Mehdi Taremi joined Porto from Rio Ave in August 2020
Bruges (Belgium) (AFP) - Iran’s Mehdi Taremi scored twice to put Porto on the brink of reaching the Champions League last 16 as they beat Club Brugge 4-0 in Belgium on Wednesday.
Taremi’s contribution, as well as Evanilson and Stephen Eustaquio’s second-half goals, helped Porto gain revenge for a defeat by the same scoreline when the two sides first met in Group B in September.
Porto will reach the next round if Atletico Madrid fail to overcome Bayer Leverkusen later on Wednesday.
Atletico head to Portugal next Tuesday as the Germans host Brugge, already qualified, in the final round of group matches.
Porto goalkeeper Diogo Costa saved twice from a retaken penalty when the score was only 1-0.
“I think the penalties saved by Diogo were the most important moments of the game,” Taremi said.
“He did very well and we have to thank him.
“We didn’t think about the other teams, because if we do our job, we will get through the group. It all depends on us.”
Sergio Conceicao’s Porto were set on their way as attacker Taremi broke the deadlock just after the half-hour mark after Otavio’s assist.
Taremi’s effort also marked the first time that ex-Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet had been beaten in the competition this season.
The Belgians were handed a potential lifeline four minutes after the break when referee Michael Oliver and VAR decided to award them a penalty, judging Porto’s David Carmo had lashed out at Brandon Mechele.
Captain Hans Vanaken had his shot saved by Costa before Oliver spotted encroachment in the area and ordered the penalty to be retaken.
Dutch winger Noa Lang then stepped up but Costa denied the 23-year-old an equaliser.
Less than 10 minutes later Porto moved closer to three points as Brazilian Evanilson pounced on an Abakar Sylla mistake in his own box.
Their third followed with half an hour left after Mignolet parried Eustaquio’s first effort before the midfielder buried the rebound.
Taremi’s double was secured with 20 minutes left as he finished smoothly from Otavio’s pass to put the pressure firmly on Atletico.