It was a mixed week for English teams competing in the Champions League this week against some of Europe’s elite. Both Manchester City and Liverpool picked up three points in their respective groups. The Citizens top Group C with two wins from two, whilst the Kopites are second in Group E.
Chelsea earned all three points on the road, getting their first win in Europe this season against Lille but Tottenham Hotspur were dealt a crushing defeat at the hands of five-time Champions League winners Bayern Munich.
Tottenham Hotspur 2-7 Bayern Munich
It was certainly a night that Spurs fans will want to forget for a number of reasons. Spurs took the lead through Son Heung-min in the early stages of the game but unfortunately that is about as good as it got. Bayern Munich showed no signs of remorse and looked nothing like the side that had failed to win their last four out of five European games on English soil.
Ruthless in front of goal, the German Champions eased to victory against a Spurs side who looked void of any confidence which will concern Mauricio Pochettino. Sometimes you witness games where teams are clinical in front of goal and fail to miss any of the chances that come their way and that’s exactly how Bayern were. Serge Gnabry, a player who Arsenal let go for £5 million scored four goals on the night and ran Spurs ragged.
If you’re one to read into statistics and analysis then Spurs had a higher xG than Bayern Munich, meaning they were more likely to score more goals than the German side which just goes to show the clinical nature of their front line. A night to forget for Spurs but they’ve still got a good chance to get out of the club.
Manchester City 2-0 Dinamo Zagreb
Manchester City continue their European charge with a routine win over Croatian team Dinamo Zagreb. City had almost 82% possession throughout the match and registered 20 shots at goal so the score line really did flatter Dinamo Zagreb.
Goals from English starlets Raheem Sterling and Phil Foden sealed the three points for Man City. They’re the only team in their group with a 100% record and Pep Guardiola will be desperate to win the competition with Manchester City this year.
Pep Guardiola apologised to Foden in his post-match interview over the youngsters playing time. Pep said: “He deserves to play. I want to give him minutes. Every time I don’t play him, I am in front of him saying I’m sorry. But it’s Kevin De Bruyne there, Rodri, Bernardo Silva, David Silva, Gundogan, I’m so sorry. I know the best way to grow up is to play minutes, but he’s so young.”
With many other young English players moving on from their respective clubs for minutes, including former City man Jadon Sancho, the club will certainly look to include Foden more in the future.
Liverpool 4-3 Red Bull Salzburg
Is there ever a dull game involving Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool team? We don’t think there is. Liverpool squandered a three goal lead against an underrated Red Bull Salzburg side.
Three sumptuous goals from Liverpool in the first half gave them the lead. It’s something we just expect from this team now with its rock and roll football. Sadio Mane scored against his old club, much to the delight of the Anfield faithful.
However, Salzburg scored three and they were fully deserved as Klopp branded this team as ‘one of the most underrated sides in the competition.’ They levelled through Erling Haland, the son of former Man City defender Alf Haland. He’s been closely monitored by a whole host of European clubs after already netting four hat-tricks this season, aged just 19.
Lille 1-2 Chelsea
Chelsea’s European quest is well underway as they gained their first win in the competition this season with a victory of LOSC Lille.
In-form Tammy Abraham got the Blues off the mark before Lille levelled the scoring in the first half. It was looking as if a point on the road was better for Chelsea than it was for Lille but Willian scored in the latter stages of the game for Chelsea, earning them a huge three points. The Brazilian scored from a near impossible angle, hitting his volley into the ground and over the keeper.
Frank Lampard was delighted after the game and said: “It feels really good. This was a really hard place to come, added to the pressure of not beating Valencia. And it was the first time for a few travelling in Europe. ‘Now Ajax have set their stall out in the group. This gives us confidence and points. Now the hard work begins.”