This past weekend has set the stage for the Champions League‘s round of 16 first leg. Cristiano Ronaldo scored a hat trick against Real Sociedad while Cristiano's Champions League round of 16 opposing star player, Neymar, netted the lone goal in Paris Saint-Germain’s win over Toulouse. Sergio Aguero tallied four goals in Manchester City’s impressive 5-1 victory over Leicester City while Tottenham edged Arsenal 1-0 though Harry Kane’s sublime goal.
Before Europe’s top clubs battle each other on Tuesday and Wednesday, let’s take a look back at the weekend’s domestic affairs in numbers.
10. Manchester City’s number 10 scored four goals on Leicester City, more than his three total Champions League goals this season. Kevin de Bruyne also put up a dazzling performance against, tallying three assists in Man City's 5-1 win over Leceister. The citizens will look to roll their league form into their Tuesday matchup against F.C. Basel.
9. Brazilian superstar Neymar registered a game high of 9 shots against Toulouse, from which he scored his 19th Ligue 1 goal of the season -- the game-winning goal in PSG’s 1-0 weekend victory. Sergio Ramos and his fellow Madrid defenders will make sure they keep an eye—and a boot—on Neymar in Wednesday's mouthwatering Champions League encounter.
8. Barcelona drew for the 8th time this season as Getafe held them to a stalemate. Not the ideal scoreline to go into a Champions League game against Chelsea, but on a bright note for Barca, Ousmane Dembele returned from injury and new signing Yerry Mina looked promising in his first start for the club.
7. Thomas Mueller’s 7th league-goal of the season from Arjen Robben’s 7th domestic assist was the winner in Bayern Munich’s 2-1 victory over Schalke 04. Munich hasn’t lost to Schalke in 7 years; they know how to beat them. But in the Champions League Bayern will face a team they have never met before, Beşiktaş J.K. of the Turkish Super Lig.
6. In Italy, Juventus and Napoli both passed the 60-point mark last weekend. Juve did so by blanking Fiorentina with Frederico Bernardeschi’s 56th minute opener and Gonzalo Higuain’s 86th minute goal. Napoli on the other hand, extended their unbeaten run over Lazio to 6 games with a 4-1 win.
5. Manchester United were hit with their 5th league loss of the season, days before they take on Sevilla in the Champions League. Newcastle United defeated the Red Devils thanks to Matt Ritchie’s 5th PL goal. Newcastle was winless in 5 outings before taking on Jose Mourinho’s men.
4. Michy Batshuayi will no longer be playing in the Champions League this season due to his move from Chelsea to Borussia Dortmund but it’s worth mentioning him here. Batsman is Borussia’s new superhero, it’s no longer Spider-Man (Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang). Number 44 Batshuayi has been involved in all 4 of Dortmund’s goals since he has joined the club, scoring three and assisting one. He recently netted the opener of BVB’s 2-0 win over Hamburger SV.
3. Madrid goes into their Champions League clash with PSG on a 3-game unbeaten run largely due to 33-year-old Cristiano Ronaldo’s 3 goal performance in the club’s 5-2 win over Real Sociedad. Who’s betting on Ronaldo to score a hat trick against PSG too?
2. Mohamed Salah bagged 2 goals against Tottenham two weeks ago and over the weekend the Egyptian international scored a goal again against Southampton, which brings him to 22 Premier League goals on the 2017-18 season. Will Salah’s form roll over to Liverpool's clash with Porto on Wednesday?
1. The Premier League's number 1 goal scorer Harry Kane netted the solitary goal in Totteham’s North London Derby win over Arsenal on Saturday. The Spurs are going into the Champions League round of 16 without losing a game in a little over 1 month—that’s much needed when you’re playing reigning Serie A champions Juventus. As for Arsenal, they haven’t had a win streak in the Premier League since the 11th month of last year.
Author: Onz Chery