Champions League wrap: Barca, PSG, Chelsea register easy wins; Dortmund earns a draw

Barcelona beat Ferencvaros 3-0 while PSG thumped Manchester United 3-1 on an action-filled day in the Champions League on Wednesday.

Barcelona forward Antoine Griezmann   -  AFP

Barcelona out-classed Ferencvaros to ease its way to a 3-0 away win on Wednesday for a fifth consecutive Champions League win which took it to the brink of clinching top spot in its group.

Lionel Messi was rested and missed a second European trip in a row but Barca barely noticed its captain's absence as goals from Antoine Griezmann, Martin Braithwaite and a penalty from Ousmane Dembele gave it a three-goal lead before the break.

 

Ronald Koeman's side continued to dominate in the second half and Dembele missed three chances to add to the team's lead while Miralem Pjanic also came close.

Barca, which has already qualified for the knockout stages, leads Group G with a maximum 15 points. It hosts second-placed Juventus in its final game next week and will finish top if it avoids defeat.

Neymar scores twice as PSG beats Man United

Paris Saint-Germain star Neymar   -  Offside

 

Brazilian Neymar scored twice and his compatriot Fred was sent off as Paris St Germain beat 10-man Manchester United 3-1 at Old Trafford to throw Champions League Group H wide open.

United, PSG and RB Leipzig are all on nine points heading into next week's final round of games in which the English side goes to the German club and the French champion hosts Istanbul Basaksehir.

Neymar fired PSG into a sixth-minute lead after a Kylian Mbappe shot was deflected and fell kindly to the former Barcelona forward who drilled the ball into the bottom corner.

United drew level in the 32nd minute through a Marcus Rashford shot which deflected off the outstretched leg of Danilo to beat PSG keeper Keylor Navas.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side created several good chances after the break with Edinson Cavani hitting the bar but PSG grabbed the win when Marquinhos poked home in the 69th minute after a drive into the box had been diverted to him by Abdou Diallo.

United's difficulties intensified when, a minute later, midfielder Fred was sent off for a second yellow card and Neymar added the third in stoppage time after a counter-attack.

Dortmund draw 1-1 against Lazio

Borussia Dortmund striker Erling Haaland has been ruled out until 2021   -  Borussia Dortmund

 

Borussia Dortmund overcame the absence of injured top scorer Erling Haaland to draw 1-1 with Lazio in Champions League Group F on Wednesday and advance to the knockout stages with a game to spare.

The 20-year-old Haaland, who has scored 16 goals in 12 Champions League appearances, was surprisingly not in Dortmund's starting lineup and his coach Lucien Favre said a muscle injury would sideline the Norwegian until January.

The Germans scored in the 44th minute with their first big chance, Raphael Guerreiro prodding in after a quick passing move split open the Italian defence. Lazio's Ciro Immobile levelled with a 67th-minute penalty.

Dortmund is on 10 points with second-placed Lazio on nine and needing at least a point in its final game against Club Brugge, which has seven after beating last-placed Zenit St Petersburg.

Giroud stars in thumping Chelsea win

Olivier Giroud had a night to remember against Sevilla   -  Getty Images

 

Striker Olivier Giroud scored four as a dominant Chelsea won 4-0 at Sevilla to secure top spot in Champions League Group E with a match to spare.

The result left Chelsea with 13 points from five games, three ahead of second-placed Sevilla with a better head-to-head record against the Spanish side after their 0-0 draw at Stamford Bridge in the reverse fixture.

Giroud opened his account in the eighth minute with a left-footed finish from 10 metres after a darting run through the middle by Kai Havertz, with Chelsea missing two more chances in a lop-sided first half.

Ronaldo scores 750th goal in first Champions League with female referee  

There was more one-way traffic after the break as Giroud doubled the lead in the 54th minute, beating goalkeeper Alfonso Pastor with a dinked right-footed finish having side-stepped a defender after Mateo Kovacic's clever pass.

He made it 3-0 with a thumping 74th-minute header from substitute N'Golo Kante's inch-perfect cross and then put the icing on the cake with an 83rd-minute penalty after he was fouled by Sergi Gomez.

In the group's other fixture played earlier on Wednesday, Russian side Krasnodar secured a berth in the Europa League last 32 with a 1-0 home win over French rival Stade Rennais.

Club Brugge keep up hopes of Champions League progress

Belgium's Club Brugge kept alive its hopes of advancing in the Champions League when a convincing 3-0 home win over Zenit St Petersburg on Wednesday set up a shootout for a place in the last 16 against Lazio next week.

Charles De Ketelaere opened the scoring after 33 minutes and won his team a second-half penalty, converted by Hans Vanaken in the 58th minute.

 

Noa Lang added a third goal in the 72nd minute after being set up by Nigerian striker Emmanuel Dennis.

The win takes Brugge to seven points in the Group F standings, two behind second-placed Lazio, which drew 1-1 at leader Borussia Dortmund.

Brugge would have to beat Lazio away next Tuesday if it is to advance to the knockout phase. Any other result will mean it finishes third and drop to the Europa League.

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