Sunday, 27 November 2016

Champions League Matchday Five Review

The penultimate round of matches in the Champions League group stage saw a number of the places in the next stage wrapped up while others saw an early exit from the competition confirmed.

E- CSKA Moscow hosted Bayer Leverkusen knowing anything but a win would see them eliminated.

The visitors opened up an early lead through Volland after just 16 minutes and their lead looked to be enough to secure all three points until they were pegged back in the second half.

An equalising penalty from Natcho on 75 minutes ensured a share of the points and a 1-1 draw but meant that while Leverkusen advanced to the knockout stage, CSKA had a Europa League spot to battle for.

Tottenham will also battle for a Europa League spot after suffering a 2-1 defeat to Monaco who as a result win the group.

The French side opened the scoring three minutes after half time through Sidibe before Harry Kane levelled with a penalty on 52 minutes. The equality lasted barely a minute as Lemar sealed the winning strike for Monaco.

F- A record breaking 12 goal thriller between Borussia Dortmund and Legia Warsaw lit up the group with the Germans securing a place in the next stage.

The visitors took a surprise lead inside ten minutes through Prijovic before a two-minute brace from Shinji Kagawa was swiftly followed by a Nuri Sahin strike for 3-1 on 20 minutes.

Prijovic struck his second for 3-2 before efforts from Dembele and Marco Reus gave the hosts a 5-2 lead with just 32 minutes played. A second for Reus on 52 minutes was followed by Legia's third from Kucharczyk just before the hour mark.

The record breaking scoreline came in the final eight minutes as Passlack made it 7-3 to the hosts ahead of a deficit cutter from Nikolic two minutes later. The final strike was an unfortunate one for the Poles as Rzeznicak hit into his own net for 8-4.

Already qualified Real Madrid left it late to keep up their hopes of winning the group as they eliminated Sporting Lisbon with a 2-1 success.

Real took the lead on 29 minutes with Varane striking the opener and the hosts were left with an even harder task to comeback as they went down to ten with the dismissal of Pereira on 64 minutes. The numerical disadvantage didn't affect them from levelling with Silva slotting in a penalty on 80 minutes but Real secured the win three minutes from the end with a Karim Benzema effort.

G- FC Copenhagen and FC Porto remain in the fight for a spot in the next stage after sharing the points in a hard fought 0-0 draw.

Leicester City extended their unbeaten record and in turn advance as group winners after a 2-1 win over Club Brugge who are eliminated.

An early opener from Shinji Okazaki saw the Foxes ahead inside just five minutes before Riyad Mahrez doubled the lead with a penalty on the half hour mark. Brugge pulled one back through Izquierdo on 52 minutes but it proved to be only a consolation.

H- Olympique Lyonnais remain in the hunt for a spot in the next stage as they secured a 1-0 win away at Dinamo Zagreb who are eliminated.

The crucial strike came in the 72nd minute as Lacazette secured the three points for the French side.

A battle for qualification saw Juventus move top of the group and claim a spot in the next stage as they defeated Sevilla 2-1.

The Spanish side who will battle fellow challengers Lyon in the final game took an early lead inside nine minutes as Pareja struck.

They went down to ten men with the 35th minute dismissal of Vazquez and Juventus utilised their numerical advantage just before the interval as Marchisio levelled for 1-1. The Italians left it late to wrap up the win as a six minute double from Bonucci and Mario Mandzukic confirmed a 3-1 victory.

A- Arsenal and Paris Saint Germain wrapped up qualification in a 2-2 draw that left top spot up for grabs into the final round of games.

Edinson Cavani put the visitors ahead on 19 minutes but the Gunners went into the interval level after a penalty from Olivier Giroud. 

The hosts completed the comeback just before the hour mark as Marco Verratti scored an own goal but a second own goal saw PSG salvage a point as Alex Iwobi struck on 77 minutes.

Ludogorets Razgrad and FC Basel remain with out a win between them after sharing the points in a 0-0 draw with the hosts retaining third spot in the group as the battle for the Europa League spot goes to the final round of games.

B-Besiktas and Benfica remain in the hunt to both advance to the next stage after sharing the points in a six-goal thriller.

The visitors raced into a 3-0 advantage inside 31 minutes with an opener on ten minutes from Guedes followed by efforts from Semedo and Fesja.

The hosts cut the gap as Tosun struck just before the hour mark before a two goals in the final seven minutes saw them secure a 3-3 draw. Ricardo Quaresma slotted in a penalty before Aboubakar levelled in the 89th minute.

Napoli missed the chance to confirm a spot in the next stage as they were held to a 0-0 draw by Dynamo Kiev who needed a win to avoid elimination.

C- Manchester City secured a place in the next stage as they came from behind to salvage a 1-1 draw at Borussia Monchengladbach.

Gladbach led after 23 minutes through Araujo's opener before David Silva drew City level just before the interval for 1-1.

Both sides ended the evening with ten men after Lars Stindl was dismissed for the hosts on 51 minutes and Fernandinho for City on 63 minutes.

Already qualified Barcelona claimed top spot in the group with a 2-0 win away to Celtic who will finish bottom of the group. Lionel Messi struck both goals with a 24th minute opener from the penalty spot followed up by his second on 55 minutes.

D- FC Rostov secured a surprise 3-2 win against already qualified Bayern Munich to move into third spot in the group.

Douglas Costa fired the Germans ahead on 35 minutes before Azmoun levelled for the hosts just before half-time. A penalty from Poloz put the hosts 2-1 ahead before a rapid reply saw Bernat level at 2-2. The win was sealed for the Russians by a Noboa strike on 66 minutes.

Atletico Madrid kept up their hopes of a perfect campaign as they made it five wins from five games with a 2-0 win at home to PSV Eindhoven. Kevin Gameiro fired hosts ahead on 55 minutes before Antoine Griezmann secured the win on 66 minutes.