Barca and Man City wins give them dominating leads in UCL groups


Ferran Torres of FC Barcelona, Taras Stepanenko of FC Shakhtar Donetsk during the UEFA Champions League match between FC Barcelona v Shakhtar Donetsk at the Lluis Companys Olympic Stadium on October 25, 2023 in Barcelona Spain.

First-half goals from Ferran Torres and Fermin López steered Barcelona to victory despite Georgiy Sudakov pulling one back for the visitors with a neat strike after the hour mark. 

It was Barcelona’s third win in three matches to maintain a perfect record in the group. They will face Donetsk in the return leg on November 7.

Belgium champions Antwerp remain at the bottom of the group after a 4-1 defeat at home to Porto. Yusuf handed the hosts the lead in the 37th minute, but Antwerp, in a repeat of their defeat to Donetsk, collapsed after the break to concede four times. Substitute Evanilson scored a hat trick as Porto moved into the second spot in the group.

The Champions League has rapidly become a purgatory for Antwerp. In the domestic league, they have conceded just eight goals in 11 matches, but in Europe they have seen 12 goals go in against them after just three matches.

In Group F, PSG took the lead thanks to a 3-0 win at the Parc des Princes against AC Milan. Randal Kolo Muani, Lee Kang-in and Kylian Mbappe were on the scoresheet for the hosts. Borussia Dortmund’s Felix Nmecha handed Newcastle their first Champions League defeat of the season.

The Germans were saved twice by the bar in the second half – Dortmund and Newcastle share second place on four points, two behind leaders PSG.

In Group G, Erling Haaland scored twice to ensure Manchester City’s 3-1 victory away to Young Boys for their third group win. The English champions laboured and it was not until the 86th minute that Haaland decided the match with his second of the night. Leipzig defeated Red Star with the same scoreline in the other group game.

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