GENEVA (AP) — Barcelona were knocked out of the Champions League on Wednesday before they even suffered another 3-0 loss to Bayern Munich.
Atlético Madrid are also out following an extraordinary streak around a video-reviewed penalty after the final whistle of their 2-2 draw with Bayer Leverkusen.
Atlético’s spot-kick was saved before a frantic run into the goalmouth still couldn’t deliver the winning goal the Spanish club needed to stop Porto advancing with their 4-0 win over early against group leaders Club Brugge.
Two Spanish powerhouses who were part of last year’s failed Super League launch will now miss the knockout stages of Europe’s top competition.
Liverpool’s move into the knockout stage with one game to spare was relatively quiet in a 3-0 win at Ajax to join leaders Napoli in the Group A progression, who have scored 44 goals in 10 matches.
In more stoppage time drama with video review, Tottenham thought they had won Group D when Harry Kane fired the ball into Sporting Lisbon’s net with seconds remaining in a game that was tied 1-1.
A lengthy VAR check concluded Kane was offside, furious Tottenham manager Antonio Conte was shown a red card, and the better-balanced group will advance to the final round next week, with all four teams given a chance to win. ‘to advance.
Group leaders Tottenham play last Tuesday at Marseille, while Eintracht Frankfurt – who beat Marseille 2-1 on Wednesday – travel to Sporting.
The heavyweight encounter in Barcelona lost all meaning before kick-off, when the five-time European champion’s hopes of progress were dashed by Inter Milan’s 4-0 victory over Viktoria Plzeň in the from one of the first games.
Barcelona needed Inter to drop points and still needed to beat Bayern, who also beat the Spanish side 3-0 in two group games last season and won 2-0 at home in September.
The result was clear after Sadio Mané scored in the 10th minute. Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting doubled the lead before halftime and Benjamin Pavard added a third in stoppage time.
Barcelona, even after signing former Bayern star Robert Lewandowski, have not reached the knockout stages in consecutive seasons since Lionel Messi left in August 2021 for Paris Saint-Germain.
Bayern and Napoli are the only sides to win five straight in this group stage, and the Italian side’s 3-0 win over Rangers took their tally of goals to 20.
Atlético had to beat Leverkusen and earned a corner kick at the end of added time to tie 2-2. The danger was averted and the final whistle sounded before video review assistants spotted a handball.
French referee Clément Turpin checked his screen on the halfway line and awarded the penalty, but Belgium midfielder Yannick Carrasco’s effort was denied by goalkeeper Lukas Hradecky. The ball then looped for Atlético’s Saúl Ñíguez to hit the crossbar. This in turn pushed Reinildo for a shot that looked goal bound but hit Carrasco’s ankle and bounced off the goal safely.
Atlético, who lost in the final in 2014 and 2016, can only hope to clinch third place against Leverkusen in Group B and take part in the Europa League qualifiers in February.
NOT TOO GREAT
On Tuesday, Juventus were eliminated. A day later it was Barcelona’s turn. Two of the three rebel clubs still backing the failed Super League project have already been kicked out of the Champions League.
The embarrassment on the pitch is also a blow to Juventus and Barcelona, who have each recorded record losses this year.
The two missed several million euros (dollars) in result bonuses offered in the group stage and will not get the 9.6 million euros (9.7 million dollars) in prize money that UEFA awards to the clubs that reach the round of 16.
Barcelona, unlike Juventus, are at least sure to move to the Europa League in February. It’s worth 500,000 euros ($504,000) with seven-figure payouts to advance further.
In their legal challenge against UEFA, Super League holders Barcelona, Juventus and Real Madrid will receive a first non-binding opinion from the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg on December 15.
Romelu Lukaku is back and scoring for Inter Milan after a two-month absence with a hamstring injury.
The Belgian striker came on late in the game against Pilsen, exchanged passes with Joaquín Correa and shot with a left foot.
“I have never seen so much love from a team for a single player,” said Inter goalkeeper André Onana. “And he scored, we’re all happy for him.”
The Porto goalkeeper Diogo Costa has now saved penalties in three consecutive Champions League appearances.
It was four straight saves, in fact, as Costa had to stop two attempts from Club Brugge in Porto’s 4-0 win.
The goalkeeper, who wears the No.99 shirt, first dove to his right to save Hans Vanaken’s attempt, which was ordered to be retaken due to an encroachment in the penalty area. Noah Lang came forward for the rebound and Costa also saved the one diving to his left.
Costa, who is set to go to the World Cup as Portugal’s No.1, also saved penalties in home and away wins over Bayer Leverkusen, from Patrik Schick and Kerem Demirbay.
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