Friday, October 14, 2022

Premier League in Europe

Champions League

Erling Haaland rested, and Manchester City failed to score in a goalless draw with Copenhagen. Manager Pep Guardiola sat his biggest star in advance of his club’s Premier League matchup with Liverpool this coming weekend. The offensive prospects for the Citizens were further damaged Tuesday when they were reduced to 10 men after a Sergio Gomez red card in the 30th minute. Manchester City, however, clinched qualification for the knockout round with the underwhelming draw in Denmark. Liverpool had no problem scoring goals in a 7-1 rout of Glasgow Rangers in Scotland. The win puts Liverpool in a comfortable second place position behind Napoli in its group while Rangers are yet to take a point in the competition. Mohamed Salah came in as a second half substitute Wednesday with Liverpool already comfortably ahead and proceeded to score the quickest hat trick in Champions League history over a 13-minute span of the second half. Salah now has 38 Champions League goals for Liverpool which surpasses Didier Drogba and Sergio Aguero for most career goals in Champions League by a player for any English club. Liverpool supporters can only hope that Wednesday’s offensive outburst represents a turning point in Salah’s frustrating season. Chelsea completed a double over AC Milan with a 2-0 win at legendary San Siro Stadium. AC Milan failed to score in its two group matches against Chelsea and were doomed on Tuesday by an 18th minute red card assessed against former Chelsea defender Fikayo Tomori. Jorginho converted the penalty and Pierre-Emerick later sealed the match for Chelsea with a goal against a club he once played for . The win moved Chelsea to the top of a very tightly contested group where all four clubs still have opportunity to advance. Son Heung-min scored goals before and after a Harry Kane penalty kick to power Tottenham Hotspurs’ 3-2 victory over Eintracht Frankfurt. The German side refused to surrender easily, however, with an 87th minute goal narrowing the margin amid a frenetic late match attacking storm by the Bundesliga club. Spurs moved top of their group with the victory. 

Europa and Conference League

Arsenal and Manchester United posted 1-0 victories over Bodo/Glimt and Omonia, respectively. The Gunners’ icy visit to the Arctic Circle proved successful when Bukayo Saka scored the winner in the 24th minute to keep Arsenal perfect in Europa League competition. Manchester United’s fortunes remained in the balance against Omonia until stoppage time despite the Red Devils dominating play and taking 34 shots. Scott McTominay’s 93rd minute winner provided a positive result to a frustrating afternoon at Old Trafford against the Cypriot side. Manchester United are a comfortable second in their group to Real Sociedad with two matches left to play. Said Benrahma and Jarrod Bowen gave West Ham a two-goal advantage which survived a late 89th minute penalty conversion by Anderlecht in a 2-1 Europa Conference League victory by the Hammers. West Ham remained perfect in the competition and has now clinched advancement to the knockout stage with two group matches yet to be played. Much of the action Thursday occurred in the London Stadium stands which were the site of chair and flare throwing by overly raucous supporters of the two clubs. The intervention of riot police was required to restore order off the pitch.

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