Champions League continues, provides excitement to soccer world

By Anna Goorevich || Contributing Writer

Photo courtesy of Real Madrid CF

This past week brought another frenzy of European soccer drama as star-studded teams from all over Europe participated in the second week of group stage competition.

From Tuesday’s games, some notable results are Real Madrid beating Borussia Dortmund 3-1 after a pair of Cristiano Ronaldo goals. Additionally, Turkish club Besiktas defeated the German RB Leipzig 2-0.

An important result to come out of Tuesday’s games was Tottenham Hotspur’s thrashing of Cyprus’ APOEL FC 3-0, led by a hat-trick of goals from Tottenham starlet Harry Kane, therefore leading into arguments over whether or not Kane can be considered a “world class” player that matches the ranks of players such as Ronaldo or Messi.

Manchester City also notched an impressive 2-0 win against Ukrainian club FC Shakhtar Donetsk after goals from Kevin De Bruyne and Raheem Sterling.

Furthermore, Wednesday’s results further reflect a pattern of English success so far in the Champions League. Manchester United dominated against CSKA Moscow 4-1 after a double by in-form striker Romelu Lukaku.

More importantly, last season’s Premier League winners Chelsea FC earned a crucial 2-1 win against strong Spanish side Atletico Madrid on Wednesday after a stoppage time winner scored by substitute Michy Batshuayi.

The only English club this week not to win was Liverpool FC after being held to a 1-1 draw by FC Spartak Moscow.

In recent years, the Champions League sphere has been dominated by Spanish clubs such as Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid, and Barcelona FC. Although it is still too early to tell, the recent success of English clubs may signify a “changing of the guard” where Premier League teams are able to compete with the higher level clubs in Europe and possibly challenge them for the Champions League title, which has not been the case in the past five years.

The last time an English club reached the Champions League final was in 2012 when Chelsea FC beat Bayern Munich FC. Since then, English clubs have struggled to have success. The impressive wins so far by Chelsea FC, Manchester United, Tottenham Hotspur and other clubs suggests that English clubs will refuse to be counted out of the European action this season.

In Wednesday’s highly anticipated matchup of two soccer superpowers, Paris Saint Germain (PSG) and Bayern Munich FC, the Neymar-led PSG side defeated Bayern 3-0. In wake of their embarrassment over such a deafening defeat, the Bayern management fired coach Carlo Ancelotti on Thursday, hoping to inspire their team to live up to their lofty expectations.

Champions League competition continues on October 17th and 18th, with some notable matchups being Real Madrid vs. Tottenham Hotspur, Juventus vs. Sporting CP, and many more.

First-year Anna Goorevich is a contributing writer. Her email is agoorevi@fandm.edu.

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