Champions League Group Stage Recap

UEFA Champions League Logo.

Messi vs. Ronaldo, and Manchester choked.

It’s been a crazy month in world European Football, and the packed month of December is starting off in an unpredictable manner as well.

In the predictable group A, last season’s champions dominated their group with no losses and a commanding 16 points. Atletico Madrid took second with a respectable nine points.

So… Group B… Inter in last, Shakhtar in third, Monchengladbach in second and Real Madrid in first. Inter and their team were filled with so much promise for this season but they disappointed so early, like some guys do. Monchengladbach forced their way through to the Champions League round of 16 on goal difference, despite their loss to RM in match-day six causing riots on social media. Their 60 win over Shakhtar in match-day three was the most likely difference between the two teams. Congrats to Monchengladbach for pulling this off.

Group H: Tuesdays and Wednesdays are Champions League day/night and still are, but some games have to be played at the same time to avoid the score of the other. With the fourth official at PSG and Istanbul match saying racist comments about the assistant coach of Istanbul, the game started by getting delayed, then was rescheduled for Wednesday. It should’ve been played when Manchester United and RB Leipzig were playing. To stay in this group, Manchester lost and blew being top of the group with three losses, to then head into third and the Europa league. RB Leipzig played almost flawlessly in the first half of the match, and the fullbacks played a big part of it. Angelino and Haidara were superb with goals to their names. Manchester’s five-man defense were almost helpless, as their only hope was Wan-bissaka and his great tackles. After subbing Van de Beek, Pogba, and Brandon Williams they still conceded a third goal, but after making their fourth substitution, Bruno Fernandes buried one from the spot to make it 31. Manchester looked good in the second half; they scored a second. Manchester United’s skipper Harry Maguire summed it up perfectly in my opinion: “It’s not good enough for this club to go out in the group in the Champions League. We’re very disappointed.” After piling the pressure in the second half it was just too late. Manchester lost 32, and PSG won 51 with superstars Neymar and Mbappe with a hat trick and a brace respectively. PSG topped the group with Leipzig in second on goal difference. I have high hopes for Mbappe and PSG in the Champions League this season. The only issue I have with the standings in Group H is that Manchester needed to tie one of their last two games to go through, but that's okay. Maybe they will acclimate well in Europa league.

The last dance? Messi and Ronaldo faced off once again. The all-time scorer and assister in the Champions League came out on top in a three-nil win with Juventus clinching first place in the group stage. Messi and Ronaldo are aliens on this planet and in the world of European Football, Ronaldo is a robot that looks more fit every time you see him. Then you have Messi, the one that when you even think he is cornered or in a slump, he pulls a rabbit out of the hat for you. Hopefully, this won’t be the last time they face off this Champions League campaign, with their illustrious careers winding down in time. And both Messi and Ronaldo were rumored for a move to Man City and Manchester United, respectively, over the last transfer window. Maybe the moves will go through, and we will know if Messi can do this on a rainy night in stoke, and Ronaldo will go back to where his career took off.

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