FC Porto v Liverpool: Live matchday blog
Follow all of the action with our live updates, photos, videos, stats and more as Liverpool face FC Porto in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie.
- Mane fires hat-trick in Portugal
- Salah and Firmino also on target
Savour tonight's stunning win with our Opta widgets below...
Reds run riot at the Dragao
Liverpool secure an emphatic 5-0 victory over FC Porto in Portugal in the first leg of the Champions League last-16 tie.
Sadio Mane helped himself to a hat-trick, while Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino were also on target on a night to savour for the Reds.
GOAL! SADIO MANE!
And that is the hat-trick as Mane smacks the ball beyond Sa from 20 yards with a lovely finish!
Mane scoops Robertson's cross over the bar on the stretch. Could have been the hat-trick.
Ings and Gomez are on for Firmino and Alexander-Arnold for the last 10 minutes here.
Liverpool make a change and Joel Matip is on for Henderson, with the Reds going to three at the back.
GOAL! ROBERTO FIRMINO!
Roberto Firmino gets in on the act by scoring Liverpool's fourth with a lovely finish from Milner's pull-back after Mane had played the vice-captain into space in the box.
Bobby celebrates with a double Kung-Fu kick.
Trent's cross from the right almost finds Firmino's dart to the back post, but it's just a touch too high for Bobby.
'Don't forget about Sadio...'
With all the talk of the Firmino and Salah 'double act' after Sunday's win at Southampton, Jürgen Klopp told Liverpoolfc.com on the flight to Porto that no-one should be overlooking Mane's contribution to the Reds' attack - and how true his words are ringing so far tonight.
GOAL! SADIO MANE!
Liverpool have a third with their first attack of the second half as the devastate Porto with a counter-attack.
Firmino's sublime flick sends Salah racing down the left. He returns it to the Brazilian, whose low strike is parried by Sa, but Mane is on hand to slot home the loose ball.
Back under way...
Porto restart the game at the Estadio do Dragao and we're up and running again.
The tale of the first-half tape...
Porto almost find a way back into the game as Soares misses the bottom corner by a matter of inches from the edge of the box.
So far, so good...
Goals from Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah have given Liverpool a 2-0 lead over FC Porto at the halfway stage of this tie at the Estadio do Dragao.
Mo Salah, Mo Salah, runnin' down the wing...
GOAL! MOHAMED SALAH!
And there it is - Mo Salah's customary goal.
He claims number 30 of the season with some, quite frankly, ridiculous skill to juggle the ball over Sa with his head after Milner's shot had come back off the post.
And the Egyptian king then nudges it over the line to double the Reds' lead.
GOAL! SADIO MANE!
Liverpool have the lead and the all-important away goal as Mane finds the back of the net after the ball breaks for him inside the area. His low strike is met by Sa, but the goalkeeper can't prevent it rolling under his body and over the line.
It'd been on the cards as the Reds have controlled the last 10-15 minutes.
Liverpool spring forward at speed, but Robertson's cross intended for the head of Firmino six yards out is intercepted by Reyes.
Liverpool win the ball back from a Porto goalkick and Firmino slides Salah into space inside the box. He elects to try and find Mane rather than shoot, but the hosts get a body in the way and clear.
The ball rolls invitingly for Robertson on the corner of the Porto box; however, his strike is too high to trouble Sa.
Mane's run across the backline is picked out by Henderson's ball forward, but the No.19 can't pick out Salah in the centre.
The game's first chance falls to Porto - and it's a good one as Otavio wriggles free inside the box, but has his shot blocked by Van Dijk and the ball loops over the crossbar.
Early corner for Porto conceded by Alexander-Arnold, but Liverpool snuff out the danger.
In spite of the awful weather, there's some noise being made inside the Dragao here.
Here we go, then...
Liverpool kick the game off at the Estadio do Dragao and we're under way.
Come on you Reds!
The teams are out, the Champions League theme is blasting... it's almost time.
A reminder of the line-ups...
A glimpse inside the Estadio do Dragao...
Klopp explains his line-up
The boss has discussed the thinking behind his chosen XI tonight - and specifically the selection of Jordan Henderson and James Milner in midfield.
"They're not playing because we need to be solid, but in a positive way," he said.
"We need experience as well. We need the right attitude, for sure. They are very important players for us and we need to be ready for this fight, because it will be a fight – it will be a very physical game.
"But that's all normal, it's the Champions League. In this round, the opponents are getting better. No problem with that. We have to show we are ready for it."
LFCTV pundit Gary Gillespie has brushed up on Liverpool's previous meetings with Porto - perhaps he read our blog entry below - and admits he would be satisfied with a repeat over the two legs...
"We are all looking forward to this and it's what we played all of last season for. Their league form is exceptional, they are undefeated at home, so they are a decent side.
"We have played them a couple of times in Europe, with draws away from home and managed to win at Anfield. If we can do that again this time then I think everybody would be more than happy."
Team news – three changes for LFC
Jordan Henderson, Dejan Lovren and James Milner come into the Liverpool XI at Estadio do Dragao, with Emre Can suspended and Joel Matip and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain dropping to the bench.
Liverpool team in full: Karius, Alexander-Arnold, Van Dijk, Lovren, Robertson, Henderson, Milner, Wijnaldum, Mane, Salah, Firmino.
Substitutes: Mignolet, Gomez, Moreno, Lallana, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Ings, Matip.
WEATHER UPDATE NOTIFICATION
It's raining in Porto. A lot.
The stage is set...
Gerrard: Time to deliver
Steven Gerrard knows exactly what it takes in the Champions League, of course. And the man who lifted the trophy as Liverpool captain in 2005 had this to say ahead of kick-off...
"Liverpool fans live for big European nights. The fans around the city are always talking about European nights – they want to go on trips. That comes with pressure for the players. They have to deliver.
"Liverpool are expected to progress, so the players have to deliver over the two legs. I've got confidence they can do it, but it will be tough and you have to respect some of the Porto individuals and them as a team."
Goals, goals, goals
Klopp's men racked up a British-record 23 goals in the group stage - and there's plenty of time to enjoy them all over again in the video below...
There was praise and pride from Porto boss Sergio Conceicao at his pre-match press conference.
"Liverpool have the second-best attack in the Premier League. They are also good in terms of consistency," he commented. "But of course they have weaknesses, like all teams, and we will try to exploit them. We have a strategy, and we will try to stay true to our identity."
Liverpool v Porto: A brief history
The history books give the Reds cause for optimism tonight, as they are unbeaten in four games with the Portuguese giants.
A 0-0 draw in Portugal and a 2-0 win at Anfield eased Gerard Houllier's side to an aggregate success in their 2001 UEFA Cup quarter-final en route to lifting the trophy.
Six years later, with Rafa Benitez now steering the club in Europe, the teams met in the Champions League group stage. 10-man Liverpool were fortunate to claim a draw on their travels but recorded an emphatic 4-1 victory in the return on Merseyside.
Merseyside Police have tweeted the following advice for Liverpool fans out in Porto.
"Porto v Liverpool. Supporters are encouraged to gather at the open square at Avendia dos Aliados. Here you will find numerous bar and restaurants. Public buses(routes 401, 700, 800, 801) and the Metro (purple line Estadio do Dragao) can be accessed from here for travel to the stadium.
"Merseyside Police will be operationally deployed in Porto. If you need any matters bringing to their attention please phone 00441517096010 and ask for an e mail to be sent to 8070 Lee Lomax. The officer will have access to his e mails and return your call. Thanks."
Follow @MerPolLFC for more information.
Here's how our official betting partner sees things going tonight.
Ahead of this evening's game in Portugal, we spoke to Maisfutebol journalist Luis Pedro Ferreira to get the lowdown on the opposition including info on...
- Style of play
For all that and more check out a remarkably detailed Q&A by clicking here.
Out and about
Our men on the ground in Porto have spotted plenty of Liverpool fans soaking up the atmosphere ahead of kick-off despite the wet conditions.
More, more, more
You can also see what the boss had to say in his pre-match press conference with our free LFCTV GO clip below.
'We have to kick out a big team'
Interesting stuff from Jürgen Klopp on the challenge that awaits his team in Portugal this evening.
He told Liverpoolfc.com: "They are very experienced. They’re very aggressive, very physical and it will be a heated atmosphere as well, so there’s a lot we have to deal with. But they haven’t played very often against a team like us, so it’s a same problem they’ll have. They are a football-playing side, they fight like they want to show that they are there and want to go through to the next round. They are a big club, a proud club, as we are. It’s cool to be in the last 16 but we have to kick out a big one to be in the last eight."
A few pre-match figures from club statistician Ged Rea to whet your appetite...
- Mohamed Salah is one goal away from becoming just the 13th player to score 30 in a season for Liverpool.
- The Reds' two previous victories in Portugal came at Benfica in 1978 and 1984 in quarter-finals. On both occasions the Reds went on to win the European Cup.
- Liverpool are unbeaten in their last 10 matches in the Champions League including qualifiers, winning five and drawing five.
- Jürgen Klopp has lost only two of his 21 European games while in charge at Anfield, with the Reds scoring 46 goals in those fixtures.
Liverpool had the chance to become accustomed to their new surroundings last night as they trained at Estadio do Dragao.
Still some waiting around to do until we get the starting XIs, but we do know who could be involved at least.
Ragnar Klavan, Joe Gomez and Jordan Henderson are all in contention to return this evening, while Virgil van Dijk and Danny Ings could make their first Champions League appearances of the season after being added to the Reds' European squad.
However, Emre Can will miss out through suspension, while Nathaniel Clyne is not yet fit enough to play having only recently resumed training.
Here we go
It's time to start our live matchday blog for this evening's Champions League meeting with FC Porto in Portugal.
The Reds face a tough away test in the first leg of their last-16 tie, and we'll keep you across the build-up, team news, match action and reaction as they attempt to make a strong start at Estadio do Dragao.