Mixed results for English teams in Europe
The European tournaments reached the quarter final stages. Five out of the 16 teams left in Europe, are English teams. Liverpool, Chelsea and Manchester City represent England in the Champions League, while Arsenal and Manchester United are still in the Europa League. All teams played their first quarter final match of this season, and the results are very mixed. In this article we briefly discuss the results of each team.
Manchester City and Champions League quarter finals haven’t been a good combination in the recent history. The Cityzens have been eliminated in this stage of the tournament for the last three years in a row. There seems to be a mental block when they reach the quarter finals. This week they played at home versus Borussia Dortmund, trying to get a good result on which they van built in the second leg of this tie. An early goal by Kevin de Bruyne was the start they wished for. But when Dortmund tied the game in the 84th minute, all their efforts looked be diminished. It was young talented Phil Foden who scored the winning goal in injury time, giving Man City a 2-1 lead in the tie. A very interesting score which will leave all options open in this tie.
On the same night as Man City, Liverpool played away in Spain against Real Madrid. They played at Real’s youth facility because the Bernabeu is being rebuilt. Real Madrid took a 2-0 lead in the first half. Early in the second half Mo Salah scored the 2-1 and brought his team back in the tie. Liverpool had the momentum but int was Junior Vinicius who scored the last goal of this match. Liverpool now has a 3-1 deficit to overcome in the home match on Wednesday. It’s not impossible, but it’s definitely Real Madrid with the advantage in this tie.
On Wednesday night Chelsea played away against Porto. The Blues looked to have the best draw out of the English teams and this match proved it. Goals from Mason Mount and Ben Chilwell gave Chelsea a 0-2 victory in Portugal. A really good score for Tuchel’s team. They are the clear favourites to win this tie and continue to the semi-finals. Thanks to this result there is a decent chance that we will see at least one English team in the semi-finals and maybe even more.
Thursday nights are Europa League nights. All four quarter finals were played at the same time. Manchester United played a difficult away match against Granada in Spain. Despite the tough opposition the Mancunians took a 0-1 lead by Marcus Rashford after a half an hour. The Red Devils played way too slow and sloppy to destroy Granada. A last-minute netted penalty by Bruno Fernandes put Man United 0-2 up. A score which should kill the tie in the advantage of Manchester United.
The Gunners played at home against Slavia Praha. A team that already eliminated Leicester City and Rangers in this tournament, therefore shouldn’t be underestimated. Arsenal was the better team in the first half, but they forgot to score a few goals. The longer the match lasted, the more unlikely it became that Arsenal would win the first leg in this tie. Nicolas Pepe, who came on the pitch in the second half, scored the 1-0 late in the game. A score that would have given Arsenal a good chance to progress to the semifinals. Sloppy defending in injury time gave Slavia Praha the ultimate opportunity to tie this leg, and so they did. A goal that completely changed the feeling in this tie. Arsenal would really need to go all guns blazing in Czech Republic in order to get through to the next round.