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Kylian Mbappe (Philippe Signe/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images) big win. Ridiculous goal. Management fired. The Champions League is really back.
Matchday 1 offered a ton of #narrative, some of which could prove to be season-defining for the clubs involved.
If you are a drama fan, keep reading…
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Erling Haaland has now scored 4,798 goals for Manchester City with just 86 touches. At least that’s how it feels. The fearsome striker scored twice in his new club’s 4-0 win over Sevilla, giving him an incredible 12 goals in seven games in all competitions this season.
What we see here is maximum efficiency. As highlighted by OptaJoe, Haaland can only touch the ball a limited number of times per game, but he has been defending. His movement and speed make it impossible for the centre-backs to face the challenges they would normally take forward.
Phil Foden’s goal against Sevilla is a case in point. Haaland’s thrust took away two defenders, both of whom decided not to put additional pressure on Foden. The Englishman turned a fine shot into the corner of the net. Granted, a good striker needs to affect the game without the ball, but now Haaland’s presence alone is enough to stop the development of a quality team.
Time to invent a new number to keep up with those goalscoring records.
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Harry Langer/DeFodi Images via Getty Images
Like Haaland, there are times when you just wonder if Kylian Mbappe can
While Paris Saint-Germain did their best to get Juve back into the game, Mbappe’s second goal summed up a look Up and attacking as sharp as any game on the continent right now. One-touch pass, first completed, extremely difficult to stop.
Two more deadly goals for the Frenchman, who, after signing a historic new contract in May, He will be desperate to eventually lead the Ligue 1 side to their first Champions League trophy.
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On Wednesday morning, Chelsea shocked the Football Cup and Club World Cup winners by announcing the departure of the Champions League and the Chinese Super League. Manager Thomas Tuchel.
This comes after the Blues spent more than everyone else in a transfer window that wasn’t even there yet. Locked up for a week. Just days after Tuchel found the striker he wanted in Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, the player is delighted to be working with his former Dortmund colleague again.
The reunion lasted 59 minutes. Auba barely got knocked out in Chelsea’s 1-0 loss to Dinamo Zagreb on Tuesday night. The Blues stung the woodwork multiple times and were kept at bay by the brilliant Dominic Livakovic, but it’s hard to say they were out of luck.
Defensive holes and inability to score were in many ways a hallmark of Tuchel’s late reign.
Controversial victory weekend for West Ham, confirmed by a questionable VAR decision, cannot win for Tuchel Enough time to convince his players again. He had plenty to deal with in his final months at Stamford Bridge, from club sanctions that caused unrest among players and fans to trying to reshape the squad under new boss Todd Boehly. It all turned out to be too much.
Whether it’s Graham Potter, Zidane, Zidane, Mauricio Pochettino or whatever else replaces him Man, Chelsea’s goal now has to go back to basics: to get the strikers to fire and not let the opponent go past the defence.
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Mykhaylo Mudryk (Cathrin Mueller/Getty Images)
Tuchel isn’t the only one getting this week’s action after power on. RB Leipzig has sacked Domenico Tedesco after Shakhtar Donetsk’s stunning 4-1 win over the Bundesliga side at the Red Bull Arena.
Ukrainian Premier League only resumed in August following the Russian invasion in February. Miners lost important players during that time, as highlighted by the arrival of David Neres in January and his departure in June.
They played well against Leipzig. New signing Marian Shved made a grim finish as he stunned fans with a brace in Germany. Mykhaylo Mudryk also stepped up, scoring one goal and assisting two, adding to the reputation he has seen linked to huge Premier League transfers.
Miners have put themselves in a good position to advance from Group F. While the game against Real Madrid is unlikely to yield points, they are looking to secure six points from Celtic, who languished in a 3-0 loss to Los Blancos. They will also be confident of beating Leipzig again.
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Virgil van Dijk (Matteo Ciambelli/DeFodi Images via Getty Images)
A long trip Naples is not what you want when you are struggling. Liverpool have stumbled in the Premier League, winning just two of six games, a far cry from the side that challenged the quadruple last year.
Jürgen Klopp’s men couldn’t handle Napoli. The 4-1 loss underscored the problems that continue to crop up this season: poor defence, bluntness in front of goal and the inability to get Mohamed Salah into the game.
Perhaps most tellingly, the fear factor is starting to disappear. Napoli played Liverpool and really should have won by a bigger margin after missing a penalty and a couple of good chances.
Recently signed Khivcha Kvaratskhelia, which many may not have known until Wednesday night, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Joe Gomez plays in slow motion. Victor Osimhen is sharper than Gomez and Virgil van Dijk, forcing the centre-back to make mistakes. Liverpool were never contained and the entire defensive unit lacked intensity or the will to fight. Alexander-Arnold’s lack of effort on the defensive end could really have resulted in him being substituted at half-time. Easily beaten by Kvaratskhelia on the flank, the English full-back gave up. No sprint back to help his teammates. He slowed down, as the net bulged again.
Of course, Liverpool are dealing with ongoing injury problems, Thiago Alcantara, Joel Matip, Diogo Jota missed time. The midfield was forced to rely too much on James Milner, 36. But fans expected better. It’s one thing to lose a game, but it’s another to be destroyed because of a zero fight.
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Robert Lewandowski and Ousmane Dembélé (ADRIA PUIG/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
The prolific striker scored eight goals in five appearances for the Blaugrana, unsurprisingly starring 5 -1 for defeating Viktoria Plzen’s match. He has now scored hat-tricks for three different clubs in the competition. Who would have thought of anything else?
Ousmane Dembele doesn’t want to be outdone, though. The French winger has been plagued by injuries throughout his career at the Camp Nou and has been outstanding against the Czech visitors. His forthrightness and willingness to work hard have propelled Barca forward and created opportunities that would not have opened up in other circumstances.
Dembele’s excellent performance was summed up as Lewandowski added two assists, but especially the first time. When he didn’t have the right to do so, he won a sliding tackle and hit a pinpoint cross for the striker who wouldn’t shoot from close range. Barca’s upcoming future on the pitch does look very exciting.
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Antoine Griezmann (Berengui/DeFodi Images via Getty Images)
A word by Antoine G. Summary by Antoine Griezmann.
Rumour has it that the French striker will only be able to play limited minutes on loan from Barcelona due to the terms of his contract Will force Atletico to pay £35m to La Liga rivals. He has not played more than 29 minutes of normal time in any game this season.
However, he did have three goals, including a 2-1 win over Porto, the 101st minute winner was This week’s game came to a successful conclusion.
This game certainly saved its dramatic final moments. Porto’s Mehndi Taremi was sent off in the 82nd minute and Mario Hermoso gave Atletico the lead in the first minute of injury time. Porto fought back for the 96th, before Griezmann sent his fans and sprint manager Diego Simeone wild.
“The Griezmann era” fits into one of the most interesting and memorable stories in football. This ongoing super-narrative is gaining momentum, making him one of Atletico’s most influential weapons, regardless of time constraints.