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Liverpool completes formality of reaching Champions League quarters

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - MARCH 06: Sadio Mane of Liverpool stretches for the ball while under pressure from Maximiliano of FC Porto during the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 Second Leg match between Liverpool and FC Porto at Anfield on March 6, 2018 in Liverpool, United Kingdom.

Shaun Botterill / Getty Images Sport / Getty

As expected, Liverpool reached the Champions League quarter-finals after a humdrum 0-0 draw with FC Porto at Anfield on Tuesday.

The Reds did much of the work in the first leg, battering the Portuguese side 5-0 at the Estadio do Dragao in mid-February. That result allowed Jurgen Klopp to rest some players in the second meeting – Mohamed Salah, Virgil van Dijk, Trent Alexander-Arnold, and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain were named on the bench ahead of Saturday’s trip to Manchester United – and those on the pitch also appeared to be taking a breather in the dreary showing.

Sadio Mane came closest to breaking the deadlock, hitting the foot of the post around half an hour into the match, and Danny Ings was denied by a top-drawer Iker Casillas save in the closing moments.

With some forgettable performances from players of both sides, the night belonged to Porto’s following. The away fans continued to sing beyond the final whistle, and will hope their team’s elimination from the tournament means it can focus on capturing the Primeira Liga – Porto holds a five-point advantage over second-placed Benfica – and seeing off Sporting CP in the semi-finals of the Taca de Portugal.

Liverpool will discover its final-eight opponent when the draw is conducted on March 16.

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