Friday, May 7, 2021

Premier League in Europe

The Champions League will feature an all-English final for a second time in three years after Manchester City and Chelsea won their semi-final ties. Manchester City defeated PSG, and former Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino, 2-0 on Tuesday to close out the tie versus the French giants. Riyad Mahrez scored both Manchester City goals at the Etihad and three of the four goals scored by the Citizens in the tie.

Mahrez’s second goal at the 63-minute mark punctuated the tie for a frustrated PSG squad who lost discipline and incurred a red card by Angel DiMaria just six minutes later. PSG’s Idrissa Gueye was already unavailable for the match due to a red card in the first leg. Phil Foden’s assist on Mahrez’s second goal made him the sixth Premier League player this season to record double figures in both goals and assists across all competitions. Manchester City reaches the Champions League final for the first time while manager Pep Guardiola ends a personal streak of four consecutive semi-final eliminations. Kylian Mbappe was unavailable Tuesday due to a calf injury and Neymar was foiled by a Manchester City defense which received outstanding performances by Ruben Dias and Oleksandr Zinchenko.  PSG were held without a shot on target. Chelsea will face their league rival in the final after Thomas Tuchel’s squad eliminated Real Madrid with a 2-0 victory at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday. Timo Werner and Mason Mount scored the goals for Chelsea while Edouard Mendy was called on to make several key saves to preserve the 18th clean sheet for Chelsea in 24 matches under manager Thomas Tuchel. Christian Pulisic, scorer of Chelsea’s goal in the first leg, began the match on the bench before coming on to assist on Mason Mount’s decisive clincher. N’golo Kante played a key part in the build up to both goals for Chelsea. Thomas Tuchel becomes the first manger to lead different teams to a Champions League final in consecutive years. Manchester United advanced to the Europa League final despite a 3-2 defeat at Roma. The Red Devils advance on aggregate because of the 6-2 win in the first leg at Old Trafford. Discipline lagged in the second half for United which relinquished a 1-0 halftime lead, perhaps understandable given the aggregate goal position at that point. David De Gea was outstanding in goal to prevent a nervier situation for United.  Edinson Cavani scored both goals for the Red Devils. Arsenal went out of the Europa League competition quietly in a goalless draw with Villarreal at the Emirates. Former Arsenal manager Unai Emery leads Villareal to the final versus Manchester United. Emery has won the Europa title three times in the past and brought Arsenal to the final just two years ago. Thursday’s loss served as an exclamation point to the lack of progress for Arsenal since Emery’s sacking and Arteta’s hiring. Arsenal looked listless and disorganized against the more organized Villareal side. Arsenal had two isolated chances where Pierre Emerick Aubameyang hit the post once in each half before he was surprisingly removed by Arteta with Arsenal in need of a goal. Arsenal failed to score for a tenth time this season across all competitions, the first time that has happened. Currently ninth in the Premier League table, seven points outside the league’s top six, Arsenal is staring at no European play next season for the first time in a quarter of a century.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please leave a comment: