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UEFA Champions League

Champions League
Champions League. Image Credits: Twitter
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Chelsea Triumph Their Second UEFA Champions League

Europe is all blue as Chelsea defeated Manchester City to win the UEFA Champions League 2020-21. This was their second Champions League win.

Manchester City entered the game as the favorites of the match with an excellent recent winning record. They are of course the Premier League 2020-21 champions. No doubt everyone was counting them as the favorites. But Chelsea did it like a boss, they were never the underdog. They won the game and they clearly deserved it.

Champions League
Champions League. Image Credits: Twitter

Chelsea Triumph Their Second UEFA Champions League

Chelsea made the first and only breakthrough of this game in the 42nd minute. The German international Kai Havertz scored the first goal for the blue side. The twenty one year struggled throughout the season for Chelsea.

It was very difficult for him to carry the burden of £71 million transfer kitty on his back. But he finally scored the most vital goal of his career and it was enough to justify the price tag, as of now. Of course he played the best football of his career so far, and this could seriously be the most memorable one.

Champions League
Champions League. Image Credits: Twitter

Christian Pulisic could seal the deal for Chelsea earlier, during the 72nd minute of the game he got the Manchester City defence exposed and Ederson made a tremendous save to keep his side in the game and deny the cushion for Chelsea.

N’Golo Kante was arguably the best man on the pitch. The French international once again proved why he is one of the best in the world.

There were multiple injuries in the game as both sides suffered from the unwanted injuries. Thiago Silva was the first man who had to go off the with an injury during the 37th minute of the game. In the second half it was Kevin De Bryune of Manchester City who had to be sacrificed because of another unwanted injury.

Champions League
Champions League. Image Credits: Twitter

Chelsea had been excellent throughout the game. After the arrival of Thomas Tuchel to the blue side of London, they have been excellent. Manchester City on the other hand started quite competitive but could not keep the intensity going with the departure of De Bryune.

Sportzwiki Man of the Match – N’Golo Kante

Paul Scholes
Paul Scholes Image Credits: Twitter
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Paul Scholes Reveals The Two Teams That Prevented Manchester United From Winning The UEFA Champions League Titles

Former Manchester United legend, Paul Scholes has revealed the two best teams he has ever played against in his illustrious career with the English giants. Paul Scholes made his full debut for Manchester United in the 1994–95 season. He went on to make 718 appearances for United, the third-highest number of appearances by any player for the club.

Scholes announced his retirement from playing in May 2011 and was appointed as a coach at Manchester United. However, he returned to playing in January 2012 and went on to play one more season for the club before retiring again in May 2013.  With United, Scholes won 25 trophies including 11 Premier League titles (more than any other English player) and two UEFA Champions League titles.

Paul Scholes
Paul Scholes Image Credits: Twitter

However, there were a couple of teams that Scholes believes, prevented Manchester United from winning more Champions League titles.

Paul Scholes Reveals The Two Teams That Prevented Manchester United From Winning More Champions League Titles

Paul Scholes has lamented the “ridiculous” Real Madrid and Barcelona teams that thwarted Manchester United in the Champions League, insisting that ‘in any other era we might have won five or six European Cups’.

“We were quite unlucky really. In any other era we might have won four, five, or six European Cups,” the Red Devils legend told the A Goal In One Podcast. “But the teams that were about – you look at Pep Guardiola’s FC Barcelona team. Jesus, how good were they?!” Paul Scholes further said

Lionel Messi
Lionel Messi With The 2011 UCL Trophy. Image Credits: Daily Mirror

“You could go right through the team. In midfield, you had Andres Iniesta, Xavi, Sergio Busquets and Lionel Messi. Henry on the left. Centre halves of Gerard Pique and Carlos Puyol. Just unreal. They’re without doubt the best team I’ve played against. They’re one of the best teams that has ever been,” Scholes added.

We Got Absolutely Battered At The Bernebeau: Paul Scholes

“If I go a bit further back I think of the Real Madrid side that we played against,” said the 45-year-old. “We got absolutely battered in the Bernabeu one year. 3-1 it was in the first game but what a team that was. It’s not far away from that Barcelona team,” Scholes added.

 

Roberto Carlos Ronaldo Nazario
Roberto Carlos & Ronaldo Nazario Credits: Getty Images

“They had the Brazilian Ronaldo, Zinedine Zidane, Luis Figo, Redondo was unreal, Raul, Roberto Carlos, Hierro, Iker Casillas in goal, that was a team that was just ridiculous. We came up against some ridiculous teams. We did alright against them but Barcelona just had that edge over that great Real Madrid team,” Paul Scholes further said.

Also Read: David Luiz Keen On Extending His Stint With Arsenal

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Sergio Ramos
Sergio Ramos Wit The 2015 UCL Trophy. Image Credits: Twitter
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UEFA Champions League: Top 5 Man Of The Match Performances In The Final Over The Last 10 Years

UEFA Champions League, a competition where Ferraris race against Lambhorginis, is one of the most prestigious tournaments in world football, particularly club football. UEFA Champions League is the ultimate glory in European football and it is only a certain number of teams that make it into the competition every year.

Real Madrid have been the most successful club in the competition so far as they have managed to win a whopping 13 titles. Italian giants, AC Milan, follow Madrid on the second spot with 7 titles. Winning the Champions League is a matter of utmost glory in club football for any footballer. However, things get more illustrious when a footballer grabs a match-winning performance in the final of the tournament.

UEFA Champions League & UEFA Cup Draw
(Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images)

Today, we’ll take a look at the top-five man of the match performances in the UEFA Champions League final over the last 10 years.

Top 5 Man Of The Match Performances In The UEFA Champions League Final Over The Last 10 Years

5. Arjen Robben-2013 (Bayern Munich vs Borussia Dortmund)

Arjen Robben
Arjen Robben With The 2013 UCL Title Image Courtesy: FIFA

Arjen Robben has been a legend for Bayern Munich throughout his stint at the Allianz Arena. He has helped them win a plethora of matches and when he was at his prime, he was the second-best left-footed player in world football after Lionel Messi. 2013 had been a year of history for Bayern as they won the treble that year.

However, their most important win of the campaign was the UEFA Champions League title which they won beating arch-rivals, Borussia Dortmund in the final. Bayern won the dramatic final at the Wembley Stadium by 2-1 as Arjen Robben scored a late winner for the Bavarians to rejoice their title glory as Arjen Robben emerged as their saviour in the Der Klassiker final.

Lionel Messi
Lionel Messi Credits: Twitter
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Quique Setien Hits Back At Lionel Messi For His Champions League Comment On FC Barcelona

Things aren’t really good at FC Barcelona and now behind the scenes discourse has come to limelight as the head coach, Quique Setien has hit back on Lionel Messi’s comments about the club not winning the UEFA Champions League.

Notably, Lionel Messi, the greatest FC Barcelona player of all-time and one of the greatest footballers of all time, had openly said that the club can not win the UEFA Champions League with the standard of football that they are currently playing. Although FC Barcelona is considered to be one of the best teams across Europe, they have been facing a drought as far as Champions League title is concerned.

Lionel Messi
Lionel Messi Credits: Getty Images

Lionel Messi has been pretty vocal of his desire of lifting the Champions League trophy and also with his dissent from the club for not being able to do so.

Quique Setien Hits Back At Lionel Messi For His Champions League Comments

“Messi’s words I think have created a big debate,” Setien told beIN Sports.

Quique Setien
Quique Setien Credits: AFP

“We are convinced that we can win the Champions League. We have to improve some things, but without a doubt, we are convinced that the team has the potential to win the Champions League. We can win it. We are convinced we can win the Champions League, of course, we can,” Quique Setien added.

There Has Been A Dearth Of Champions League Titles At FC Barcelona

The Catalans won the Champions League twice under Pep Guardiola in 2009 and 2011, but have only lifted the trophy once more since then. Their last Champions League victory came in the year 2015 when they beat Juventus by 3-1 in the final.

FC Barcelona
FC Barcelona Credits: Twitter

What irks Lionel Messi more is the fact that arch-rivals, Real Madrid, on the other hand, have won it four out of the last six seasons, including three successive years. Indeed, the Madrid club has won the European Cup a staggering 13 times, six times more than second-placed AC Milan, and eight times more than Barca.

Also Read: Ryan Giggs Opens Up On The Similarities Between Louis Van Gaal And Sir Alex Ferguson As Managers Of Manchester United

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Kroos, Mariano partly rejoin Real Madrid training

Madrid, Dec 10:  Real Madrid’s German midfielder Toni Kroos and Spanish forward Mariano on Monday participated in part of the team train ahead of Los Blancos’ upcoming UEFA Champions League clash against CSKA Moscow.

Kroos has been struggling with knee injury he had sustained during their away 2-0 win over Roma in the Champions League, but it seemed to be a thing of the past as did the muscle issue Mariano suffered from as both participated in the first part of the training session, reports Efe news.

Meanwhile, Brazilian midfielder Casemiro as well as Spanish defenders Sergio Reguilon and Nacho Fernandez continued their recovery process from their respective injuries on the sideline, according to the club.

Real Madrid has already secured a berth in the Champions League knockout stages with their win over Roma in the Italian capital on November 27.

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Barça midfielder Coutihno back at training after injury, may play vs Atletico

Barcelona, Nov 21: Barcelona attacking midfielder Philippe Coutinho returned to group training on Wednesday, after being sidelined for two weeks due to a thigh injury.

The Brazil international’s return increases the chances that he will play in Saturday’s away game against Atletico Madrid, reports Efe news.

Coutinho had been down since November 6, when he picked up a small tear in the femoral biceps of his left leg during Barça’s 1-1 UEFA Champions League tie with Inter Milan.

Some of coach Ernesto Valverde’s players were also back at training after international duty, including Spain midfielder Sergio Busquets and defenders Sergi Roberto and Jordi Alba, as well as Netherlands goalkeeper Jasper Cillessen.

Barcelona leads the Spanish league with 24 points, one point ahead of Athletico Madrid, which is in third place on goal differential behind Sevilla.

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UEFA Champions League: Red-Hot Barcelona Blow Away Tottenham Hotspur At Wembley .

Lionel Messi mesmerised Wembley once again as Barcelona dented Tottenham Hotspur’s UEFA Champions League hopes by thrashing them 4-2 on Wednesday.

Playing at the Wembley for the first time since inspiring Barcelona to the Champions League title against Manchester United in 2011, Messi scored twice, hit the post twice and had big roles in others goals, helping the La Liga champions inflict back-to-back defeat on Tottenham in Group B.

UEFA Champions League: Red-Hot Barcelona Blow Away Tottenham Hotspur At Wembley . 1
Tottenham Hotspur vs Barcelona (UEFA Champions League, Credits: Getty)

Barcelona made a perfect start to the night. Philippe Coutinho set the tone for his side after scoring inside two minutes. The Brazil international, however, should thank Hugo Lloris for the howler that led to the goal.

READ MORE – Neymar praises PSG coach ahead of Champions League game

Ivan Rakitic then doubled Barcelona’s lead with a spectacular half-volley (28).

UEFA Champions League: Red-Hot Barcelona Blow Away Tottenham Hotspur At Wembley . 2
Tottenham Hotspur vs Barcelona (UEFA Champions League, Credits: Getty)

Messi should have put the game to the bed but hit the same post twice in three minutes. Harry Kane’s goal seven minutes after the restart revived the home side’s slim hopes. However, Messi quickly restored the two-goal lead (56). There was, however, no end to the drama as Erik Lamela (66) set up a thrilling finish. But in the end, Messi deservedly scored the goal to bring an end to a classic game.

MUST READ – UEFA Champions League 2018

Victor Wanyama and Harry Winks proved no match for Barcelona’s midfielders. Messi started the move for the first goal when he  bent a pass behind Kieran Trippier for Jordi Alba. Lloris then scampered from his line for the ball despite having no chance and paid a big process.

Alba slid the ball to Coutinho who opened the scoring by firing home into an unguarded net.

Barcelona then doubled their lead 5 minutes from the half-time. Messi once again started the game. The Argentine, who opened his Champions League campaign with a hat-trick, curled a ball over the top that Coutinho somehow managed to keep in play. The former Liverpool man then flicked the ball which found Rakitic before the Croatia star slotted home a sensational volley.

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After the break, Messi took command of the midfield. The five-time Ballon D’Or winner terrorised the home side with his dribbling and control. He soon created two chances for himself but ended up hitting the left post on both the occasions. But just when it looked Spurs are well out of the game, Kane scored one. However, 4 minutes later Messi restored Barcelona’s two-goal lead.

UEFA Champions League: Red-Hot Barcelona Blow Away Tottenham Hotspur At Wembley . 3
Tottenham Hotspur vs Barcelona (UEFA Champions League, Credits: Getty)

Unfazed by Barcelona’s attack, Spurs continued to press and soon got the second goal when Lamela found the back of the net. The home side continued to trouble Barcelona but were denied by some last-ditch Barca defending.  And just when stadium was sensing a dramatic equaliser, Messi stamped his authority by scoring the fourth and final goal of the game.

UEFA Champions League: Red-Hot Barcelona Blow Away Tottenham Hotspur At Wembley . 4
Tottenham Hotspur vs Barcelona (UEFA Champions League, Credits: Getty)

 

Neymar Jr
Neymar Jr
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Neymar praises PSG coach ahead of Champions League game

Paris, Oct 2:  Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) forward Neymar Jr on Tuesday hailed his coach Thomas Tuchel, just one day ahead of PSG’s home game against Red Star Belgrade in the UEFA Champions League group stage.

At a pre-match press conference, Brazil forward reiterated that working under the German coach has helped him as a player since Tuchel aspires to win every game, reports Efe news.

“He has brought something new to Paris Saint-Germain,” Neymar said, according to the French club’s official website.

MUST READ – FIFA

“He is a young coach that knows what he wants. He shows us that every training session. Working with him is a great experience,” the Brazilian star explained.

Neymar acknowledged that he is not in top physical form at the moment, but does his best in training sessions to improve his performance.

“I’m not yet back to 100 percent. But nobody is, because it’s only the start of the season. Teams plan to be ready in February, March,” he said.

Neymar stressed that he is delighted to be able to take part in PSG matches, noting that “I’m always happy to be on the pitch, playing football.”

“I try to improve every day, every match, to help my team as much as possible,” he added.

READ MORE – John Abraham plans to set up football academy in Shillong

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UEFA Champions League 2018: David Silva The Hero As Manchester City Win Their First Game Of The Season

Manchester City opened their account in this season’s UEFA Champions League with a come-from-behind away win to Hoffenheim in Group F.

After being shocked by Lyon in their season-opener, Pep Guardiola’s men looked set for further shock when Ishak Belfodil scored inside a minute to put the hosts ahead. However, the English champions bounced back in style to get their campaign back on track. Sergio Aguero scored the equaliser in the 8th minute before David Silva slotted home three minutes from full-time to seal the win for the visitors.

Hoffenheim took the lead just  44 seconds after kicking off their first ever home Champions League fixture. Kerem Demirbay slotted the ball through for Belfodil in the area and the striker swept home past Ederson to kick-start wild celebrations in the stands.

UEFA Champions League 2018: David Silva The Hero As Manchester City Win Their First Game Of The Season 5
Hoffenheim vs Manchester City (UEFA Champions League)

But the home side’s joy was short-lived. It took City just seven minutes to hit back through Aguero. Silva played a sublime ball to Leroy Sane who instead of going for the goal himself selflessly cut the ball back for Aguero. In the next moment, Aguero made no mistake in putting the ball inside the box.

READ MORE – 2018/19 UEFA Champions League Group Stage Draw Confirmed

The visitors had found there rhythm as they pressed for the lead.  They could have taken the lead in the 16th minute but Raheem Sterling missed the chance with only goalkeeper Oliver Baumann  to beat. Minutes after the half-hour mark, Baumann made yet another important save to deny Aguero.

UEFA Champions League 2018: David Silva The Hero As Manchester City Win Their First Game Of The Season 6
Hoffenheim vs Manchester City (UEFA Champions League)

On the other end, City were agonisingly close to conceding the second as Belfodil took advantage of a poor back pass from Aymeric Laporte to burst into the area in the 39th minute. However, Ederson got down low to deny him a second of the game.

Unlike the first half, the second-half did not see too many chances being  created.  But the visitors should have got a penalty in the 74th minute when Baumann swept Sane off his feet.  However, just when it looked City are set to drop points again, Silva hit the winner in the 87th minute.

UEFA Champions League 2018: David Silva The Hero As Manchester City Win Their First Game Of The Season 7
Hoffenheim vs Manchester City (UEFA Champions League)

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UEFA Champions League 2018: Lacklustre Manchester United Held At Home By Valencia

Valencia piled more misery on Jose Mourinho by walking away from Old Trafford with a point following a drab goalless stalemate with Manchester United in the UEFA Champions League. The draws extended Manchester United’s winless run at home to four games.

Under-fire Mourinho would have expected more from his team after back-to-back defeats against Derby and West Ham. However, the Red Devils rarely looked threatening. Barring Marcus Rashford’s free-kick that hit the crossbar, United did not create any clear cut chance. In fact, it was Valencia who controlled the game and threatened the home side on break.

UEFA Champions League 2018: Lacklustre Manchester United Held At Home By Valencia 8
Manchester United vs Valencia (UEFA Champions League)

United’s evening got off to a forgettable start. Mourinho’s men were caught in heavy traffic around Old Trafford before the game which led to a five-minute delay to the kick-off. And the players did little to make amends for it as the frustrated Old Trafford crowd booed them off after the referee blew the full-time whistle.

United are now without a win at Old Trafford in all competitions since the opening day of the season against Leicester.

READ MORE – UEFA Champions League: Ronaldo Sees Red on Juventus Debut, Lyon Stun Manchester City

The English outfit could not test goalkeeper Neto until the hour mark. United showed some urgency only in the dying minutes but Valencia managed to see off the late surge to hold on to an important draw.

UEFA Champions League 2018: Lacklustre Manchester United Held At Home By Valencia 9
Manchester United vs Valencia (UEFA Champions League)

With five minutes remaining, Anthony Martial was tripped just outside the area by Cristiano Piccini. Rashford hit the bar with the resulting free-kick from an acute angle. Shortly after, Romelu Lukaku had an excellent chance from a Luke Shaw corner. However, the Belgian couldn’t even get his header on target.

Prior to that, United enjoyed a dominating spell midway through the second-half.

For the first, Paul Pogba took a free-kick after Alexis Sanchez had been pushed over. The French World Cup-winner managed to evade the wall only to see his shot tipped round the far post.

UEFA Champions League 2018: Lacklustre Manchester United Held At Home By Valencia 10
Manchester United vs Valencia (UEFA Champions League)

Draw aside, United remain in a strong position to qualify from Group H. However, the latest performance will further worry Mourinho.

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