Zenit St Petersburg left it late as they scraped a 1-0 UEFA Champions League victory at 10-man Porto on Tuesday.
Aleksandr Kerzhakov's 86th-minute header was enough for the visitors, who laboured to take advantage of Porto playing much of the game a man down.
The hosts found themselves reduced to 10 after six minutes of the Group G clash as Hector Herrera saw yellow twice in the space of a minute.
However, Zenit failed to make the extra man count for much of the game and, aside from a pair of Hulk chances in the second half, rarely threatened home goalkeeper Helton.
Porto more than held their own after the early setback, and twice hit the woodwork in a tie they arguably deserved to win. But the deadlock was finally broken four minutes from time as Kerzhakov sealed the three points for Luciano Spalletti's men.
The victory lifts Zenit to second in the pool, leapfrogging Porto in the process.
Paulo Fonseca made wholesale changes from the Porto team that triumphed over Segunda Liga basement club Trofense in the Taca de Portugal third round on Saturday.
Zenit, meanwhile, brought Cristian Ansaldi, Viktor Faizulin and Oleg Shatov in for Domenico Criscito, Konstantin Zyryanov and the suspended Axel Witsel after their 2-0 Russian top-flight win against CSKA Moscow last Friday.
The game got off to a nightmare start for the hosts at a far-from-full Estadio do Dragao, with Herrera sent off after receiving two yellow cards within six minutes.
His first for a reckless challenge on former Porto striker Hulk was immediately followed by a foolish second for encroachment on the resulting free-kick, meaning the Mexican marked his full Champions League debut with the fastest dismissal for a double booking in the competition’s history.
Despite being a man down, it was Porto who had the better of the chances early on, with Lucho Gonzalez rattling the angle between post and crossbar from 20 yards after 20 minutes and a stretching Lica unable to take advantage of the rebound.
Zenit struggled to settle and were reduced to speculative efforts from distance, with their best chance of the half being a curling Roman Shirokov effort from the edge of the area that drifted just beyond the far post.
With the match crying out for an injection of energy after the break, Porto substitute Silvestre Varela provided something of a spark as he cut in from the right, skipping past two defenders in the process, before skewing his strike wide of the left post.
Moments later at the other end, Hulk robbed Nicolas Otamendi of possession just outside the penalty area, but was denied by the outstretched foot of Helton after finding himself through one-on-one with the goalkeeper.
And Helton had to be alert again in the 65th minute, as Hulk powered a thunderbolt of a free-kick in his direction from 25 yards. It was too hot to handle, but the Brazilian punched clear to deny his former team-mate.
Varela, who looked lively after replacing Lica, went close for the hosts once again with just over 10 minutes left to play. He turned on the edge of the area and fired an effort against the Zenit crossbar, with goalkeeper Yuri Lodygin beaten.
However, it was Zenit who finally opened the scoring as Kerzhakov rose highest to head home from an excellent cross from Hulk on the right wing.
|16||H. Herrera||5' 6'|
|Coach: Paulo Fonseca|
for Licá 53'
for Josue 75'
for L. González 87'
|Emelec 3 Barcelona 0 (4-1 agg): Bolanos brace seals title defence|
|Pioli: Lazio did not switch off|
|No Park in South Korea´s Asian Cup squad|
|Gignac: Marseille lead ´a huge boost´|
|Simeone applauds Griezmann´s hat-trick|
|Redknapp vows to keep QPR sharpshooter Austin|
|Santiago Wanderers 1 Palestino 6 (agg 2-9): 36-year drought ends for visitors|
|Juan Aurich 2 Sporting Cristal 3 (aet, agg 4-5): Chavez hands visitors Peruvian title|
|Liga del Futbol Profesional Boliviano Review: Bolivar win title|
|Mancini plays down Lennon transfer rumours|
|Ligue 1 Review: Marseille end 2014 top of the table, Lyon leapfrog PSG|
|Kovacic has mixed emotions after Inter draw|
|Serie A Review: Lazio go third despite Inter rally, Sampdoria held|
|La Liga Review: Griezmann the man for Atleti, Villarreal gain fifth straight win|
|Primeira Liga Review: Benfica win six straight|
|Athletic Bilbao 1 Atletico Madrid 4: Griezmann hat-trick seals comeback win|
|Inter 2 Lazio 2: Hosts rally to claim draw|
|McCoist makes Rangers exit|
|Sturridge on course for January return - Rodgers|
|Liverpool getting back on track, says Rodgers|
|Wenger bemoans failure to defend set-pieces|
|Bundesliga Review: Hoffenheim enjoy big win, Freiburg falter late on|
|Zorc: Dortmund to stick with Klopp|
|Liverpool 2 Arsenal 2: Bandaged Skrtel rescues a draw|
|I have no problem with Payet, insists Bielsa|
|Eredivisie Review: Ajax leave it late, Vitesse finally win|
|Pardew rues over-zealous Newcastle approach|
|Benitez hopeful ahead of Supercoppa|
|I nearly took Johnson off - Poyet|
|Johnson revels in derby late show|
|Juventus must maintain focus, warns Allegri|
|Newcastle United 0 Sunderland 1: Johnson settles derby|
|Carlos leaves Sivasspor post|
|Dundee United 2 Celtic 1: Ciftci inspires surprise win|
|Mourinho against use of independent panels|
|Hartlepool not interested in signing Evans|
|Reed delighted with first Southampton start|
|Bremen agree Oztunali loan|
|Irvine backs Ideye to end goal drought|
|Carrick backs Falcao to kick on|
|Dortmund will come back stronger, vows Klopp|
|Bojan senior slams Barcelona|
|Eredvisie title not won yet - Depay|
|Sterling eager to catch Arsenal cold|
|Monk: Ki will be sorely missed|
|Bruce looking to recall Hull duo from loan spells|
|Allardyce: Pearson deserves time|
|Sydney 0 Wellington Phoenix 2: Burns at the double|
|Real Madrid 2 San Lorenzo 0: Spanish giants complete triumphant 2014|
|McCoist: Departures sucking life out of Rangers|
|Hargreaves urges Sterling to stay put|
|Herediano 1 Deportivo Saprissa 1 (agg 3-5): Draw hands visitors consecutive titles|
|Tribulietx basks in Auckland City´s heroics|
|San Lorenzo´s Bauza applauds Ancelotti|
|Wenger: Sanchez a Footballer of the Year candidate|
|Chelsea like United´s treble-winning team - Hargreaves|
|Ancelotti: Copa del Rey victory inspired Real´s stunning run|
|La Liga Review: Catalan clubs triumph|
|Milan on right track - Inzaghi|
|Estoril 1 Vitoria Guimaraes 0: Kleber checks visitors´ momentum|
|Eredivisie Review: PSV in Eagles demolition, AZ downed at home|
|Garcia fumes at missed handball|
|Serie A Review: 10-man Milan frustrate Roma, Cesena rescue point|
|Roma 0 Milan 0: Hosts denied despite Armero red|
|Ligue 1 Review: PSG held at home, Monaco claim fourth win in a row|
|Bundesliga Review: Bremen off bottom with Dortmund win, Augsburg beat Gladbach|
|Blanc frustrated after drab stalemate|
|League Two Review: Moore´s Hartlepool tenure begins with draw|
|Championship Review: Blackpool hit for six, Middlesbrough slip up|
|Luis Enrique enjoying Pedro´s resurgence|
|Scottish Premiership Review: Aberdeen move to second, St Mirren misery continues|
|Koeman delighted with clinical Southampton|
|Pochettino tips in-form Kane for England call-up|
|Dortmund are ´idiots´ - Klopp|
|Allardyce hails ´outstanding´ Downing|
|Young admitted fault after Agbonlahor dismissal, says Lambert|
|Pearson not concerned with speculation|
|Bruce: Hull simply not good enough|
|Everton must improve - Martinez|
|Irvine rues sloppy defending|
|Cruz Azul 1 Auckland City 1 (2-4 on pens): Plucky New Zealanders claim third|
|Austin an example for young strikers - Redknapp|
|Dyche takes pride in White Hart Lane defeat|
|Arabian Gulf League Review: Al Shabab strike late to sink Al Dhafra, top two win|
|Swansea win vindicated changes, says Monk|
|Van Gaal frustrated by dropped points at Villa|
|Paris Saint-Germain 0 Montpellier 0: Champions frustrated by Courbis´ men|
|League One Review: Wilson gains landmark win as Bristol City and Swindon falter|
|Hull City 0 Swansea City 1: Monk´s men celebrate rare away win|
|Southampton 3 Everton 0: Koeman´s side back to winning ways|
|Aston Villa 1 Manchester United 1: Visitors held despite Agbonlahor dismissal|
|QPR 3 West Brom 2: Austin treble lifts hosts out of drop zone|
|Barcelona 5 Cordoba 0: Suarez opens Liga account in emphatic win|
|Tottenham 2 Burnley 1: Lamela stunner wins it for Spurs|
|West Ham 2 Leicester City 0: Carroll, Downing seal the points|
|Werder Bremen 2 Borussia Dortmund 1: Hosts off the bottom by adding to Klopp´s woes|
|Kerala Blasters 0 Atletico de Kolkata 1: Last-gasp Rafique seals inaugural title|
|Warnock fumes over disallowed goal|
|Pellegrini hails Silva quality|
|Betis announce Mel return|
|Huntelaar signs Schalke extension|
|Juventus v Napoli: Allegri backs Tevez to make difference|
|Stoke City v Chelsea: Mourinho calls for adaptability|
|Manchester City 3 Crystal Palace 0: Silva strikes twice as champions go joint-top|
|A-League Review: City snatch Melbourne derby honours, Glory pull further clear|
|Mancini: Inter can finish third|
|Sterling revels in Golden Boy award|
|Pellegrini: You never win a title in December|
|Rodgers bemoans Sanchez snub|
|Ayew confident Marseille can beat title rivals|
|Mercier: San Lorenzo won´t roll over to Real Madrid|
|Lukaku: I´m still 21|
|Mainz bemoan ´tragic´ loss to Bayern|
|Rojo ruled out for Villa trip|
|Lopetegui thrilled with Porto response|