Energized by a change of supervisor and one other opportunistic end by Cristiano Ronaldo, Manchester United certified for the knockout stage of the Champions League with a recreation to spare on Tuesday.
Another newly appointed coach sill has work to do, although, to get Barcelona into the final 16.
United was led for the primary time by Michael Carrick following the weekend firing of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and, similar to his predecessor, the interim supervisor was left to be pleased about a objective by the Champions League’s report scorer.
Ronaldo produced a elegant lobbed end to place United forward towards Villarreal and a Ninetieth-minute strike by Jadon Sancho — his first objective since becoming a member of for $100 million within the offseason — sealed a 2-0 win to safe progress because the winner of Group F. Ronaldo has scored in all 5 group video games to date, and now has a record-extending 140 Champions League targets in his profession.
Another English group, defending champion Chelsea, additionally superior on the again of a 4-0 win over already-qualified Juventus, which slumped to its heaviest ever loss within the Champions League. With Liverpool additionally certified and Manchester City prone to be a part of them, the Premier League will once more be properly represented within the knockout stage.
Barcelona, now coached by former star midfielder Xavi Hernandez, has superior from its group each season for nearly twenty years however a 0-0 draw at house to Benfica means the Spanish membership may have to beat Bayern Munich within the last spherical of video games to advance.
All 4 groups in Group G are separated by three factors and will nonetheless qualify heading into their final video games after wins for Lille and Sevilla over Salzburg and Wolfsburg, respectively.
RONALDO DELIVERS AGAIN
Ronaldo had already scored two winners and a late equalizer within the Champions League this season earlier than his well taken go-ahead objective towards Villarreal within the 78th minute, prompted by Fred successful the ball excessive up the sphere.
And each Fred and Ronaldo featured in a counterattack that ended with Sancho smashing a shot in off the underside of the crossbar to seal the win.
Carrick made a giant name in his first recreation in cost by dropping playmaker Bruno Fernandes in a bid to arrange in a extra stable vogue and defend a protection that has been overrun this season. It led to a primary clear sheet of the group stage.
More pleasure was to observe as Atalanta’s wild 3-3 draw at Young Boys meant United can’t be displaced as group chief courtesy of its superior head-to-head report towards Villarreal, which is three factors again in second place.
Atalanta, which is some extent additional again, grabbed some extent because of Luis Muriel’s 87th-minute free kick along with his first contact after approaching in its place.
BITTERSWEET FOR CHELSEA
It was a bittersweet night time for Chelsea supervisor Thomas Tuchel.
The thrashing of Juventus, achieved courtesy of targets by academy graduates Trevoh Chalobah, Reece James and Callum Hudson-Odoi in addition to a fourth by substitute Timo Werner, was marred by knee accidents to key gamers N’Golo Kante and Ben Chilwell.
Kante went off within the first half whereas Chilwell appeared in agony as he was helped off the sphere within the 71st.
Chelsea and Juventus, who’re tied on 12 factors with a recreation left to play, each began an American in Christian Pulisic and Weston McKennie, respectively. They had been two of six Americans to begin Tuesday, a report in a single night time of group play.
Zenit St. Petersburg is assured of ending third and going into the Europa League knockout stage after drawing 1-1 at Malmo, which can finish the group stage in final place however not less than has a objective to indicate for its efforts.
Barcelona missed a string of possibilities on the Camp Nou and stayed two factors forward of Benfica.
If Barca fails to beat Bayern away, Benfica may overtake the Spanish membership with a win at house to already-eliminated Dynamo Kyiv. If they end tied on factors, Benfica would advance courtesy of their head-to-head report.
Helping Barca is the truth that Bayern has little to play for — besides, perhaps, the prospect to knock out a historic rival, albeit one which has misplaced its aura following the departure of Lionel Messi and different big-name gamers amid monetary issues.
Bayern had already certified for the final 16 earlier than its 2-1 win at Dynamo Kyiv and the end result secured the German champions first place within the group.
Robert Lewandowski — with an overhead kick — and Kingsley Coman scored the targets for a threadbare Bayern squad lacking 9 gamers, with seven unavailable as a result of both they examined constructive for the coronavirus or had been unvaccinated and had contact with a constructive case.
Lille moved prime of its group after Canada striker Jonathan David scored his twelfth objective of the season to seal a 1-0 win over Salzburg, which dropped some extent again in second.
Sevilla jumped into third place, above Wolfsburg, with a 2-0 victory over the German group because of targets by Joan Jordán and Rafa Mir.
In the ultimate video games, Wolfsburg hosts Lille and Salzburg is at house to Sevilla.