Graham Potter thinks his Chelsea players were “fantastic” as they beat Borussia Dortmund on aggregate to reach the Champions League quarter-finals.
The Blues were 1-0 behind on aggregate heading into Tuesday night’s Champions League last-16 second leg against Dortmund at Stamford Bridge.
Potter would have been hoping that his players stepped up to the occasion and they did just that. The hosts were much the better side in the second leg and they went in front on the night just before half-time.
Raheem Sterling fired the ball home and Chelsea were later awarded a penalty for handball after the interval. Kai Havertz netted his re-taken spot-kick after a second attempt was ordered for encroachment.
Jude Bellingham missed a big chance to score for Dortmund but
The Blues have now won two games in a row for the first time since October and they will hope to make it three when they face Leicester City in the Premier League this weekend.
Potter was visibly relieved after the final whistle. He admitted that there was a “tense” end to the game but he praised his players for their “fantastic” performance.
“There is a lot of emotion in the end. It was tense in the end but the boys played fantastic. I am delighted for them to get the win and great for everyone here,” Potter told BT Sport.
When asked if he knew anything about the penalty: “Not a massive amount to be honest. I knew they had encroached. It was him or Reece. Sometimes they have to feel it on the pitch. Obviously we have confidence in Kai. I wasn’t watching it but was delighted when I heard the roar.
“Taking penalties is not for me, so I am in awe of anybody [who does].
“There was a fantastic feeling in the dressing room. We have been through a tough period and this competition means a lot to us. We wanted to progress and get into the last eight and it sets us up for the next few weeks.
“We have to recover and prepare for Saturday when we play Leicester. It is great for the boys, two clean sheets after a tough period. You get that in life and it is about how you respond and the players have been fantastic.
“It was important we put pressure on them and get the crowd with us. It is not easy to do because they are a top team playing with confidence.