UEFA Champions League day 1:
A festival goals highlighted the first night of Champions League football with some of the best clubs were in action.
Barcelona took its revenge from last year when Juventus had eliminated them at the quarterfinal stage. Messi has been on fire since Neymar departure with already 7 goals in just 4 games, including a hat-tick and a brace vs Juve.
Coach Valverde reacts:
“There’s a lot still to do but it was an important win. It’s essential to win games to get the fans on our side … Juventus defend very well and keep their lines tight so we needed to be patient. Whenever Messi gets the ball you get the feeling that he’s going to do something for us. The goal just before the break was crucial”.
PSG and MCN impress Europe. The new sensational combination of forwards stroke again. After scoring 5 goals in Ligue 1 to Metz, PG did it again away and in each game the “MCN” Mbppé, Cavani, Neymar scored.
“We’re really happy with the performance and the result. It’s a good win and very important for the rest of the competition and the season. There is a good understanding between us in attack, but it’s easier to play with great players, it’s always fun. It makes everyone’s work easier.”
“I think we played really well, stayed focussed for 90 minutes and not only up front. The whole team played well. We’re really happy to have taken the three points. We going to keep working to improve still more.”
Chelsea cruised into its first game at home.
Coach Conte was satsified:
“It was a good start, a perfect start for us,’ Conte beamed. ‘To play the first game in the Champions League, to win with a good result, to score many goals and finish the game with a clean sheet – I saw a lot of positive things tonight. Now we have to continue, to rest tomorrow, and then start to think about the next game, a tough game against Arsenal.
For the first game in the Champions League I decided to start with rotation. Also because we have to start the process to improve our players. If we think we can play with 13 players like last season, we are crazy. Instead, we have to improve our players and try to create a good competition between them. A positive competition is very important.”
For its return in the Champions League, Manchester United played good enough to beat Basel 3-0. Lukaku has scored six goals as many matches with his new club. Coach Mourinho reacts:
When you start the group phase, it’s always important to win. I think we played very stable, with confidence, with patience, with good choices and I would say we played quite well. After it became 2-0, I think everything changed, we stopped making the right decisions on the pitch and could have put ourselves in trouble but Basel didn’t score and then the third goal came.
The players probably felt the game was under control at 2-0 but football is football and you have to respect the opponent. I don’t know if the goal difference is going to play a part, the three points is the most important thing. Overall, the performance was solid and the three points are very important for us.”