💫 CL Awards: Double takes, painful exits, late rallies and pure swazz | OneFootball

💫 CL Awards: Double takes, painful exits, late rallies and pure swazz

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OneFootball

Dan Burke

We’re now just one matchday away from the end of the 2021/22 Champions League group stage and it was another eventful round of action.

Let’s hand out some awards.


The Dressed To Impress Award

They say you should dress for the job you want, not the job you have, and Manchester United interim manager appeared to have taken that adage onboard when selecting his touchline attire for Tuesday’s trip to Villarreal.

He’s got a 100% winning record as a manager and he sure looks the part. Give it Michael ’til the end of the season, we say.


The Up And Running Award

It was a memorable night for Jadon Sancho on Tuesday as he scored his first goal for Manchester United with a cracking finish to seal his side’s place in the round of 16.

We’ve got a feeling there will be plenty more where that came from.


The Tour de Force Award

After his stunning bicycle kick in Bayern Munich’s 2-1 win over Dynamo Kyiv, this photo should really be on the front of Robert Lewandowski’s Christmas cards this year.

All he wants for Christmas is the Ballon d’Or, and he’s been an extremely good boy this year.


The Annus Mirabilis Award

Speaking of people who’ve had a very good 2021, Thomas Tuchel hasn’t even been in the Chelsea job for a full 12 months yet but he’s already won the Champions League and got them playing some wonderful football.


The Winding The Clock Too Far Back Award

Barcelona are hoping for a return to the glory days of yesteryear with the appointment of Xavi as their new manager but Tuesday’s 0-0 draw with Benfica means they are now in danger of going a bit too far back in time.

That result means they must now win away at Bayern Munich on the final matchday if they are to avoid dropping into the Europa League next year.

The last time they played in that competition was 2004.

On the plus side, Barça have never won the Europa League or the UEFA Cup before it, so there’s always the chance to make a bit of history there.


The Oh Mate Award

How are we supposed to tell our unborn children that Benfica’s Haris Seferovic didn’t score from here?

In the last minute as well.


The Double Take Award

So-called because this mind-blowing stat had us rubbing our eyes and pinching ourselves to make sure we weren’t imagining it.

Fair play Gabriel.


The Cheeky Fan Award

Whatever you think of this modern trend of kids taking signs to matches asking players for their shirts, you can’t deny that this one brought an innovative new twist to the Etihad on Wednesday.

And unlike Paris Saint-Germain, it looks like they didn’t need Lionel Messi’s help.


The Late Rally Award

Before Tuesday RB Leipzig hadn’t won a game in the Champions League this season but now they’ve given themselves a good chance of finishing in third place in their group after thrashing Club Brugge.

And they did it without coach Jesse Marsch, who was self-isolating due to Covid.

We’ve heard of people being more productive while working from home but that’s ridiculous.


The Absolute Swazz Award

If you haven’t seen Thiago Alcântara’s delicious goal for Liverpool against Porto yet, be sure to feast your eyes on that a few times today.

Such a luxurious footballer.


The Hungry Eyes Award

Ajax striker Sebastian Haller has attacked his debut Champions League season in the same way we’ve been known to attack the McDonald’s menu at the end of a night out.

Let’s just hope he feels better than we do the morning after.


The Good News For The Europa League Award

Borussia Dortmund needed a win against Sporting CP on Wednesday to have any chance of advancing to the knockout stages but they lost, meaning they will be playing Europa League football in the new year.

It’s been a rough couple of weeks for Erling Haaland.

Never mind Erling, we hear Belgrade is lovely in February.


The That’s What It’s All About Award

If anyone ever tries to tell you there’s no romance in the Champions League, be sure to remind them of the heart-warming tale of AC Milan match-winner Junior Messias.


The European Royalty Award

The upset of the season so far was Sheriff’s shock victory over Real Madrid earlier in the group stage, but Los Blancos dusted themselves down and qualified for the knockout stages with a minimum of fuss in the end.

It’s not their first rodeo, that’s for sure.