Champions League

Champions League

Arsenal 2-0 Napoli: Arsenal win the game early by attacking down the right flank

October 1, 2013
Arsenal 2-0 Napoli: Arsenal win the game early by attacking down the right flank

Arsene Wenger fielded five natural central midfielders, but Napoli were opened up repeatedly in their left-back zone. Wenger was without a variety of players comfortable in wide roles – Theo Walcott, Santi Cazorla, Lukas Podolski and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain – while Jack Wilshere was rested, with Mikel Arteta coming into the side and Arsenal’s three attacking...
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Napoli 2-1 Dortmund: Higuain & Insigne exploit Dortmund’s failure to heed their warnings

September 18, 2013
Napoli 2-1 Dortmund: Higuain & Insigne exploit Dortmund’s failure to heed their warnings

Gonzalo Higuain and Lorenzo Insigne scored the goals from set-piece situations – but they had been the most threatening players in open play, too. Rafael Benitez’s line-up was as expected, with Insigne’s role on the left probably the biggest news on the teamsheet. Jurgen Klopp is without long-term absentee Lukasz Piszczek at right-back, and the excellent...
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Real Sociedad 0-2 Shakhtar Donetsk: Sociedad start excellently but Shakhtar more ruthless

September 17, 2013
Real Sociedad 0-2 Shakhtar Donetsk: Sociedad start excellently but Shakhtar more ruthless

Alex Teixeira was barely noticeable for long periods – but struck twice to give Shakhtar three crucial points in a tough group. Jagoba Arrasate named Haris Seferovic upfront having used Carlos Vela there at the weekend. The Mexican returned to the right flank, while Imanol Agirretxe – first-choice centre-forward last season – wasn’t yet fit enough...
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Bayern Munich 2-1 Borussia Dortmund: Dortmund take control with good pressing, but Robben moves upfront to make the difference

May 26, 2013
Bayern Munich 2-1 Borussia Dortmund: Dortmund take control with good pressing, but Robben moves upfront to make the difference

Bayern initially struggled to get into the game, but eventually emerged victorious after a strong second half performance. Jupp Heynckes selected Jerome Boateng rather than Daniel van Buyten at the back – the only real selection decision either manager had to make. Jurgen Klopp named his expected XI. Dortmund started the game excellently, pinning Bayern back and...
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Barcelona 0-3 Bayern: Bayern untroubled at the back & consistently dangerous down the flanks

May 1, 2013
Barcelona 0-3 Bayern: Bayern untroubled at the back & consistently dangerous down the flanks

Bayern produced another highly impressive performance to qualify for the Champions League final with ease. Tito Vilanova decided not to risk the half-fit Lionel Messi, so Cesc Fabregas played as the false nine. David Villa replaced Alexis Sanchez, while Alex Song was in for the injured Sergio Busquets, and Adriano for the suspended Jordi Alba. Jupp...
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