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Champions League group stage reaches climax

first_imgLATEST STORIES Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Coco’s house rules on ‘Probinsyano’ set England is already assured of having two group winners in the last 16, through Manchester City and Tottenham. By Wednesday, it could have five.On Tuesday, Manchester United needs just a point at home to CSKA Moscow to seal first place in Group A, and already qualified Chelsea will finish top of Group C by beating Atletico.A day later, Liverpool can secure top spot in Group E by beating Spartak.The English have never had five teams in the knockout stage of the Champions League.___GERMANY DISAPPOINTSGermany’s representation in the last 16 could come down to just one team, Bayern Munich, after disappointing campaigns from the Bundesliga’s best — Borussia Dortmund in particular.Dortmund, which reached the final in 2013, is already out after failing to win any of its group games and the side is competing with APOEL for the consolation of Europa League qualification from Group H. Ahead of its visit to Real Madrid on Wednesday, Dortmund has just two points from five games, the same as Cypriot team APOEL.Leipzig still has a chance to progress on its European debut but needs a favor from Monaco at Porto in Group G. Leipzig, which is level on points with Porto, hosts group winner Besiktas on Wednesday and will only go through if it secures more points than the Portuguese side.Bayern hosts Paris Saint-Germain on Tuesday needing to win by a four-goal margin to progress as Group B winner. PSG beat Bayern 3-0 in Paris and has a far superior goal difference. Kiss-and-tell matinee idol’s conquests: True stories or tall tales? It’s too early to present Duterte’s ‘legacy’ – Lacson Germany’s fourth team, Hoffenheim, didn’t make the group stage after losing in the playoffs to Liverpool.___MORE ITALIAN HEARTACHE?None of the three Italian clubs in the competition have advanced yet, setting up a nail-biting finish to the group phase that is being compared to Italy’s World Cup playoff loss to Sweden.Napoli appears to have the toughest path to the knockout stage. Fresh off a devastating loss at home to Juventus in Serie A, the Partenopei must win at Feyenoord on Wednesday and hope Manchester City beats Shakhtar Donetsk in Group F.Juventus, a finalist in two of the last three seasons, can go through with a win at Olympiakos in Group D on Tuesday or if Sporting Lisbon fails to beat Barcelona.Roma will also go through with a win against Qarabag in Group C on Tuesday, or if Atletico Madrid fails to beat Chelsea.Amid sluggish ticket sales, Roma coach Eusebio Di Francesco has been urging fans to show up at the Stadio Olimpico.“We want to win and sing together,” Di Francesco wrote on social media after opening a Twitter account. “On Tuesday we’ll need all of your support.”___ A look at what’s happening around the Champions League this week:___FEATURED STORIESSPORTSRedemption is sweet for Ginebra, Scottie ThompsonSPORTSMayweather beats Pacquiao, Canelo for ‘Fighter of the Decade’SPORTSAfter winning title, time for LA Tenorio to give back to Batangas folkATLETICO IN DANGERAtletico Madrid needs a lot to happen to keep alive its streak of four consecutive appearances in the knockout stage. Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Jake says relationship with Shaina ‘goes beyond physical attraction’ Margot Robbie talks about filming ‘Bombshell’s’ disturbing sexual harassment scene Jo Koy: My brain always wants to think funnycenter_img Manchester City’s David Silva celebrates scoring his side’s second goal during the English Premier League soccer match against West Ham United at the Etihad Stadium, Manchester, England, Sunday Dec. 3, 2017. (Martin Rickett/PA via AP)MANCHESTER, England — Eight places in the Champions League’s last 16 are still up for grabs heading into the final round of group games.Three traditional heavyweights — Barcelona, Real Madrid and Bayern Munich — are already through, as are former champion Chelsea and two of the nouveaux riches in Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City. Tottenham and Besiktas complete the set of current qualifiers.ADVERTISEMENT Jake says relationship with Shaina ‘goes beyond physical attraction’ OSG plea to revoke ABS-CBN franchise ‘a duplicitous move’ – Lacson MOST READ EXTENDING THE RECORDAfter hammering seven goals past Celtic two weeks ago in Group B, PSG and its impressive offensive armada of Neymar, Kylian Mbappe and Edinson Cavani will also try to improve what is already a tournament record of 24 goals in this season’s group stage.PSG is seeking a sixth straight group win and to rebound from a shock 2-1 loss to promoted Strasbourg in the French league. Curry scores 30, Warriors dominate Heat Coco’s house rules on ‘Probinsyano’ set Diego Simeone’s team, twice a finalist in the last four years, must beat Chelsea away and needs Roma to draw or lose against Azerbaijani team Qarabag at home.Atletico didn’t win any of its first four matches in Group C. Among its setbacks were back-to-back draws against Qarabag.Sevilla is in a much more comfortable position as it can reach the last 16 for the second straight season with a draw at Maribor on Wednesday. Sevilla can win Group E with a win if Liverpool fails to defeat Spartak Moscow at home.___ENGLISH SWEEP?ADVERTISEMENT Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. View commentslast_img read more

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Don’t blame Lionel Messi, he’s ‘limited’ by the team – Argentina manager

first_imgArgentina face Nigeria in their last group game but know even a victory may not be enough to see them through. 2 A dejected Messi had little impact during Argentina’s loss 2 Sampaoli looks on in disbelief as his side fall to a 3-0 defeat Once again Messi, who had a penalty saved in the draw with Iceland last weekend, was largely anonymous in a tournament where his great rival Cristiano Ronaldo is leading the way to be top scorer.Sampaoli was asked about comparisons between the two in his post-match press conference and conceded that Messi’s performances are being hindered by those around him.“I think that because of the reality of the Argentine squad, it sort of clouds Leo’s brilliance,” he said.“Leo is limited because the team doesn’t gel ideally with him as it should. As coaches we need to realise these things and try to deal with them. I’m the one that needs to accept it.“The key to our defeat relates to my responsibility because I’m the coach,” he stressed. Jorge Sampaoli has admitted Lionel Messi is “limited” by the current Argentina team, with the two-time World Cup winners facing possible early elimination after a 3-0 loss to Croatia.The 1978 and 1986 champions could fail to make it out of their group in Russia having picked up just one point from their opening two games.last_img read more

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