Author Topic: UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE : CITY hold on  (Read 976 times)

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Offline Prince james C. Inyogu

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Manchester City were all but
eliminated from the Champions
League despite producing a
stirring fightback against Ajax
to draw 2-2. - Jolly: City cornered
- Blog: 'Flinterdun' for City
- Real's tale of two halves
- Blog: Arsenal disappointment Yaya Toure and Sergio Aguero
struck as City fought back
from 2-0 down but the
Premier League champions
were forced to settle for a
draw and remain winless in Group D despite a frantic
finish. Siem de Jong, who scored in
the Dutch side's defeat of City
in Amsterdam a fortnight ago,
found the net twice for the
visitors inside the opening 17
minutes at the Etihad Stadium. The result left City with just
two points from four games
and needing two victories and
other results to go their way
to claim a place in the
knockout stages. At the Bernabeu, Mesut Ozil's
89th-minute free-kick rescued
a point for Real Madrid from a
pulsating 2-2 draw with
Borussia Dortmund to keep
both sides on course to qualify from Champions League Group
D. Marco Reus had deservedly
put the German champions in
front on 28 minutes with a
spectacular volley from Robert
Lewandowski's knockdown, but
Pepe levelled for the hosts six minutes later with a bullet
header from Ozil's cross. The visitors went back in front
seconds before the break
thanks to Mario Gotze's chip
over Iker Casillas that found
the net via a deflection off
Alvaro Arbeloa, but Madrid were much improved after
half-time and finally got level
thanks to Ozil's perfectly
placed free-kick. The draw leaves Dortmund on
top of the group with eight
points from four games with
Real in second on seven, three
points clear of Ajax in third. Elsewhere, Arsenal squandered
a two-goal lead to draw 2-2 in
Germany as Schalke denied
Arsene Wenger victory on his
return from a touchline ban. The Frenchman has been
forced to watch the first
three Group B fixtures from
the stands, including the
surprise 2-0 defeat at the
hands of the Bundesliga outfit a fortnight ago. Having held off Schalke's
intense early pressure, Theo
Walcott netted his 50th goal
for Arsenal against the run of
play in the 18th minute after
Olivier Giroud was dispossessed in the box. The France international got in
on the action eight minutes
later with a superb diving
header, but Klaas-Jan
Huntelaar reduced the deficit
in first half stoppage time. Arsenal were pinned back as
Schalke poured forward in
search of an equaliser and,
despite goalkeeper Vito
Mannone's best efforts, it
came when Jefferson Farfan fired home via a Thomas
Vermaelen deflection. Olympiakos put themselves
back in the hunt for a spot in
the last 16 of the Champions
League with a second
successive victory over
Montpellier. Olympiakos left it late before
snatching a 3-1 victory with
two goals in the last 10
minutes from Leandro Greco
and Kostas Mitroglou. Those strikes came after
Younes Belhanda's second-half
penalty for Montpelier had
cancelled out Paulo Machado's
early opener for the the
Greek side. Olympiakos had lost their
opening two matches in Group
B but that result lifts them
onto six points, two points
behind leaders Schalke and
one adrift of second-placed Arsenal. Montpellier, meanwhile, remain
on one point and all but out of
contention for a top-two
berth. Alexandre Pato denied Malaga
the chance to seal progression
to the last 16 of the
Champions League at the San
Siro, as the Brazilian striker
kept AC Milan within touching distance of qualification in a
1-1 draw. Malaga's perfect debut season
on Europe's biggest stage
looked set to continue
unchecked as Eliseu's first-half
goal put the Spaniards on the
verge of wrapping up top spot in Group C. But Pato capitalised on fine
work from Kevin Constant to
register his first Milan goal
since December last year -
spoiling Malaga's clean sheet in
the competition - to book second place ahead of
Anderlecht, who are one point
behind the Serie A giants. In the other game Dieumerci
Mbokani's first-half goal kept
Anderlecht's Champions League
hopes alive as they finally
earned their first win in Group
C, 1-0 against Zenit St Petersburg. Defeat in Russia two weeks
ago had left the Belgian
champions bottom of the
group and needing victory at
the Stadium Constant Vanden
Stock to have any realistic chance of reaching the last 16. And Mbokani's neat finish
coupled with a solid defensive
showing lifted them ahead of
their opponents to third in the
standings, a point behind
second-placed AC Milan after the Italians drew with Malaga. Porto lost their 100% record
but booked their place in the
knockout stages of the
Champions League after a
goalless Group A draw against
Dynamo Kiev in Ukraine. Porto's point takes them to 10
points in the group and
guarantees their progress
after a game of few clear-cut
chances which leaves the
hosts with little chance of progressing. Finally Zlatan Ibrahimovic had a
hand in all four goals as Paris
St Germain thrashed
Champions League whipping
boys Dinamo Zagreb 4-0. PSG took the lead after 16
minutes when Ibrahimovic
produced a perfect cross from
the right for Alex to turn the
ball home from 12 yards. Ibrahimovic was again the
provider with a pass from the
left that Blaise Matuidi slotted
into the back of the net, a
move which was repeated five
minutes later for Menez to this time benefit from his
Swedish team-mate's supply to
make it 3-0. Yet another Ibrahimovic assist
saw Guillaume Hoarau complete
the rout 20 minutes from time
as PSG moved onto nine
points, one behind Group a
leaders Porto.
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