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Rediff.com  » Sports » Champions League PHOTOS: Messi treble sets goals record; Chelsea, City win

Champions League PHOTOS: Messi treble sets goals record; Chelsea, City win

November 26, 2014 11:52 IST

Photos from the Champions League matches played across Europe on Tuesday.

Barcelona's Lionel Messi celebrates on scoring enroute to breaking the Champions Leaague record for most goals on Tuesday

Barcelona's Lionel Messi celebrates on scoring enroute to breaking the Champions Leaague record for most goals on Tuesday. Photograph: FC Barcelona

Barcelona forward Lionel Messi set a Champions League scoring record of 74 goals when he netted a hat-trick in Tuesday's 4-0 Group F win at APOEL Nicosia.

The Barca and Argentina captain surpassed the record of 71 he jointly held with former Real Madrid and Schalke 04 striker Raul when he put his side 2-0 ahead shortly before halftime.

The 27-year-old added two more goals in the second half to complete his 31st career treble, his fifth in Europe's elite club competition and the first in which he has scored all three with his less-favoured right foot.

"I am pleased to have achieved such a nice record in such a nice and important competition but the really important thing is the three points," Messi said in a television interview.

His achievement is the latest milestone in a stellar career and comes three days after he broke the six decades-old La Liga scoring record with a hat-trick in Barca’s 5-1 home win over Sevilla. Messi overhauled former Athletic Bilbao striker Telmo Zarra’s tally of 251 goals, set in 1955, and has 253 in 289 league games for the Catalan club he joined as a 13-year-old.

Messi's 74 Champions League goals came in 91 appearances, while Raul needed 142 for Real and Schalke 04 for his 71.

'The PSG match is going to be tough'

APOEL Nicosia's Joao Guilherme (right) and Barcelona?s Luis Suarez fight for the ball during their Champions League Group F match

APOEL Nicosia's Joao Guilherme (right) and Barcelona's Luis Suarez fight for the ball during their Champions League Group F match. Photograph: Andreas Manolis/Reuters

Real forward Cristiano Ronaldo, who ended Messi’s four-year run as World Player of the Year in 2013 with his second award, has scored 70 Champions League goals in 107 matches.

The Portugal captain will try to close the gap when Real play at FC Basel in Champions League Group B on Wednesday.

Barca had already qualified for the Champions League last 16 along with group leaders Paris St Germain, who won 3-1 at home to Ajax Amsterdam.

Barca need to beat the Ligue 1 side when they meet at the Nou Camp on Dec. 10 to secure top spot.

"We will try to keep going in the same way and meet the objectives we set ourselves at the start of the season," Messi said.

"The PSG match is going to be tough. They have some very good players and they are a team who are growing and improving all the time.

"But we are playing at home so we'll try to play a great match and finish first in the group."

Chelsea qualify in style with five-goal romp

Chelsea's Didier Drogba celebrates with his teammates after scoring against Schalke 04 during their Champions League Group G match in Gelsenkirchen, Germany on Tuesday

Chelsea's Didier Drogba celebrates with his teammates after scoring against Schalke 04 during their Champions League Group G match in Gelsenkirchen, Germany on Tuesday. Photograph: Ina Fassbender/Reuters

Chelsea produced a footballing masterclass to romp to a 5-0 win at Schalke 04 on Tuesday to power into the last 16 of the Champions League and make it a miserable night for former coach Roberto Di Matteo.

Captain John Terry headed in a corner after 78 seconds and Brazil midfielder Willian doubled the lead with a fierce low shot on the half hour.

A Jan Kirchhoff own goal in the 44th minute made it 3-0 and second-half goals from substitutes Didier Drogba and Ramires allowed Chelsea to extend their unbeaten start to the season to 19 games in all competitions.

"It was a fantastic performance from the first to the last minute...5-0 in Germany is not normal," coach Jose Mourinho told reporters.

"Any team would have struggled against us tonight with the quality we showed."

Schalke, who hit the woodwork in the first half, had little to offer against a rampant Chelsea as coach Di Matteo lost his first meeting against the team he led to Champions League glory in 2012.

Chelsea clinched top spot in Group G with 11 points from five games, four ahead of Sporting who beat Maribor (three) 3-1 on Tuesday.

'We gave Chelsea too much space to play'

Schalke 04's Klaas-Jan Huntelaar challenges Chelsea's Gary Cahill (right)

Schalke 04's Klaas-Jan Huntelaar challenges Chelsea's Gary Cahill (right). Photograph: Ina Fassbender/Reuters

Schalke, who lost for the first time at home under Di Matteo, are in third position on five points with one match remaining.

"I'm at a loss for words," said Schalke captain Benedikt Hoewedes.

"I can only apologise to everyone. We gave Chelsea too much space to play."

Diego Costa, who has scored 11 goals in 10 games in this season's Premier League but none in Europe, raced clear in the first minute but had his shot blocked.

The resulting corner, however, saw Terry beat Hoewedes in the air to give his side a dream start.

Chelsea were lucky when Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting's deflected shot bounced off the crossbar but Willian put the hosts firmly in their place with a second goal.

The unfortunate Kirchhoff then headed a left-wing corner, from the outstanding Cesc Fabregas, into his own net on the stroke of halftime.

Drogba tapped the ball into an empty net after being set up by Willian before the Ivorian lofted the ball to the far post for Ramires to nod the fifth goal for the runaway Premier League leaders.

Chelsea's victory equalled their best Champions League away result, 5-0 at Galatasaray in 1999.

Aguero treble keeps Manchester City in contention

Sergio Aguero of Manchester City celebrates after scoring his team's third and matchwinning goal against FC Bayern Munich during theIR UEFA Champions League Group E match at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester on Tuesday

Sergio Aguero of Manchester City celebrates after scoring his team's third and matchwinning goal against FC Bayern Munich during theIR UEFA Champions League Group E match at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester on Tuesday. Photograph: Alex Livesey/Getty Images

Manchester City's Sergio Aguero struck a hat-trick, including two late goals, in a 3-2 victory against 10-man Bayern Munich on Tuesday to keep alive their hopes of reaching the Champions League knockout phase.

Aguero raced through to slot past Manuel Neuer in the 85th and 91st minutes to snatch a stunning win, the Argentine having given City a 21st minute lead with a penalty after Bayern's Mehdi Benatia was shown a red card for bringing him down.

Xabi Alonso and Robert Lewandowski had struck within five minutes of each other shortly before halftime to put the visitors in front at the break.

City are level on five points with CSKA Moscow and AS Roma, who earlier drew 1-1, and know if they win in Rome and the Russians fail to beat Bayern in the final round of Group E matches they will qualify for the last 16.

"I am very happy it is very important for us. The (group) draw was difficult but we're happy now because this is a very important result and the next game we have to win," Aguero told ITV ahead of their final group match at AS Roma.

City manager Manuel Pellegrini had said any pressure his side were under was self-inflicted but they could do little to prevent Bayern dominating the early possession. Goalkeeper Joe Hart had to be alert in the early stages to deny Sebastian Rode, who raced onto Arjen Robben's clipped pass before the Dutch winger dragged a shot wide.

Numerical advantage allowed City to establish a foothold in the game

Manchester City's Vincent Kompany (left) is held back by Bayern Munich's coach Pep Guardiola after a foul by Bayern Munich's Robert Lewandowski (2nd from right) during their Champions League Group E match in Manchester on Tuesday

Manchester City's Vincent Kompany (left) is held back by Bayern Munich's coach Pep Guardiola after a foul by Bayern Munich's Robert Lewandowski (2nd from right) during their Champions League Group E match in Manchester on Tuesday. Photograph: Phil Noble/Reuters

Moments after Eliaquim Mangala produced a crucial block to deny Rafinha, Aguero latched onto a hopeful ball upfield and was felled by last man Benatia as he raced into the box. The Argentine striker steadied himself before coolly dispatching the penalty past Manuel Neuer to put City ahead.

The numerical advantage allowed City to establish a foothold in the game and, even without suspended duo Yaya Toure and Fernandinho, they began to dictate the midfield exchanges.

But just as they appeared to be in the ascendancy against the Bavarians, classy Spanish midfielder Alonso equalised with a smart, low free kick that deceived a static Hart.

With City still reeling from the shock of surrendering their lead, Poland international Lewandowski looped an effort past the stranded Hart via a fortuitous combination of head and shoulder.

After halftime City's James Milner and Jesus Navas went close before the visitors reasserted themselves, effortlessly maintaining possession for long periods. Frank Lampard drew an acrobatic save from Neuer before City captain Vincent Kompany swivelled to shoot wide and then, just as their hopes appeared to have faded, Aguero took control.

First Samir Nasri intercepted a misplaced Alonso pass and fed Aguero who slotted the ball past the advancing Neuer to bring the scores level. Six minutes later Aguero capitalised on Jerome Boateng's error to bag his 17th goal in all competitions this season with another calm finish under pressure to light up the Etihad Stadium.

Ibrahimovic inspires PSG to 3-1 win against Ajax

Paris St Germain's Zlatan Ibrahimovic (2nd from right) reacts after he scored against Ajax Amsterdam during their Champions League Group F soccer match at the Parc des Princes Stadium in Paris on Tuesday

Paris St Germain's Zlatan Ibrahimovic (2nd from right) reacts after he scored against Ajax Amsterdam during their Champions League Group F soccer match at the Parc des Princes Stadium in Paris on Tuesday. Photograph: Charles Platiau/Reuters

Zlatan Ibrahimovic inspired Paris St Germain to a 3-1 home win against Ajax Amsterdam on Tuesday that leaves them needing a point from their final Champions League game at Barcelona to top Group F.

The French champions, now unbeaten in 20 games in all competitions this season, have 13 points from five matches after Edinson Cavani scored a double and Ibrahimovic found the back of the net with a clever half-volley.

Ajax had briefly levelled through Davy Klaassen, who benefited from yet another lapse in concentration at the heart of PSG's defence.

Barcelona are second one point behind after beating APOEL Nicosia 4-0.

Ajax have two points to APOEL's one, before they face each other in the Netherlands on Dec. 10 with a place in the Europa League at stake.

Ibrahimovic was playing in the Champions League for the first time since PSG's first group game at Ajax and the Sweden forward did not disappoint, creating the first goal before sealing the win when PSG were heading towards a disappointing draw.

That was Ibrahimovic's first goal since he returned from a heel injury earlier this month after nearly two months on the sidelines.

Gregory van der Wiel was lucky to escape punishment for a harsh tackle on Ajax captain Nicolai Boilesen, who was replaced injured in the 10th minute by Nick Viergever.

PSG went close in the 24th minute after Lavezzi had been perfectly set up on the break by Ibrahimovic, only for the Argentine to shoot straight at Jasper Cillessen when a simple flick would have done the job.

Lavezzi was played in by Ibrahimovic again and this time made the right choice in front of Cillessen, tapping the ball into the path of Cavani who scored into the empty goal.

Ajax dominated possession, but they failed to make the most of it until the 67th minute.

Ricardo Kishna whipped in the perfect cross from the left wing for Klaassen to equalise with a fine diving header after he was left unmarked by Marquinhos and David Luiz.

Laurent Blanc immediately substituted Lavezzi for Brazil forward Lucas, but it was Ibrahimovic who made the difference, scoring with a fine half-volley on the turn after chesting down Javier Pastore's pass in the 79th minute.

Cavani wrapped it up five minutes later, rounding Cillessen and pushing the ball into the empty net after intercepting Niki Zimling's poor back pass.

CSKA score late leveller to snatch draw with Roma

CSKA Moscow's Vasili Berezutski scored in the third minute of stoppage time to grab a 1-1 Champions League draw with AS Roma on Tuesday that left Group E in the balance.

Roma appeared to have one foot in the knockout stages when the evergreen Francesco Totti netted with a thunderbolt of a freekick just before halftime.

Yet Berezutski got the faintest touch to a set piece that was floated in from the left to grab a precious point.

The draw leaves Roma second in Group E, level on five points with third place CSKA after five matches. Manchester City, with two points, host Bayern Munich later on Tuesday.

CSKA started well as Georgi Schennikov had an early opportunity in the seventh minute, but the left back decided to go for goal, when he would have been better off squaring to the unmarked Seydou Doumbia.

As the half wore on, Roma began to get into their stride.

The Italians had only picked up one point in their last three Champions League encounters, but they were playing some intricate football with the Totti and Kostas Manolas looking dangerous.

The visitors had a fine save from goalkeeper Morgan De Sanctis to thank for keeping the scores level on 39 minutes.

A fine throughball by Bebras Natcho put Seydou Doumbia through on goal and the Ivorian, who had netted three times in his last two matches, would have banked on finding the target, but the 37-year-old De Sanctis produced a fine save with his legs.

Roma were indebted to another veteran for giving them the lead. Totti rifled home a freekick from just outside the penalty area in his 54th Champions League encounter, breaking his own record as the competition’s oldest scorer, setting a new mark of 38 years and 59 days.

Rudi Garcia’s team should have doubled their lead on the hour mark. Radja Nainggolan managed to slalom his way through the Russian champions' defence to put himself clean through on goal, but dragged his right-footed shot wide of the left hand post.

Roma were happy to sit back and defend, and ultimately paid the penalty deep into stoppage time when Berezutski netted to keep the hosts' hopes alive.

Slick Porto put BATE out of their misery

An inspired second-half performance by Hector Herrera led Porto to a 3-0 win at BATE Borisov which put the Belarus side out of their Champions League misery and sent Shakhtar Donetsk through on Tuesday.

The Mexican broke the deadlock with a long-range shot and was also involved in the other two goals, scored by Jackson Martinez and Cristian Tello, as Porto, already qualified with two games to spare, chalked up their fourth win in five games.

BATE's fourth defeat in Group H ended their lingering chances of qualifying and meant that second-placed Shakhtar Donetsk (eight points) qualified before that start of their game against Athletic Bilbao.

It would have been an enormous surprise if BATE had gone through after a 6-0 loss in Portugal, and 5-0 and 7-0 defeats against the Ukrainians.

Porto, leaders with 13 points, dominated possession in a first half played in sub-zero temperatures without really troubling Sergei Chernik in the BATE goal.

The visitors were much more efficient after the break and went ahead in the 56th minute when Casemiro won possession about 30 metres from goal and slipped the ball to Herrera who scored with a dipping effort.

Nine minutes later, a typically neat passing move culminated with Yacine Brahimi crossing for Herrera and he laid the ball off for Martinez to side-foot into the corner.

Herrera capped his display by threading the ball through to Tello who cut inside a defender and fired past Chernik, leaving BATE with three points courtesy of their shock 2-1 win over Athletic Bilbao in September.

BATE, full name Borisov Works of Automobile and Tractor Electric Equipment, won the Belarus Premier League for the ninth season in a row earlier this month, and start in the second qualifying round next season.

Nani's solo effort helps Sporting rise to second

Sporting's Nani (centre) celebrates his goal against Maribor during their Champions League Group G soccer match at Alvalade stadium in Lisbon on Tuesday

Sporting's Nani (centre) celebrates his goal against Maribor during their Champions League Group G soccer match at Alvalade stadium in Lisbon on Tuesday. Photograph: Rafael Marchante/Reuters

Winger Nani scored a superb solo goal to help Sporting beat Maribor 3-1 on Tuesday as the Portuguese side gave a big boost to their chances of qualifying for the Champions League last 16.

Carlos Mane and Islam Slimani were also on target for Sporting, who won their second game in a row after taking only one point from their opening three matches, while an own goal by Jefferson kept the Slovenians in the hunt until the last 20 minutes.

Sporting are second in Group G with seven points from five matches, two ahead of Schalke who were thrashed 5-0 at home by Chelsea.

The Portuguese visit Chelsea in their last game where a point will be enough to finish second thanks to their better head-to-head record with Schalke who travel to Maribor.

Maribor, bottom with three points, have been eliminated while Chelsea (11 points) top the group.

Mane stroked home Jefferson's low cross at the far post in the 10th minute to give Sporting a flying start.

Nani doubled the lead 25 minutes later when he collected a pass inside the penalty area, side-stepped his marker, saw his first shot blocked, pounced on the rebound, jinked to the right, put his foot on the ball, side-stepped two markers and fired the ball in.

Jefferson deflected an Ales Mejac cross into his own net just before halftime to bring Maribor back into the match.

Sporting then struggled to regain their rhythm after the game was held up for 45 minutes at halftime by a floodlight failure.

However, they restored their two-goal advantage in the 65th minute when Joao Mario's cross from the right was headed back into the goalmouth by Nani at the far post and Algeria forward Slimani hooked the ball in from close range.

Shakhtar lose to Bilbao having already qualified

Shakhtar Donetsk lost 1-0 at home to Athletic Bilbao in the Champions League on Tuesday but had already been handed a place in the last 16 thanks to Porto's earlier win at BATE Borisov.

BATE's 3-0 defeat meant Shakhtar, who have reached the knockout stage for the third time in the last five seasons, qualified with eight points in Group H behind Porto on 13.

Mikel San Jose struck the winner for Bilbao from a set-piece after 68 minutes when he latched onto Benat’s cross and tapped the ball into the roof of the net against the run of play.

“I guess we were a bit relaxed after knowing the result from Minsk. Athletic were more motivated and put a lot of pressure on us," said Shakhtar coach Mircea Lucescu.

Shakhtar had chances to take control of the game but Bilbao keeper Gorka Iraizoz foiled Alex Teixeira after a defensive blunder in the sixth minute and produced a full-length save to parry a low Douglas Costa shot that was heading for the corner.

Shakhtar were frustrated two minutes from time when the ball appeared to be handled on the line by a defender and claims for a penalty were waved away by referee Mark Clattenburg.

"I was surprised when the referee did not award us with a penalty in the end," added Lucescu. "Even the supporters saw the handball in the area. I wonder why we need assistant referees behind the goal if they cannot react to the moments like this."

Shakthar's Brazilian striker Luiz Adriano, who had already equalled Cristiano Ronaldo's record nine-goal tally in the Champions League group stage, has missed the chance to break it having been booked and suspended for the final group game.

Bilbao's win puts them on four points, one ahead of bottom side BATE who the Spaniards need to avoid defeat against at home in their last group game to seal a Europa League spot.

"There are no other options but a win when your team are bottom of the table," Bilbao coach Ernesto Valverde said after celebrating the narrow win over Shakhtar.

"Now that we have some experience in the Champions League I hope to carry on with this winning mood. I hope to clinch three points in the final game.

"I am not inclined to think it was our best game in recent times. Both sides had chances to win the game.

"Each coach may have his own point of view but I believe we deserved this result. We created a lot of pressure on Shakhtar, and you cannot win a game in the Champions League without pressure," added Valverde.

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