Porto persevere to down dogged Dynamo
FC Porto 3-2 FC Dynamo Kyiv
The resilient visitors twice came from behind but ultimately had no answer for Jackson Martinez's goal 12 minutes from time in an entertaining game.
FC Porto maintained their 100% start to Group A as they shaded a five-goal thriller against FC Dynamo Kyiv to move to the brink of the UEFA Champions League knockout stage.
In a game of spectacular goals, Silvestre Varela and Jackson Martinez twice gave Porto the lead, with Dynamo levelling through Oleh Gusev and Ideye Brown, before Martinez's second of the night settled matters. A point when these sides meet again in Ukraine in a fortnight will seal progress for the Portuguese title holders with two matches to spare.
The visitors, overseen by Oleksiy Mykhaylychenko because of Oleh Blokhin's ill health, began brightly and forced an early scare. Miguel Veloso, returning to his homeland, provided it as he delivered a wicked inswinging corner that was heading in until the alert Helton intervened, tipping over.
Two minutes later Porto were in front, however, with a goal of real quality. Lucho González, who had scored the winner when these teams last met three years ago, slipped away from Yevhen Khacheridi and played the ball into space on the edge of the area. Varela controlled before mowing an unstoppable shot into the roof of the net.
Back came Dynamo, with Helton touching Veloso's right-footed effort around the post before the midfielder's set-piece delivery did more damage as Gusev nodded in following a corner.
Vítor Pereira's side battled hard to regain the advantage, yet a well-organised Dynamo kept the hosts at arm's length until a moment of magic from James Rodríguez on 36 minutes. The winger split open the defence with a lovely dinked pass and fellow Colombian Martinez held off Khacheridi before driving low into the bottom corner.
Mykhaylychenko's men started the second period determined to find a route back into the contest yet were soon living on their nerves again when Martinez fizzed a volley over following Danilo's cross.
Helton had to be at his best in the 71st minute to deny Ideye when Porto failed to clear a corner but when the equaliser arrived a minute later, it was of the highest order. Andriy Yarmolenko picked out Ideye with a lateral pass and the Nigerian controlled with his chest before firing high into the net.
Still Porto would not be denied, and again Lucho made a captain's contribution, sending in a perfect cross from the right for Martinez to sweep in the decisive blow.
Best Free Bet Offers - Provided by engagesuperleague.co.uk
Click any of the bookmakers name to activate your free bet now.
Deposit £20, bet with £40. Create a Unibet account here >>.
Get free 5£ no deposit required on casino. Create a Betfair account here >>.
Deposit £200, bet with £400. Create a Bet365 account here >>.
Deposit £25, bet with £50. Create a new Offsidebet account here >>.
Deposit 0, bet with £30. Create a new Sky Bet account here >>.