We’ve been spoilt with the success English clubs have had in the Champions League over recent years. They’ve dominated in most parts, in particular, the group stage, but this week wasn’t the same.
Chelsea were beaten by Dinamo Zagreb, Liverpool were thumped by Napoli and while Tottenham eventually came out on top 2-0 against Marseille, it wasn’t plain sailing and you have to wonder how they would’ve performed had Marseille not been down to 10 men.
The one shining light was Manchester City, but we wouldn’t expect any less, would we?
Tuchel Sacked on Back of Chelsea Defeat
The biggest headline of the Champions League week came from the Chelsea game on Tuesday night. They were beaten in Zagreb, a very disappointing night, and the result led to the sacking of boss Thomas Tuchel.
It wasn’t too long ago that Tuchel was leading his side to Champions League glory, but tensions between him and the new owner have continued to grow, and their average start hasn’t helped.
Things came to a head on Wednesday morning, when it was announced that Tuchel had been sacked by the club.
Liverpool Suffer Joint-Largest Champions League Defeat
It wasn’t much better for Liverpool, who were beaten 4-1 in Italy when they played Napoli. It was a dreadful night for Jurgen Klopp’s men, who were miles off the pace, and never really in the game at any stage, after going behind early.
This has not been a good start to the new campaign for Liverpool, once seen as ‘guaranteed’ to be in the top two, the way The Redmen are playing right now, it wouldn’t be a massive shock to see them out of the top four at this rate.
Spurs Struggle Until Red Card
A good start to the season for Tottenham, but their return to the Champions League was hardly vintage. They struggled at home to Marseille, failing to keep hold of the ball, and generally being frustrated by the opposition.
The big turning point in the game game in the second half, when Marseille went down to 10 men, and that completely changed the game. It gave Spurs the chance to push Marseille back, and eventually the pressure told, with Richarlison scoring not one header, but two, to give the North London club what looks on paper a comfortable victory, but certainly wasn’t.
City Shine Bright on Opening Night
Let’s end on a positive, with the excellent display from Manchester City. They won 4-0 in Sevilla, and were magnificent, it really could have been a few more. Erling Haaland scored again, he’s been brought in to be the difference maker that takes City over the top in this competition, and based on his start both domestically and in Europe, he looks more than capable of doing that.
While the other three struggled, City showed their quality to come out on top and send a message to the rest of Europe that they are back for more, and this time, might just be able to go all the way.