Pepe ‘accepts’ Porto can take Chelsea out of the Champions League on their approach to lifting the prize and says the Premier League club’s new spending binge ‘doesn’t make any difference’ in front of the quarter-last conflict.
Chelsea face Porto on Wednesday night in the main leg of their quarter-last tie as they bid to win the Champions League for just the second time in their set of experiences.
Thomas Tuchel’s side set out a marker with a great triumph over Atletico Madrid in the past round, yet now face a Porto side who took out Italian monsters Juventus.
Many view Porto as the most vulnerable group left in the Champions League yet Pepe – who won the competition multiple times at Real Madrid – says the Portuguese side can create another resentful against Chelsea.
The Blues, who are presently fifth in the Premier League, spent more than £200million during the previous summer’s exchange window on any semblance of Timo Werner, Kai Havertz and Ben Chilwell, yet Pepe says the expense of Chelsea’s crew ‘doesn’t make any difference’ as Porto hope to arrive at the semi-finals.
‘On the off chance that I didn’t trust it [that Porto can win the Champions League], I wouldn’t awaken each day to come and prepare at Olival [Porto’s preparation ground] with the energy I have for football,’ Pepe said at the pre-match public interview on Tuesday.
‘I generally accept that it is feasible to win the Champions League with FC Porto.
‘The credit is because of our mentor who makes us the first to accept his thoughts. Today there are no simple games and there is a ton of proof for that.
‘Having confidence in our work and carefully following what the mentor requests from us, we generally have numerous prospects to dominate matches and to beat difficulties like this.
‘Chelsea have a crew that is esteemed at just about 700 million euros, yet that doesn’t make any difference. We as a whole realize that Chelsea have extraordinary players, yet we have arranged the game well and we will perceive what occurs in the hour and a half.
‘In football there are no convictions, however I trust that we can be well and be the group that we became accustomed to by our mentor and our fans.’
Porto will be the ‘home’ side on Wednesday evening however, because of movement limitations brought about by the Covid pandemic, the match will be played in Sevilla.
‘Indeed, even in various conditions, we play at home and we need to play with this angle,’ the 38-year-old safeguard added.
‘The group is well, positive and want that the game shows up to have the option to exhibit the work that it has never really mentor and our fans.
‘It is in every case great to play at home, since it helps us to remember our tones, however we are arranged and centered.
‘Not surrendering objectives at home is vital. In that sense, the group is engaged and arranged to make a decent game and not endure, which is likewise significant.’