Headline: PSG Advances to Champions League Knockouts, Newcastle Eliminated
Paris Saint-Germain and Porto qualified for the Champions League last 16
PSG tied 1-1 with Borussia Dortmund in Group F. They advanced as the second-place team because AC Milan won against Newcastle at St James’ Park, knocking out Eddie Howe’s team.
On Wednesday, Paris Saint-Germain and Porto made it to the Champions League last 16. Unfortunately, Newcastle was eliminated after losing 2-1 at home to AC Milan. PSG secured their spot as runners-up in Group F by drawing 1-1 with Borussia Dortmund, while AC Milan came from behind to defeat Newcastle at St James’ Park, ending Eddie Howe’s team’s journey. Newcastle, hoping to continue their first Champions League campaign in 20 years, took the lead with a fantastic goal from Joelinton in the first half.
However, Christian Pulisic leveled the score in the 60th minute, and substitute Samuel Chukwueze secured a heartbreaking 84th-minute winner for Newcastle. Despite this, AC Milan’s efforts were not sufficient to surpass PSG in the standings.
“We put our all into the match. I can’t request anything more in terms of dedication, effort, and physical exertion. Unfortunately, things didn’t go our way,” said Howe.
The French champions, facing the risk of their first group stage exit since the Qatari takeover in 2011, trailed when Karim Adeyemi scored early in the second half in Germany.
Warren Zaire-Emery saved the day for PSG five minutes later. Kylian Mbappe maneuvered into the box, and his pass got deflected to the teenager. Zaire-Emery moved forward and hammered a strong shot into the goal.
Mbappe, whose future with PSG will be a topic of discussion in January, had a goal disallowed due to offside. Nevertheless, the single point turned out to be sufficient for the visitors. They ended up tied on points with Milan but advanced because of a superior head-to-head goal difference.
“We’re not the finished product yet,” said PSG captain Marquinhos. “We need to focus on preparing well and improving because tougher opponents are on the horizon.”
Porto complete line-up for knockouts
Porto advanced to the last 16 by defeating Shakhtar Donetsk 5-3.
The home team just had to avoid losing at the Estadio do Dragao to move forward in Group H alongside Barcelona. An early goal from Galeno gave Porto the lead.
Danylo Sikan brought Shakhtar level, but Galeno scored once more, and Mehdi Taremi extended the lead to 3-1 for the Portuguese side.
Shakhtar got a lifeline with an own goal, but 40-year-old Pepe calmed Porto’s nerves with the team’s fourth goal. Francisco Conceicao then sealed the game, and Aguinaldo scored a late consolation for Shakhtar.
“In Porto, we never aim for a draw, even though that result would have worked for us too. The manager said this match was like a final, and we had to win. Mission accomplished,” Galeno told CNN Portugal.
Royal Antwerp secured a memorable 3-2 victory over Barcelona, with George Ilenikhena scoring the winning goal in stoppage time.
The Belgians took the lead twice with goals from Arthur Vermeeren and Vincent Janssen, but Barcelona responded with goals from Ferran Torres and Marc Guiu. It seemed like a draw was on the cards until Ilenikhena’s heroics.
Manchester City achieved a rare feat by becoming the second English club to win all six Champions League group stage games. They secured a 3-2 victory against Red Star Belgrade.
Micah Hamilton and Oscar Bobb, both twenty years old, scored their first goals for the club in the match. Hwang In-boom later scored a goal for the Serbian champions.
Kalvin Phillips scored his first goal for City with a late penalty, and Aleksandar Katai scored a consolation goal for Red Star in added time.
The defending champions, City, had already secured the top spot in Group G, leading ahead of RB Leipzig, who won 2-1 at home against Switzerland’s Young Boys.
Benjamin Sesko and Emil Forsberg scored goals for Leipzig, with Ebrima Colley equalizing in a frenetic five-minute spell in the second half.
Atletico secured the top spot in Group E with a 2-0 victory over runners-up Lazio, thanks to goals from Antoine Griezmann and Samuel Lino.
Celtic broke a 15-game winless streak in the group stage by securing a 2-1 victory over Feyenoord, with Gustaf Lagerbielke’s late header.
Luis Palma’s first-half penalty gave the Scots the lead, but it seemed their winless run would persist when Yankuba Minteh leveled the score with eight minutes left.