Mourinho salutes Chelsea

Chelsea's Cesar Azpilicueta (left), John Terry, David Luiz (right) and their team-mates celebrate at the final whistle during the UEFA Champions League Quarter Final match at Stamford Bridge

Chelsea's Cesar Azpilicueta (left), John Terry, David Luiz (right) and their team-mates celebrate at the final whistle during the UEFA Champions League Quarter Final match at Stamford Bridge

First published in Sport

JOSE MOURINHO believes Chelsea’s ‘‘special spirit’’ was key in overcoming Paris St Germain and will worry whoever is pitted against them in the Champions League semifinals.

Having suffered a 3-1 defeat in the French capital last week it was a big ask to progress.

However, substitute Andre Schurrle gave Chelsea hope in the first half and fellow replacement Demba Ba netted late on to secure a 2-0 win that saw them progress on away goals, with the tie ending 3-3 on aggregate.

It stretches Mourinho’s unbeaten run in European quarter- finals to nine and, having won the tournament with Porto and Inter Milan, raises possibility of Chelsea repeating their 2012 success.

‘‘We are in the semi-finals and if the quarter-finals had eight fantastic teams, imagine the four that are going to reach the semi-finals,’’ Mourinho said. ‘‘Anything can happen.

A big opponent is waiting for us in the semi-final, but I think it doesn’t matter who. They know that we are a team with a special spirit, even if we are not in the maximum of our potential.

‘‘But, for sure, we are going to enjoy the same way I told the players we had to enjoy this second leg in the quarterfinal.

We have to enjoy to play against the great opponent waiting for us.’’ Chelsea are joined in the semi-finals by Real Madrid after they overcame a scare in Germany to sneak past Borussia Dortmund.

A meeting with the Madrid giants would set up a fascinating clash with the club Mourinho left last summer, but is not one he is particularly hoping for.

Mourinho’s calm demeanour in the post-match press conference was a far cry from the animated character seen on the touchlines.

The Portuguese celebrated Ba’s late winner by bolting down the touchlines in scenes similar to those witnessed when Porto knocked out Manchester United at Old Trafford en route to Champions League success a decade ago.

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