UCL soccer: Barcelona exits as PSG, Liverpool reaches next round

UCL soccer: Barcelona exits as PSG, Liverpool reaches next round

The second to the last UCL soccer group games concluded this week, with most of the teams already determined their place in the competition, while only few teams still await for their final place. Here’s the roundup of action from this week’s Champions League fixtures. 

Liverpool advanced in the knockouts

Liverpool booked their place in the knockout rounds after beating Ajax 0-3 in Amsterdam. Mohamed Salah, Darwin Nunez and Harvey Elliott scored one goal each to help the Reds ensure a top-two finish in Group A. Next week, Jurgen Klopp’s men will face leaders Napoli at Anfield and a huge win in this match will make them group winners. Continue reading for today’s soccer prediction. 

Leaders Napoli beat Rangers 3-0 to keep a perfect record in the competition, winning all 5 of 5 games with 1 match to spare. Rangers suffered a fifth consecutive Champions League defeat but they still have a chance to qualify to Europa League if they win big against Ajax, who conceded at least three goals in three consecutive Champions League matches for the first time in the club’s history.

Barcelona dropped to Europa League

Barcelona once again ended their Champions League campaign early, with 3-0 home defeat by Bayern Munich, ensuring them third place finish with a game to spare. The loss also means they will be dropped to the Europa League for the second time in a row. Goals from Sadio Mane, Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting and Benjamin Pavard were enough to hold Barca from advancing in the next stage of the competition. 

In the same group, Inter Milan beat Viktoria Plzen 4-0. Henrikh Mkhitaryan scored the opening goal for Inter before Edin Dzeko made it 2-0 in the 45th minute. In the second half, Dzeko netted another goal and Romelu Lukaku sealed the win for the Serie A giants, ending Barcelona’s hopes in the competition. Bayern is expected to top Group C ahead of their final game against Inter.

Mbappe, Messi scored to top Group H

Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappé both scored twice against Maccabi Haifa as the French club look to win the group after sealing their place in the next round. Messi opened the scoring in the 19th minute before Mbappe added another in the 32nd minute. Neymar added their third three minutes later before Messi and Mbappe scored their second respectively. 

Maccabi’s Sean Goldberg netted an own goal in the 67th minute and Carlos Soler scored the winner for the French outfit. Abdoulaye Seck scored a brace for the Israeli side as a consolation. With the win, PSG top the Group H table on goal difference as Benfica, who won against Juventus 4-3, level them in points. Both Juventus and Maccabi Haifa still hope for the Europa League spot.

Group D remain tight

Group D remains the only group that have not ensured a place in the next round, with leaders Tottenham shared spoils with Sporting CP 1-1. Spur will need a point next week to advance, while Sporting and Frankfurt, who won against Marseille 2-1 in their most recent game, will battle for the second spot. Sporting only need a draw to advance, while Frankfurt and Marseille are expected to drop to the second tier.

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