Monday, January 18

Champions League: Total debacle for Inter Milan


NDefending champion Bayern Munich, only Manchester City qualified for the round of 16 on Wednesday in the Champions League before the last two rounds of the group stage. England champions Liverpool FC, however, missed their first chance to jump into the round of the best 16. Chelsea FC, FC Barcelona as well as Juventus Turin and FC Sevilla had already qualified for the knockout phase on Tuesday.

In Borussia Mönchengladbach’s Group B, record winners Real Madrid kept close contact with the leading Rhinelanders with a 2-0 (0-0) win at Inter Milan. Eden Hazard (7th, penalty kick) and an own goal by the former Dortmund Achraf Hakimi (59th) significantly improved the starting position of the royal team around national player Toni Kroos for the preliminary round final spurt.

For Milan, however, who will also have to do without midfielder Arturo Vidal after a yellow-red card in the next game, the evening ended in a debacle. After the deserved defeat, in which a very weak Inter could only rarely set accents, the chance of advancing is almost gone.

Liverpool clearly beaten

In contrast, in Munich’s group A, the race for second place is still open. Atletico Madrid missed a preliminary decision in their favor with a zero number against Lokomotiv Moscow, so that bottom group RB Salzburg can still advance.

Manchester City kept their clean slate in Group C with international Ilkay Gündogan with a 1-0 (1-0) win at Olympiacos and made everything clear with their fourth group win. Due to the success in Greece after a goal by young star Phil Foden (36.), the team of coach Pep Guardiola has already secured its place in the round of the best 16. Behind the Citizens, after their 2-0 (1-0) victory at Olympique Marseille, FC Porto already had one more point to make it to the round of 16.

Meanwhile, Liverpool missed their first chance to move into the round of 16 in Group D through an unexpected and clear 0-2 (0-0) home defeat against Atalanta Bergamo. The German team manager Jürgen Klopp’s team had to give up points for the first time against the Italians. The decision in favor of the guests was made by national player Robin Gosens (64th) after Bergamo’s lead by Josip Ilicic (60th).

Ajax Amsterdam took advantage of the Reds slip and, with a 3-1 (0-0) win against FC Midtjylland, they were level with Bergamo within striking distance of the English champions, who are only two points ahead of the pursuing duo.


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