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Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Borussia Dortmund’s Champions League hopes dented in Nicosia draw

With Madrid and Tottenham on seven points after their 1-1 draw in Madrid, Dortmund, with one point, faces a tall order to emerge from the group.

By: AP | Published: October 18, 2017 8:48:22 am
borussia dortmund, dortmund, leipzig, monaco, Besiktas, porto, Feynoord, champions league, football, sports news, indian express Borussia Dortmund’s Marc Bartra looks dejected. (Source: Reuters)

Borussia Dortmund’s hopes of making the second round of the Champions League took a major blow when it was held at APOEL Nicosi to 1-1 on Tuesday.

After losing its opening games in Group H to Tottenham and Real Madrid, Dortmund needed a win to kick-start its campaign in Europe’s premier club competition. It didn’t.

“In the end we have to be happy we didn’t lose the game. It will be difficult now,” Dortmund coach Peter Bosz said of his side’s hopes of progression.

Dortmund, which reached the final in 2013, started well against a side that hadn’t scored in its previous six games, but then stagnated as APOEL organized.

Despite suffering a double blow in the first half when striker Igor De Camargo and goalkeeper Boy Waterman both went off with injuries, APOEL managed to restrict the visitors’ space and opportunities.

Dortmund’s lackluster performance continued after the break and the noisy stadium erupted in joy when Mickael Pote ended APOEL’s barren run in front of goal – thanks to a mistake from goalkeeper Roman Buerki.

Buerki’s attempted pass out went straight to Lorenzo Ebecilio, who eluded Marcel Schmelzer and fired a shot that Buerki failed to gather. Pote was first to react to score from the rebound.

Greek defender Sokratis equalized five minutes later with a header to Mario Goetze’s cross.

Shinji Kagawa struck the crossbar two minutes later after reserve goalkeeper Gudino got a touch to his shot, and Dortmund knew it was out of luck when Gudino and the post denied Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang in injury time.

With Madrid and Tottenham on seven points after their 1-1 draw in Madrid, Dortmund, with one point, faces a tall order to emerge from the group.

Spartak storms to 5-1 win over Sevilla

Spartak Moscow sliced apart Sevilla with rapid counterattacks to beat the Spanish team 5-1 in the Champions League on Tuesday.

The Russian team is level with Liverpool on five points at the top of Group E. Sevilla dropped from first to third after a result its coach Eduardo Berizzo called “very tough.” Liverpool is top on goal difference.

Quincy Promes headed the Russian champion’s opening goal in the 18th minute, eventually finishing with two goals and two assists. Simon Kjaer leveled for Sevilla from a corner in the 30th.

Sevilla put Spartak under heavy pressure at the start of the second half, but was left vulnerable at the back.

Spartak hit back hard as first Lorenzo Melgarejo scored off Promes’s pass in the 58th, then captain Denis Glushakov volleyed in Dmitry Kombarov’s cross in the 67th.

Luiz Adriano rounded the keeper to bag Spartak’s fourth goal, again off a pass from Promes, who added Spartak’s fifth.

Bernard double seals victory at Feynoord for Shakhtar Donetsk

Brazilian Bernard bagged a double as 10-man Shakhtar Donetsk came from behind to defeat Feyenoord in their Champions League Group F clash at De Kuip on Tuesday.

Steven Berghuis had put the home side in front, but goals in each half from Bernard turned the game in favour of the Ukrainian side, who ended the contest with 10 men after Yaroslav Rakitsky was sent off.

The victory moves Shakhtar up to second in the group with six points from three matches, three behind leaders Manchester City.
Napoli have three points but Feyenoord have now suffered three successive losses.

The Dutch side’s positive opening was rewarded with an early goal as Tonny Vilhena had his shot blocked by Shakhtar’s goalkeeper Andriy Pyatov, but the rebound fell perfectly for Berghuis to score inside eight minutes.

But Bernard equalised midway through the first half after Feyenoord hesitated in defence and Fred slipped a superb pass through for his fellow Brazilian to easily beat Brad Jones.

That was the way it stayed at the break, but eight minutes into the second half, Bernard converted a pass from Bohdan Butko.

The visitors were reduced to 10 men with 15 minutes remaining when Rakitsky picked up a second yellow card as he pulled back Jens Toornstra, but they clung on to secure the win.

Tosun scores 2 as Besiktas beats Monaco

Striker Cenk Tosun scored twice as Besiktas won 2-1 away to Monaco for a third straight win to move closer to qualifying for the Champions League knockout stage on Tuesday.

Monaco, last season’s swashbuckling semifinalist, is heading the other way with one point from three matches.

However, with Liepzig beating Porto 3-2 in Group G’s other game, Monaco still has a chance and plays Besiktas away on Nov. 1.

With three games left, Liepzig has four points and Porto three.

Leipzig beat Porto 3-2

Eight years after the club’s formation, Leipzig defeated Porto 3-2 Tuesday for its first Champions League win with all goals in the first half.

Leipzig boosted its chances of progressing from Group G, where Besiktas won 2-1 at Monaco to take charge with a maximum nine points. Leipzig, which plays Porto again on Nov. 1, is second on four points.

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