UCL Watch: Top Games To Watch From UCL Matchday 1

UCL Watch: Top Games To Watch From UCL Matchday 1

  • UCL
  • September 8, 2022
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The iconic anthem was beamed across television sets across the world on Tuesday night as the UCL kicked off for this season. The big guns were firing as Mbappe and Haaland got themselves a brace each, while the veteran Lewandowski did one better and got an opening day hat trick. It was fireworks all around, and we were all reminded of why we love this beautiful tournament.

Here are the 3 must-watch games in case you missed out on this week’s action:

Also read: ‘Earthquake Style’: Spalletti’s Napoli Serve Liverpool Reality Check On A Memorable Night In Naples

PSG 2-1 Juventus

Arguably the most prominent fixture of the matchday. Two of Europe’s heavyweights going at it. A tight, tense affair that ultimately highlighted the fallacies of each side. PSG came hot out of the gates taking the game to the Italians as the trident of Messi, Mbappe, and Neymar got the tricks and flicks out.

Only 5 minutes in, the formerly feuding duo of Neymar and Mbappe combined to send the Parc de Princes into raptures. A beautiful dinked ball over the Italian defence for Mbappe to put in the back of the net with a sumptuous first-time volley. 15 minutes in, Mbappe got onto the scoresheet again, scoring another volley. This time it was Hakimi who played a nice pass to the Frenchman, who was wheeling away as soon as the ball went off his laces.

Sergio Ramos also had a great night. After missing most of the last two years through injury, he has rolled back the years and is back to playing some brilliant football. He did pick up his customary yellow card for getting into a tussle with Paredes, but apart from that, he was brilliant. The highlight of the game would have to be his nonchalant back-heel goal-line clearance.

But for all the flair, brilliance, and creativity that PSG displayed, they also showed their frailties when Juve pulled one back. They went into their shell, dropped back, and defended their lead. They let Juve back into the game; on another night, Juve could have scored the equalizer.

Dinamo Zagreb 1-0 Chelsea

Well, that didn’t go to plan. Tuchel’s 100th and final game in charge for Chelsea- a p*ss poor performance as the Croatian club recorded a famous win over the Blues. The debutant on the night Aubameyang lasted less than an hour, where he managed a grand total of 0 shots. Tactically Tuchel was a mess in this game. Mason Mount was deployed in a deeper role where he was bypassed time and time again. Sterling played a central position where he couldn’t really affect the game.

The game’s only goal came early as Chelsea’s high line was exploited by a Zagreb fast break. Petkovic cleverly nodded the ball on for Orsic, who chested the ball down and zoomed past Chelsea’s £70m signing Fofana. He then cutely jinked the ball past a hapless Kepa, who could only watch on as the ball rolled over the goal line.

Zagreb keeper Livakovic did have to make a few saves but did well to keep his clean sheet. Reece James also hit the post as Chelsea pushed for a late equalizer but too little too late as the Blues couldn’t get the breakthrough.

Napoli 4-1 Liverpool

The season’s biggest shock must be the battering Liverpool was handed at the Diego Maradona Stadium. This team was a shadow of the side that has made it to 3 of the last 5 UCL finals. Ripped apart and outclassed in every aspect of the game, ending in one of Liverpool’s heaviest defeats on the European stage. When Klopp comes out and apologizes for the performance, you know something really went wrong.

Just 30 minutes into the game, they were already 2-0 down in spite of having a penalty saved, Napoli hitting the post, and having a shot cleared off the line. It’s weird to say, but 4-1 actually flatters Liverpool, who were absolutely dreadful.

This was the game Khvicha Kvaratskhelia announced himself to the world. Nicknamed “Kvaradona”, he lived up to the moniker. Playing down the left, he had Trent and Gomez in his back pocket, skinning them time and time again. He took people on, beat them, and played fearlessly. His assist for Simone was a work of art, something I would highly recommend you to have a look at.

Apart from the defence, Salah once again was off-colour. He failed to control basic passes and was invisible throughout the game. Milner is too old and is exposed every time he plays now. A night to forget for every Reds fan. I think the players and manager need to have a look in the mirror and pick themselves up and turn it around.

Also read: UCL Predictions: Groups C and D

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