This week we watched another round of Champions League games and saw some real surprises. A lot of players with Nigerian descent had good roles for their teams.
Brian Idowu, the Super Eagles defender was in the starting line-up for Lokomotiv Moscow who travelled to Portugal to play Porto at the Estadio de Dragao. The home side took an early lead through Hector Herrera and never looked back. Moussa Marega made the score 2:0 at the break. In the second half, the visitors from Moscow pulled one goal back courtesy of Jefferson Farfan who came in after the break, before Porto scored again through Jesus Corona. Substitute Otavio Edmilson Monteiro scored the fourth goal for Porto in the third minute of stoppage time for the final score of 4:1. With this defeat, Lokomotiv Moscow are definitely not going to make the elimination phase of the competition and only have a theoretical chance of getting into the Europa League if they could somehow finish third in the group.
Schalke 04 hosted the Turkish side Galatasaray at the Veltins Arena and secured all three points with a 2:0 victory. Guido Burgstaller in the first half and Mark Uth in the second were the scorers for the home team. Henry Onyekuru, the Nigerian international, played the full 90 minutes but couldn’t find the back of the net. Galatasaray are third in the group and still have a mathematical chance to make it to the next phase of the competition. If not, they are likely to finish in place number three and carry on their European adventure in the Europa league.
Dominic Solanke, a young Liverpool prospect, travelled to Serbia with the team but didn’t feature in the final 18. He watched his team suffer a shocking but deserved 2:0 loss to Red Star Belgrade at the Rajko Mitic stadium in Belgrade. Milan Pavkov scored twice for the home side to make Group C exciting to follow with two games to go in the group stages. All teams have a chance of qualifying for the next stage, but Napoli, Liverpool and PSG are surely favourites to carry on, either in the elimination stage of the Champions League or in the Europa League, as third in the group.
The next two rounds will decide who will take the two top spots in all the groups and continue with the competition. They are scheduled to be played four weeks from now, on 11th and 12th of December.