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Football Reporting


Ronaldo hits 750, beats Messi’s 70; Giroud oldest since Puskas

Oh, what fun the Champions League can be when it is in the mood.

In Group A, Bayern Munich (already comfortably through) drew Atletico Madrid 1-1. Shakhtar Donetsk blew Group B wide open by doing the double over Real Madrid, beating them 2-0. They are both on seven points now. Group leaders Borussia Monchengladbach are still on eight after being beaten by Internazionale 2-3. In Group C, Manchester City drew 0-0 at FC Porto (both are through). In Group D, Liverpool are through on top after beating Ajax 1-0 at home. The Dutch champions are in third, a point behind Atalanta.

In Group E, Chelsea smashed Sevilla 4-0 (both are through). Group F has Dortmund on 10 and Lazio on nine after they drew 1-1. In Group G, Barcelona and Juventus both won their games and are already comfortably through. Oh, and Cristiano Ronaldo has gone and broken some records. Group H is tightly poised after PSG beat Manchester United 3-1 and RB Leipzig beat Istanbul Basaksehir 4-3 to leave PSG, United and Leipzig all on nine points each. These are all the permutations and combinations for qualification.

Here are the best stats from Matchday 5:


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A bit of a wholesome one to start with. Juventus‘s Federico Chiesa has scored his first goal in the UEFA Champions League, 20 years and 256 days after his father Enrico Chiesa scored his final goal in the competition (for Fiorentina vs Bordeaux in March 2000).


RB Leipzig are just the second German club to win an away CL game after allowing 3+ goals. The other was Schalke vs. Real Madrid in the 2014-15 Round of 16, 2nd leg (4-3).


Istanbul Basaksehir’s Irfan Can Kahveci is only the third player in CL history to score a hattrick but still lose the match, after Ronaldo (El Fenomeno) for Real Madrid vs. Manchester United in April 2003 and Gareth Bale for Tottenham vs. Inter Milan in October 2010.

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Kahveci is also the first player to score three goals from outside the box in a CL game since September 2004, when Wayne Rooney had one of the all-time great club debuts for Manchester United vs. Fenerbahce.


Marcus Rashford is the second player to score in three consecutive CL appearances against PSG. The first? Neymar (four in a row).


The away side has won all four CL matches between Manchester United and Paris Saint-Germain; excluding games played at neutral venues, it’s the first fixture in the competition’s history to see the first four meetings all won by the away side.


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More United woe. They have now lost four of their eight home games in all competitions this season. That’s more than the three they lost in 28 matches at Old Trafford last season.


Chelsea have won four consecutive CL matches for the first time since the 2011-12 campaign, when they went on to win the competition.


More goodness fo(u)r (sorry) the London side — Olivier Giroud is the first Chelsea player to score four goals in a game since Frank Lampard in March 2010 vs. Aston Villa. But he is the first to net four for Chelsea in a European Cup/Champions League game.


This is astonishing. Real Madrid have lost more CL group-stage games since Cristiano Ronaldo left the club in 2018 (five) than they did during his nine years at the club (three).

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More woe for Real Madrid. Shakhtar are just the fifth team to win two group-stage games vs. Real Madrid in the same CL season after Ajax (1995-96), Bayern Munich (1999-2000), Juventus (2008-09) and CSKA Moscow (2018-19).


The CL golden boot is now a three-way race between Álvaro Morata, Erling Haaland and Rashford, all of whom have scored six goals.


Istanbul Basaksehir are the sixth team in CL history to lose a home match in which they have scored 3+ goals. The last such match was Valencia 3-4 Atalanta on March 10, 2020.

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Romelu Lukaku has scored 12 goals in European competitions over the last two season: only Robert Lewandowski (18) and Haaland (16) have netted more in this period between the Europa League and Champions League.


Porto have advanced to the UEFA Champions League knockout stage for the 15th time, the most by a Portuguese club.

34 years, 63 days

Giroud is the oldest player in the CL era to score a hattrick, while he is the oldest to do it in the European Cup since Real Madrid’s Ferenc Puskas in September 1965 (38y, 173d vs Feyenoord).

Messi-Ronaldo watch

Lionel Messi didn’t play, but Cristiano Ronaldo did, and he tapped in a landmark goal.

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Ronaldo has now scored more CL home goals (71) than any other player in the tournament’s history, overtaking Messi (70). To put this in context, the men tied for third place in the CL all-time highest goalscoring charts (Lewandowski and Raul) have scored a TOTAL of 71 CL goals.


Ronaldo has now scored 750 goals in his senior professional career (club and country). Take your time. Read that again. Try to process it. Here’s a quick breakdown of all those goals:

Real Madrid – 450

Manchester United – 118

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Portugal – 102

Juventus – 75 (reminder, he joined them in 2018)

Sporting CP – 5

13 years, 25 days

Ronaldo’s goal on Wednesday night is his first CL goal against Dynamo Kiev since November 2007, 13 years and 25 days ago. It is the biggest gap between goals by a player against an opponent in CL history.

(Stats courtesy ESPN’s Stats & Information Group)

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