CHAMPIONS LEAGUE ROUNDUP – MATCHDAY V
Lacklustre Liverpool, Le Parisiens take full advantage…
Everything seemed to change for Liverpool after they went to Belgrade and came back empty-handed in match-day four. Against Paris St Germain, they were very poor in all departments of the pitch. Bar the penalty that halved the deficit late in the second half, Gianluigi Buffon in the PSG goal barely had anything to do. Now Liverpool go into the final match-day needing to win by at least two goals against Napoli. They would need to create another one of their great European nights at Anfield.
Credit has to go to Thomas Tuchel and PSG as they played to their strengths and did not give Liverpool (especially the midfielders) any time on the ball. Neymar had arguably his best game in a PSG shirt against one of the biggest European teams. Now, all they need to do now is get a result in Belgrade.
Tottenham revives Champions League hopes..
Tottenham looked so certain of going out of Europe’s elite competition before this game. Even during the game, it was looking like a draw would not be enough to give them a chance. Ten minutes from time, Delle Alli, who is gradually getting back to his best, set-up Eriksen for him to score the game’s only goal. Now all Tottenham needs to do be sure of going through is to go to the Camp Nou and get a win (getting a draw will be dependent on Inter Milan’s result). Not too hard is it?
Manchester United go through..
It had always looked like the qualification for the second spot in this group was down to a direct battle between Manchester United and Valencia, but after Manchester United’s win in Turin, the table took an interesting turn. Against Young Boys though, Manchester United had to wait till the dying seconds for the winning goal. Who else but Rashford Lukaku Martial Sanchez Lingard Mata Fellaini? Who else? They can even do one better and climb to the top if they win their final game and Juventus lose to Young Boys. Now, that would be something.
Bayern Munich back to form?
Bayern Munich put five goals pat Benfica with Arjen Robben winding back the clock with Lewandowski and Ribery getting in on the act as well. The positive is that they have qualified with one game to spare, a game that is against an Ajax side that would also be vying for top spot. The question to take from this game is, ‘Did Bayern Munich actually up their game or was Benfica so poor that their performance looked better than it actually was?’
Real Madrid get the job done..
After an atrocious football game over the weekend, Real Madrid went to Rome, scored two quick goals in the second half and left with a clean sheet. It sounds like it was a very efficient performance. It really was not. Roma missed some good chances and could easily have gotten a draw save for some very poor finishing. You just get the feeling that this Madrid side still has a long way to go in terms of improvement. They need to do it quick because come the knockout stages, one poor 90-minute game and it could easily be over for the defending Champions.
Posted by: Abiodun Motunrayo
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