Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : December 9th 2015 Contents A63
Wednesday, December 9, 2015 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
WOLFSBURG---Three-time winner Man-
chester United crashed out of the Cham-
pions League on Tuesday, losing 3-2 to
Wolfsburg which advanced to the round of
16 for the first time.
Anthony Martial put United ahead in the
10th before Naldo volleyed in the equalizer
in the 14th. Vieirinha regained the lead for
Wolfsburg in the 29th, before an own goal
by Josuha Guilavogui in the 82nd tied the
But two minutes later Naldo scored his
second with a header to seal Wolfsburg's
victory and increase pressure on United coach
Louis van Gaal.
The loss, coupled with PSV Eindhoven's
2-1 home victory over CSKA Moscow,
dropped United to third place in Group B,
meaning that it will now play in the Europa
Wolfsburg won the group with 12 points
and PSV also advanced with 10 points, two
more than United.
"The team did an outstanding job," Wolfs-
burg coach Dieter Hecking said.
"If you beat a team like Manchester United,
you must have done something right," mid-
fielder Julian Draxler said.
United, which was missing captain Wayne
Rooney, saw left back Matteo Darmian limp
off with what looked a hamstring injury.
Ronaldo sets record,
Madrid routs Malmo 8-0
MADRID---Cristiano Ronaldo became the
first player to score 10 goals or more in the
group stage of the Champions League, claim-
ing four as Real Madrid routed Malmo 8-0.
The Portuguese striker reached 11 goals in
six games, surpassing nine scored by Luiz
Adriano with Shakhtar Donetsk last season.
Ronaldo also scored nine times in the 2013-
Ronaldo also set up two goals by Karim
Benzema, who scored a hat trick at the San-
tiago Bernabeu Stadium.
The game meant little for Madrid because
it had already secured first place in Group
A, but the convincing victory helped ease
the pressure on coach Rafa Benitez and pres-
ident Florentino Perez. Fans were still angry
at the demoralising 4-0 home loss to
Barcelona in the Spanish league and disqual-
ification from the Copa del Rey because the
club used an ineligible player.
Ronaldo made life easier for his coach and
president with another remarkable perform-
ance, helping Madrid end the group stage
with 16 points from six games.
In Paris, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Lucas set
each other up for goals as Paris Saint-Germain
beat Shakhtar Donetsk 2-0 in their final
With Real Madrid having already secured
first place in Group A and PSG guaranteed
second spot, there was nothing at stake for
home fans on a chilly night at Parc des
Sevilla earns Europa League berth
SEVILLE---Sevilla secured a berth in the
Europa League after beating Juventus 1-0,
when Fernando Llorente scored against his
Juventus failed to convert several scoring
chances before Llorente struck with a headed
goal in the 65th minute at Sanchez Pizjuan
Sevilla will move on to join the Europa
League, a competition it has won the past
two seasons, after overtaking Borussia
Moenchengladbach and finishing third in
Juventus was already qualified for the round
of 16, but last year's finalist missed out fin-
ishing as group winner after Manchester City
rallied for a 4-2 win at home over
Moenchengladbach to finish top of the group.
Atletico beats Benfica to win Group C
Atletico Madrid striker Luciano Vietto
scored one goal after setting up the opener
to lead a 2-1 win at Benfica that leapfrogged
them over their Portuguese host and won
Playing at the same stadium where it lost
the 2014 final, Diego Simeone's side avenged
a 2-1 loss to Benfica from earlier this season
and topped Group C by three points. Benfica
also advanced to the round of 16.
In Istanbul, Galatasaray clinched a spot in
the Europa League by drawing with Astana
1-1. The Turkish team finished third in Group
C with five points, one more than its Kazakh
Wolfsburg knocks Man Utd
out Champions League Mourinho spreads
striker Neymar has tweaked a
leg muscle a day before the
Champions League titleholders
visit Bayer Leverkusen.
Barcelona says Neymar
picked up a "small" muscle
injury in his left leg during team
practice yesterday. The club says
the speed of his recovery will
determine when he returns to
Barcelona has already won
its qualifying group and has a
place in the round of 16.
Barcelona hosts Deportivo La
Coruna in the Spanish league
on Saturday. It then heads to
Japan to play the Club World
Neymar has 16 goals for
Barcelona this season, second
only to Luis Suarez's 19. (AP)
LONDON---Jose Mourinho did not want to con-
template the "if."
The repercussions if Chelsea is embarrassingly
eliminated from the Champions League on Wednes-
day. Yet, the manager still ensured he delivered a
blunt message to Roman Abramovich just in case
the owner was thinking about firing him.
"You can look in many directions and you can
decide that this is not a one-man responsibility,"
Mourinho said yesterday.
"I think I did lots of good things in this club for
the owner knows the quality I have," he added. "I
don't think the owner is a person to change with the
wind ... the owner knows I am the right person to
do the job."
Such self-assurance belies the parlous state of
Mourinho's team and the pressure on the Portuguese.
Domestically, the Premier League champions have
been reeling from setback after setback. The latest
humiliation came on Saturday with an eighth loss
in 15 league games at home to Bournemouth.
In the Champions League, Chelsea made a faltering
start in Group G before staging a recovery. After
losing the opener to Porto in September, Chelsea
hosts Mourinho's former team on Wednesday. Win
or draw and Chelsea advances to the round of 16.
But Chelsea would drop into the Europa League if
it loses to Porto and Dynamo Kiev beats Maccabi Tel
Aviv, which has no points from five games.
Winning either of Europe's club competitions could
be Chelsea's only way of qualifying for the Champions
League next season, given that Mourinho's side is
14th in the Premier League and 14 points from the
Mourinho portrays the worst spell of his managerial
career---which included his first Chelsea reign from
2004 to 2007---as stimulating rather than disheart-
"As a manager it makes me better because it is
the first time for me," Mourinho said. "It is a new
experience. It's something I am not used to ... when
you win all the time and you have always happiness
with the results it is a wonderful life.
Here are other talking points going into today's
Group G games:
"It is not good for a big club to go there and win
it," Mourinho said of the Europa League earlier this
The Europa League trophy won by Chelsea just
before Mourinho returned to the west London club
in June 2013 is seen by the manager as a stain on
the club. A symbol of the club's deficiencies in the
2012-13 when Rafa Benitez was mostly in charge.
But by Wednesday night, Mourinho might have
to face up to relegation to the Europa League by fin-
"I was always against the teams that were knocked
out of the Champions League going into the Europa
League because I think there is a such a different
level of competition that I didn't think it's fair for
the teams in the Europa League to do the group phase
then in February get the teams that were knocked
out of the Champions League," Mourinho said. (AP)
Barca's Neymar tweaks leg muscle before CL match
PARIS---Karim Benzema s
lawyers have requested a face-
to-face meeting with Mathieu
Valbuena in an effort to ease
tensions between the France
teammates embroiled in a
Benzema, who has been
handed preliminary charges of
conspiracy to blackmail relating
to an extortion scam over a sex
tape involving Valbuena, has
no right to meet the Lyon mid-
fielder during the investigation.
The hearing could allow the
players to speak for the first
time since Benzema was
charged last month and placed
under judicial supervision. The
investigating judge has one
month to consider the request.
Preliminary charges under
French law mean magistrates
have strong reason to believe a
crime was committed, and
allow time for further investi-
gation. The charges may later
Benzema's lawyers said
Tuesday they filed the request
for the meeting but declined
to comment further.
In an interview with news-
paper Le Monde this month,
Vabuena spoke directly about
Benzema's attempts to pressure
him and said he felt betrayed
by his France teammate.
Valbuena said he was par-
ticularly shocked by the way
Benzema spoke about him over
the phone with one of the sus-
pected blackmailers, with Ben-
zema joking that Valbuena
would get "eaten by the pira-
Benzema, who denies
wrongdoing, acknowledged that
the tone of his conversation
was uncalled for and apologized
to Valbuena and his family.
Benzema's lawyers want meeting with Valbuena
Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo
fights for the ball against
Malmo's Kari Arnason during a
Champions League group A
football match between Real
Madrid and Malmo at the
Santiago Bernabeu stadium in
Madrid, yesterday. Real won 8-0.
'Not 1-man responsibility'
Bayer Leverkusen vs
Roma vs BATE Borisov
Dinamo Zagreb vs
Olympiacos vs Arsenal
Chelsea vs FC Porto
Dynamo Kyiv vs
Maccabi Tel Aviv
Gent vs Zenit St
Valencia vs Lyon
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