate on Tuesday.

The win helped the London side to progress to the 2022/2023 UEFA Champions League quarter-finals.

Raheem Sterling struck before the break for the hosts and Kai Havertz netted from the penalty kick spot on 53 minutes.

This was following a debatable penalty kick award and a retake after he hit the post.

It all helped to sneak Chelsea into the last eight for the third straight season.

In contrast, Benfica eased through with a Gonçalo Ramos brace setting up a 5-1 home romp against Club Brugge to complement a 2-0 away win.

The remaining last-16 second legs take place on Wednesday and next week.

“How can that be? I don’t understand it,” Borussia Dortmund midfielder Emre Can said, about the retaken penalty kick, labelling Dutch referee Danny Makkelie as “arrogant.”

“We’ve played well and I’m proud to play for this team, and we didn’t deserve to lose.”

The Chelsea game kicked off with a 10-minute delay after Borussia Dortmund arrived at Stamford Bridge late because of traffic.

The German fans set off yellow smoke bombs, which drifted over the pitch and possibly put off Sterling with an early Chelsea chance.

Borussia Dortmund forward Julian Brandt then limped off with an apparent hamstring strain after just five minutes, to be replaced by Gio Reyna.

Borussia Dortmund goalkeeper Gregor Kobel was only fit for the bench so Alex Meyer again deputised, denying Joao Felix as the hosts dominated.

The 2012 and 2021 winners, enduring a poor season in England under Graham Potter, almost made the breakthrough when Germany’s Havertz hit the post.

Borussia Dortmund’s Marco Reus also went close with a free-kick.

The 1997 champions had good possession but lacked a finishing touch with Karim Adeyemi, who made the difference in last month’s first leg, out through injury.

Havertz soon had an excellent strike ruled out for an earlier offside also.

The pressure told on 43 minutes when Sterling slammed home, having initially missed his kick in the penalty box.

Chelsea came out firing again in the second half.

But Borussia Dortmund’s Marius Wolf can count himself unlucky to have been adjudged to have handled a cross in the 18-yard box after video review.

Havertz clipped the post but got another go because Borussia Dortmund players —- as well as Chelsea’s Ben Chilwell —- entered the area before he had taken the penalty kick.

He made no mistake second time and although Borussia Dortmund pushed, they could not conjure a leveller to force extra-time.

Sterling later said: “It was a massive performance. We had to dig deep. We took our chances. We felt as a team we could do it.

“I thought about taking (the penalty kick) the second time but I was so confident in Kai to put it in the back of the net.”

In Lisbon, João Mário followed up his first-leg goal with an early strike but it was chalked off on review for an offside.

He also had a shot cleared off line while the modest Belgians, 1978 runners-up, threatened sporadically through captain Hans Vanaken.

It was no surprise when Rafa Silva scored with a superb finish on 38 minutes.

Ramos extended the lead for the Portuguese on the stroke of half-time after beating three defenders.

He netted again on 57 minutes, before João Mário finally got his goal from the penalty kick spot, while David Neres, who also scored in Bruges, made it 5-0.

Bjorn Meijer’s late goal then meant nothing.

Ramos later said: “It looked easy but it wasn’t like that at all, we were on the limit.”

The only negative for twice champions Benfica, who also made the quarter-finals last season, is the absence of skipper Nicolas Otamendi for the last-eight first leg following a booking.(dpa/NAN)

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