Cristiano Ronaldo scored twice from the penalty spot as Juventus humiliated Barcelona 3-0 at the Camp Nou in their final match of the UEFA Champions League (UCL) group stage.
In the first meeting between Ronaldo and Lionel Messi — since the former left Real Madrid in 2018 — it was the 35-year-old Portuguese forward who came top in this “battle of the greatest” with two penalty kicks converted while Messi was nullified by a combination of saves and blocked shots.
Barcelona had won the reverse fixture 2-0 at Turin but fell behind in the 13th minute when Ronaldo was fouled in the box and the forward dusted himself up to convert the spot-kick.
It was 2-0 after 20 minutes when Weston McKennie brilliantly converted Juan Caudrado’s cross, and Juventus held firm to deny Messi any joy in front of goal despite three shots on target and two blocked shots.
Ronaldo made it 3-0 in the 52nd minute with his second spot-kick awarded by the video assistant referee (VAR) for a handball by Christian Lenglet, a Barcelona defender.
Ronaldo placed his shot into the bottom left corner for his 14th goal in 13 games at the Camp Nou, while he also became the first player in the UCL to score two penalties against Barcelona in the same match.
Juventus’ victory ensured they snatched top spot ahead of Barcelona due to a superior head-to-head record after both teams finished on 15 points.
…Manchester United eliminated by RB Leipzig
RB Leipzig held firm to win 3-2 against a sleepy Manchester United that only woke up in the second half, eliminating the Red Devils from the continent’s premier football competition and into the Europa League.
Man United failed to advance to the knockout phase of the UCL for the first time since a similar debacle in 2015.
The German Bundesliga side went 3-0 up before Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men rallied to score two late goals but could not complete the task in a match they needed not to lose in order to ensure qualification into the UCL knockout phase.
Julian Nagelsmann’s side scored twice in the first 13 minutes for a 2-0 lead, and they extended that lead in the 68th minute after Justin Kluivert pounced on a defensive miscommunication between Harry Maguire and David de Gea.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s Man United staged a comeback with 10 minutes left. Bruno Fernandes converted a penalty in the 80th minute while Paul Pogba added a headed goal two minutes later for 3-2.
The 2008 UCL winners tried to snatch a late draw but crashed out at the group stage.
- Lazio 2-2 Club Bruges
- Zenit St Petersburg 1-2 Borussia Dortmund
- Chelsea 1-1 FK Krasnodar
- Rennes 1-3 Sevilla
- Barcelona 0-3 Juventus
- Dynamo Kyiv 1-0 Ferencvárosi TC
- RB Leipzig 3-2 Man Utd