Chelsea and United continue: Barcelona must hope for Bayern’s grace

Chelsea and United continue
Barcelona have to hope for the grace of Bavaria

Bayern Munich will decide Barcelona’s fate on the final day of the Champions League group stage. The Spanish giants are threatened with the preliminary round. Things are going better for defending champions Chelsea and Manchester United. In Bern, the spectators witness a wild game of birds.

The traditional Spanish club FC Barcelona must continue to fear for the round of 16. In the second game under new coach Xavi, the five-time title holder against Benfica Lisbon did not go beyond a 0-0. Although Barça are in second place with seven points ahead of Benfica (5), they will have to play at Bayern on the last day of the match. Should Barcelona not win against the German record champions on the last day of the game, they have to hope for help from Dynamo Kiev. Benfica won the direct comparison against the Catalans. Bayern have so far been victorious in five out of five Champions League games.

Xavi’s side scored a goal through Ronald Araújo in the closing stages, but the goal was preceded by an offside position. Benfica missed the chance in the last few minutes to open the door to the round of 16 with a win. After a counterattack in stoppage time, the former Frankfurt Haris Seferović lifted the ball over the German national goalkeeper Marc-André ter Stegen, but also next to the goal.

A win for Solskjaer

Defending champion FC Chelsea around team manager Thomas Tuchel, however, has bought his ticket for the Champions League round of 16. The English beat the already qualified Juventus Turin convincingly 4-0 (1-0) on Tuesday evening and on top of that sat at the top of the table in Group H. Center-back Trevor Chalobah (25th), Reece James (55th), Callum Hudson-Odoi (58th) and national player Timo Werner (90th + 5) scored the goals for Chelsea, who fought for group victory in the Fernduell with Juve on the last day of the match. Werner was substituted on after a long injury in the 72nd minute.

Chelsea’s league rivals Manchester United could once again rely on superstar Cristiano Ronaldo and also celebrated their entry into the knockout phase. Two days after separating from team manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, the English record champions won 2-0 (0-0) against Europa League winners Villarreal FC. Ronaldo (78th) and the former Dortmund Jadon Sancho (90th) scored the goals. It was United’s first away Champions League win since a win at Paris St. Germain in October 2020.

“It wasn’t easy days for anyone at the club,” said interim coach Michael Carrick. “This result feels almost like it was for Ole. If you are not satisfied with the results and are not in shape, both individually and as a team, everything cannot click right away. We had to show character and fight.”

Wolfsburg Group still wide open

In United’s group, Atalanta Bergamo has missed a big step towards the knockout phase. The club of the injured national player Robin Gosens separated in a wild game with 3: 3 (1: 1) from Young Boys Bern and remains in third place. On December 8th, the Italians will receive Villarreal for the final of the game. The Swiss team of the former Schalke coach David Wagner was eliminated despite a heroic performance.

Things remain very tight in Wolfsburg Group G. Thanks to the goal by Jonathan David (31st), Lille OSC defeated Austrian champions RB Salzburg 1-0 (1-0) and moved up to first place in the table (eight points). The Austrians around new national player Karim Adeyemi (7) lurk just behind them, followed by Sevilla (6) and Wolfsburg (5).

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