An epic night of Champions League football has thrown up some compelling results. Cristiano Ronaldo rocked up to the Camp Nou, scored two penalties, and led Juventus to the group winners’ spot over Lionel Messi‘s Barcelona. Manchester United rocked up to the Red Bull Arena, got absolutely shellacked by RB Leipzig, almost pulled off a ridiculous comeback, and got knocked out and down into the Europa League. Lazio joined Borussia Dortmund in the round of 16 after surviving a late onslaught from Club Brugge. Oh, and PSG vs. Istanbul Basaksehir was abandoned due to alleged racism.
Here are the best stats from the night:
Juventus are the first Italian side ever to score 3+ away goals against Barcelona in a UEFA competition.
Borussia Dortmund’s Yousouffa Moukoko is the youngest player to ever appear in the CL, aged 16 years and 18 days. Moukoko beat Celestine Babayaro’s old record by 67 days.
Barcelona have conceded two goals in the first 20 minutes of a CL home game for the first time ever.
Lazio have reached the CL knockout stage for the second time, after 1999-2000. The common link between the two campaigns? Simone Inzaghi — player then, coach now.
Manchester United have conceded 3+ goals in consecutive Champions League games for the first time since April 2003 (Both vs Real Madrid — does anyone remember that brilliant Ronaldo hattrick in the second of those games?).
Kepa Arrizabalaga has conceded seven goals in his four appearances for Chelsea this season in all competitions, as many as Édouard Mendy and Willy Caballero have shipped in their 15 games combined in 2020-21.
Chelsea have won 10 penalties in all competitions this season, more than any other Premier League side, scoring eight of them (level with Leicester).
Since his Manchester United debut in February, no player in Europe’s top five leagues has scored more penalties in all competitions than Bruno Fernandes (13 – level with a certain Ronaldo).
Barcelona’s CL record 13-season streak of first-place group-stage finishes has been snapped. The last time Barcelona failed to win its CL Group was in 2006-07, when they were eventually eliminated by Liverpool in the round of 16. Chelsea had finished first in Barcelona’s group that season.
Juventus, meanwhile, have now won a CL group 14 times, the most by an Italian club. They have finished first in their group in each of the last three CL seasons
Gianluigi Buffon, 42, has now played a CL match in a 17th different season. Only three players have played in more (20 – Iker Casillas, 19 – Ryan Giggs, 18 – Ronaldo). And he celebrated with a clean sheet.
In their 3-2 loss to RB Leipzig, Manchester United had 19 shots on Leipzig’s goal, compared to nine by their opponents. United also had nine of them hit the target, while Leipzig hit the target four times.
Barcelona have had two superb records snapped after that stunning 3-0 result. The first is a record 33-game home unbeaten streak in the CL group stages (last loss, October 2009 vs Rubin Kazan!) and a 38-game home unbeaten streak in the CL across stages (last loss May 2013 vs Bayern Munich).
Now for the headline act. Messi vs Ronaldo. Ronaldo vs Messi. The two GOAT candidates faced off for the 36th time (club and country), and here’s how the head-to-head stacks up now — Messi’s team has won 16, Ronaldo’s 11. Messi has scored 22 (none added on the night), while Ronaldo now has 21 (two scored on the night).
Ronaldo is the first player in CL history to score two penalties in a single game vs Barcelona.
11 vs 8
Messi had 11 shots on goal on the night, which is three more than the entire Juventus team. In terms of shots on target, Juventus had four (Ronaldo had three of those, and the other goalscorer Weston McKennie had the fourth). Messi had an incredible seven.
We say incredible because Messi’s 7-shot, 0-goal display makes it the most shots-on-target any player has had in a CL game without scoring (since at least 2003-04). Messi’s 7 shots are, in fact, tied for his most in a CL game over the last 11 seasons (he scored 2+ goals in the other such games).
Ronaldo has now converted 13 consecutive penalties, a CL record. This is not altogether surprising considering Messi is the only other person to have even scored at least 13 penalties. (Messi has scored 15 in total, Ronaldo has 19).
This is some achievement. The Camp Nou is now the stadium where Cristiano Ronaldo has scored the most away goals in his club career (14).
Ronaldo has scored 20 goals vs Barcelona (34 appearances), tied for his fourth-most against any opponent (with Celta Vigo). The three clubs he has scored more against are Sevilla (27), Atletico Madrid (25), and Getafe (23).
Including internationals, Ronaldo has now scored 40 goals in 2020.
84 vs 62
Do numbers also speak a thousand words? The number of CL goals scored since Sir Alex Ferguson retired – Ronaldo 84, Manchester United 62.
Another stat that underlines just how hard Messi tried on the night. Messi had 125 touches in the whole game, the most by any player in the game. And 77 more than Ronaldo.
Ronaldo extends his lead atop the CL scoring charts to 132. That is more CL goals than AS Roma. Messi is on second, obviously, with 118.
Ronaldo’s career club goals tally now stands at 650. Six hundred and fifty.
(Stats courtesy ESPN’s Stats & Information Group)