The First Leg Of Champions League Quarter Final Just Finished And There Is A Lot To Talk About!
Let's take a closer look at what happened in 2018/19 Champions League Quarter Final First Leg. Ronaldo's celebration was not appreciated by Ajax fans. Messi ended up bruised and bleeding. Lloris caught a penalty kick. Mane was denied a regular goal. Read and watch highlights of what happened in Champions League.
Liverpool Demolished Porto At Anfield
On Tuesday, April 9th all Liverpool FC fans celebrated the home win in Anfield over a fierce opponent and clear underdog Porto. Liverpool dominated the game from the first moments of the match. Summer signing Naby Keita scored his 2nd Liverpool goal early in the game. Naby needed only 5 minutes before his blocked shot ended up in Iker Casillas' net. Liverpool's constant pressure early in the game led to another goal in 26th minute, this time Bobby Firminho was the culprit. Liverpool was the dominant team until the end of the match with 65% ball possession, 299 more passes than Porton and one questionable offside goal decision that involved Sadio Mane.
Porto will have another chance to show football fans that it deserves its place in the Champions League Quarter Final. Porto will face Liverpool next week, Wednesday, April 17th at Estádio do Dragão Stadium. Porto, one of the Champions League underdogs, has won all it's Champions League home games this season and surprised more than one visiting team with its resilience on the home turf. Will Liverpool be the first Champions League team that will bring Porto to its knees at its own powerhouse this season?
Watch Liverpool 2 - 0 Porto Highlights
Tottenham's Hugo Lloris Penalty Save Wins The Game Over Manchester City
Not too many Coys fans were expecting to see Tottenham trumping unstoppable Manchester City in the Champions League Quarter Final First Leg. With only one win, 3 losses, and one draw in the last five games Tottenham's form was not the best of late. Tottenham got in trouble early in the game. It took only 11 minutes before Dany Rose's handball led to a Manchester City penalty kick. I am sure you are familiar with the old football saying "Penalty cannot be saved by the goalie, it can only be poorly executed by the penalty kicker" and dear reader this was exactly the case in Tottenham v Manchester City game. Sergio Aguero's sloppy penalty kick was stooped by Hugo Lloris.
Tottenham's subsequent motivational boost and organized defense proved to be very frustrating for Manchester City. On the other hand, Mauricio Pochettino's side concentrated its effort to expose arguably the weakest link in Manchester City's team, Left Back - Fabian Delph. Don't get me wrong Fabian Delph is a formidable defender! So formidable that his tackle on Harry Kane left poor Kane with an ankle injury. It took Tottenham's Son 78 minutes and amazing trickery and ball control before he scored the one and only goal of the game. Yes, he outplayed Fabian Delph! Watch the game highlights below.
Watch Tottenham 1 - 0 Manchester City Highlights
Manchester United Luke Shaw's OG Gives Barcelona Advantage For The Second-Leg
Man United's Ole Gunnar Solskjær effect seemed to fade away against Barcelona in their First Leg of Champions League Quarter Final. On Wednesday, April 10, we witnessed a flashback to what Manchester United looked like under Jose Mourinho - uninspiring, disorganized, reckless and losing. No team wants to play Barcelona on any given day, but most top clubs put up a fight! Manchester United had ZERO shots on target, only 33% ball possession and 400+ fewer passes than Barcelona. There is no surprise that Barcelona ended up winning the game. What is surprising, however, is the fact that Barcelona was not more clinical and won only thanks to Luke Shaw's own goal.
— Radovan Fafilek (@RadovanFafilek) April 10, 2019
It was very obvious that Manchester United players are getting progressively more frustrated because they were denied any real chances to change the game. Barcelona's dominating performance came at a cost. Chris Smalling left Barcelona captain Lionel Messi bruised and bleeding after an overzealous tackle. English Premier League is known to be a more physical league than La Liga, however, what Smalling did to Messi was too much even for English standards. Since Messi, Suarez, and Coutinho were denied any goals against Manchester United in the First Leg of Champions League Quarter Final it's safe to assume that fans can expect to see their appetite for goals satisfied in the rematch.
Watch Manchester United 0 - 1 Barcelona Highlights
Ajax Dominates over Juventus
Earlier in the season not too many people would bet their money on Ajax Amsterdam winning Champions League Title. The whole football world was mesmerized after Ajax defeated Real Madrid earlier in the competition. Now one of the biggest underdogs of 2018/2019 Champions League season makes life difficult for another title contenders from recent years. Juventus Champions League hopes went up after a surprise summer signing of Real Madrid's hotshot Ronaldo.
Both teams were inches away from scoring in the first half. Ronaldo, who is always craving a perfect goal opened the scoreboard just before the end of the first half with a beautiful header. Ronaldo's instinct for fame and his desire to be in the spotlight has divided fans for years. Similarly to other professional athletes, Ronaldo loves to celebrate after scoring a goal, however, this time he was almost hit by a flying object that was thrown at him by an Ajax supporter. This type of violent behavior by Ajax fans is nothing new. It's time for UEFA's disciplinary commission to take further actions.
The second half of the game barely started when David Neres took a ball from João Cancelo and scored an absolute screamer! Young Ajax lineup was putting Juventus experienced players under pressure until the end of the match but without any effect. The First Leg of Champions League Quarter Final ended up a draw.
Watch Ajax 1 - 1 Juventus Highlights
All four First Leg games showed a lot of excitement and lots of goal opportunities. Nothing is settled yet and any team can still qualify for Champions League Semi-Final. That being said we have one more week to speculate about who will qualify and for whom this Champions League season is over. Join our Sports Talk Line community and share with us and other sports fans your opinions!