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Champions League

Rio Ferdinand Changed His Mind, Names Chelsea’s Best Player In Win Over Lille

Timothy Aiyeku

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Premier League legend Rio Ferdinand has named Fikayo Tomori as the best player for Chelsea during their Champions League clash with French Ligue 1 club Lille on Wednesday night.

Fikayo Tomori and Chelsea picked up their first win of this Champions League season with a 2-1 win over Lille on Matchday Two.

Former Leeds United and Manchester United centre back Rio Ferdinand said that Nigerian-born English defender Fikayo Tomori was the best player for Chelsea while he was doing his punditry work on BT Sports.

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Fikayo Tomori has earned rave reviews for his performances for Chelsea this season following his return from a loan spell at English Championship side Derby County last season.

He played under Frank Lampard at Derby County last season as the Rams reached the playoff final before they were beaten by Aston Villa who secured Premier League promotion as a result.

Fikayo Tomori returned to Chelsea from his loan spell at Derby County this summer and started the new campaign on the bench before he was brought into the team for the week five league clash away to Wolverhampton Wanderers.

Fikayo Tomori scored one of the goals of the season as Chelsea beat Wolves 5-2 to secure their second win of the season.

Timothy Aiyeku is a Mass Communication graduate from the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria. He is a sports, everything football analyst.

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Champions League

Liverpool Opponents For Champions League Knockout Stage Revealed

Amuda Segun

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The possible knockout stage opponents for Champions League holders Liverpool have been revealed after the conclusion of the group stage.

Matches over the eight groups have been concluded on Wednesday night in the Champions League and 16 teams have emerged from 32 teams for the next stage (round of 16).

Champions League holders Liverpool are one of the 16 teams in the knockout stage of the competition this season after the Reds finished as the top team in Group E ahead of Napoli, Red Bull Salzburg, and Genk.

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Liverpool sealed their place in the next round with the 2-0 away win over Austrian Bundesliga champions Red Bull Salzburg courtesy the goals Naby Keita and star forward Mohamed Salah in the second half.

The reigning European champions needed just one point to be assured of a last 16 spot before the Red Bull Salzburg game.

Liverpool have the possibility of meeting five teams in the round of 16.

The Reds can meet the likes of immediate past champions Real Madrid, debutants Atalanta, Spanish La Liga side Atletico Madrid, German Bundesliga outfit Borussia Dortmund and French Ligue 1 club Lyon in the last 16 stage of the Champions League.

Liverpool won the Champions League title last season via the 2-0 win over Tottenham Hotspur in their final clash.

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Champions League

Champions League: Chelsea Defender Ruled Out Of Lille Clash

Amuda Segun

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Chelsea will be without key defender Fikayo Tomori for the visit of French Ligue 1 side Lille in the Champions League.

The recently capped England international will miss the Lille game according to his manager Frank Lampard.

His absence for the crucial Champions League clash with Lille in Group H was confirmed by Chelsea manager Frank Lampard during his pre-match press conference on Monday ahead of the game.

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Fikayo Tomori is said to have a slight injury problem and that he will be fit for the Premier League game at home to Bournemouth at the weekend.

The Chelsea defender has been troubled by a hip injury in recent days and that led to his omission from the Blues starting XI for the Everton game in the Premier League at the weekend.

Fikayo Tomori has forged a potent center-back partnership with Kurt Zouma at the heart of the Chelsea defence and he was sorely missed during the Everton game which ended in a 3-1 defeat for his team.

His spot in the starting XI was taken by Danish international Andreas Christensen, and he is expected to continue to surprise him in the Lille game which Chelsea must win to confirm their place in the knockout stage.

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Liverpool Star Ruled Out Of Champions League Clash With Salzburg

Amuda Segun

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Liverpool midfielder Adam Lallana will miss the all-important Champions League trip to Red Bull Salzburg on Tuesday night.

The England international was ruled out by Reds boss Jurgen Klopp who said that he has a thigh injury.

Klopp expects Adam Lallana to return to training on Thursday.

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Adam Lallana has endured an injury-filled last two years at Liverpool and his latest injury wad sustained during the Merseyside Derby clash with Everton at Anfield last week.

He was one of the standout players as Liverpool thrashed their rivals 5-2 in front of their fans in the Premier League duel.

Liverpool have not dominated the Champions League this season as they have done in the Premier League where they are almost invincible.

The Reds have dropped just two points from a possible 48 points in the Premier League this season but they have not been able to maintain the same form in the Champions League as they are struggling to qualify for the knockout stage from Group E.

Liverpool need a point in their Champions League trip to dangerous Red Bull Salzburg to seal their place in the last 16 of the competition they won last season.

Austrian champions Red Bull Salzburg need to win the game.

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Champions League

Champions League: Liverpool Could Be Without These Six Players For Salzburg Clash

Amuda Segun

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Six-time European champions Liverpool could be without six players for their crucial Champions League match with Austrian Bundesliga champions Red Bull Salzburg on Tuesday night.

Red Bull Salzburg play hosts to reigning European champions, Liverpool, in Group E clash hoping to win the Matchday Six game to seal a last 16 spot at the expense of their opponents.

On their part, Liverpool have not displayed their invincible Premier League form in the Champions League this season and that explains why the holders are struggling to qualify from their group.

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Only a draw is enough for Liverpool to secure their spot in the knockout stage.

Players like Joel Matip, Nathaniel Clyne, Adam Lallana, Fabinho, Georginio Wijnaldum, and Dejan Lovren might miss the Red Bull Salzburg game.

Matip has an ongoing knee problem and won’t be back until the end of this month thus ruling him out of the Champions League clash.

Clyne is a long-term injury absentee and he’s not expected in the Liverpool first team until next year as he recuperates from the knee injury sustained during preseason.

Dejan Lovren and Georginio Wijnaldum are doubts about the Red Bull Salzburg game with muscular tightness and slight thigh injury respectively.

Adam Lallana and Fabinho will miss the Red Bull Salzburg game with various injuries.

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Champions League

Why Klopp Is The Best Manager In The World Revealed

Amuda Segun

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Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has been lauded as the best manager in the world at the moment by his next opponents Jesse Marsch.

German tactician Klopp and Austrian-American Marsch will meet in the Champions League later this week and the latter has praised his counterpart.

The two managers will meet for the Champions League decider between Liverpool and Austrian Bundesliga champions Red Bull Salzburg.

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The two teams will meet on Tuesday night in the Group E clash in the Champions League with both sides still within a shout of qualifying for the next stage.

Reigning champions Liverpool need just a point from the Red Bull Salzburg game to secure their spot in the Round of 16 of this year’s edition.

On their part, Red Bull Salzburg need to beat Liverpool at home to seal a place in the Champions League knockout stage for the first time in their history.

Jesse Marsch talked about Klopp in his recent interview as monitored by popular media portal Goal.

According to him, Jurgen Klopp has shown his quality as the best manager in the world.

Red Bull Salzburg were beaten 4-3 in the reverse fixture on Matchday 2 with Mohamed Salah getting two of the goals for Liverpool.

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Champions League: Messi Marks Landmark Occasion In Style

Amuda Segun

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Barcelona skipper Lionel Messi was able to mark the occasion of his 700th appearance for his club in style after he scored and also provided two assists.

Messi made his 700th Barcelona appearance during the Champions League clash at home to German Bundesliga giants Borussia Dortmund.

The Argentine national team skipper provided the opening goal of the game through Luis Suarez who had earlier had a goal ruled out by the VAR technology for offside.

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Luis Suarez met a precise pass from Messi before finishing his chance beyond Roman Burki in the Borussia Dortmund goal thus giving the Nou Camp outfit the lead.

It was the 10th goal of the season for the Uruguayan international in the colours of Barcelona this season including the third Champions League goal of the season for him.

His previous two goals came during the 2-1 comeback victory over Italian Serie A side Inter Milan at home on Matchday Two.

Messi moved from provider to scorer in a matter of minutes as he combined with Luis Suarez before finding the back of the net for the second goal.

Suarez and Messi were able to punish the mistake from experienced Borussia Dortmund defender Mats Hummels.

Messi was also involved in the third and final Barcelona goal scored by substitute Antoine Griezmann.

Dortmund substitute Jadon Sancho pulled one back in the last 15 minutes of the game and the England international also hit the post as Barcelona held on for a 3-1 victory.

Lionel Messi was able to celebrate his landmark occasion in style as Barcelona book their place in the knockout stage of the Champions League.

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How Barcelona, RB Leipzig Secured Champions League Knockout Stage Berth On Matchday Five

Amuda Segun

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Five-time European champions Barcelona and German Bundesliga side RB Leipzig are the latest teams to book their place in the next stage of the Champions League.

Both teams picked up the needed result on Matchday Five to confirm their spot in the last 16 (knockout stage) of the competition.

RB Leipzig are through to the Champions League knockout stage for the first time after they picked up the draw needed to qualify though it must be pointed out that they had to do it the hard way at home to Portuguese champions Benfica.

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The Germans trailed to goals from Pizzi and Carlos Vinicius either side of the halftime interval and were heading for defeat until Swedish international Emil Forsberg scored two goals in added time to give his team a 2-2 draw against visitors Benfica.

Emil scored from the penalty spot to halve the two-goal deficit at the start of added time before netting the equalizer six minutes into added time.

Barcelona are also through to the Champions League knockout stage following the 3-1 victory over Borussia Dortmund at the Nou Camp.

The Spanish champions made light work of the German Bundesliga team at home with club skipper Lionel Messi running the show on the occasion of his 700th Barcelona match as he scored one and assisted the other two goals for Luis Suarez and second-half substitute Antoine Griezmann.

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Champions League: Teams Through To Knockout Stage Revealed

Amuda Segun

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The lineup for the Champions League knockout stage is beginning to take shape ahead of the final Matchday in the various groups.

Matchday Six games will conclude the Champions League group stage and they are scheduled to hold in the second week of December.

At the end of Matchday Five, eight teams have already confirmed their place in the knockout stage including Barcelona and RB Leipzig who are the latest club to join the league of the last 16 sides at the end of proceedings on Wednesday night.

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RB Leipzig secured a 2-2 draw at home to Benfica FC of Portugal to seal their place as the German Bundesliga side came back from two goals down at the start of the second half.

On their part, Barcelona needed a win and they got that with the 3-1 victory over visitors Borussia Dortmund.

Lionel Messi made his 700th appearance for his team during the game and he ended up with one goal and two assists.

He has now scored 613 goals in 700 Barcelona games.

At the end of the Matchday Five games on Tuesday night, the likes of Real Madrid, Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City booked their various last 16 spots.

Bayern Munich, Juventus and Paris Saint Germain (PSG) were the first teams to seal qualification for the knockout stage in the Champions League this season as they did this at the end of Matchday Four.

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