The main talking point from Tuesday in the Champions League is the controversy in VAR surrounding a huge win for Inter Milan over Barca.
The return to the UEFA Champions League brought dramatic results on October 4. Italian clubs picked up big, and pivotal, wins. Meanwhile, Spanish sides floundered on the road. While there were great goals scored, some clubs hit the halfway point in the group stage with more questions than answers.
VAR controversy between Inter and Barca
Despite Barcelona having 71% possession and more shots, Inter Milan came away with the points in Italy. Hakan Calhanoglu scored the only goal in the match. The Turkey international hit a wonderful strike from outside of the box just before the halftime break.
Barca thought they had the equalizer in the 67th minute. Pedri took advantage of some shaky defending inside the box and put the ball into the open net. However, a VAR review showed Ansu Fati handled the ball just a few seconds before the strike.
Later, in stoppage time, Barcelona thought they won a penalty on a handball. However, the fourth official did not send the referee to the video board to review the call. Replays show contact between the ball and Inter’s Denzel Dumfries’s hand. According to CBS’s on-site reporter Guillem Balagué, officials deemed the ball came off Ansu Fati’s hand, not Dumfries’s. Regardless, no penalty was given and Inter held on to the 1-0 win at home.
Elsewhere in Group C, Bayern Munich continued its impressive Champions League run despite the side’s relatively disappointing domestic form. The German giants thumped visitors Viktoria Plzen 5-0 on the night. Positive COVID-19 tests kept both Thomas Müller and Joshua Kimmich from the match. Bayern, however, still provided the adequate firepower.
Leroy Sané started the scoring inside eight minutes with a beautiful rocket from outside of the box. It was his first of two goals on Tuesday. Serge Gnabry then doubled Bayern’s lead with his first goal in eight club games. Former Liverpool star Sadio Mane and Eric Choupo-Moting also put their names on the scoresheet as well.
Napoli crushed Ajax 6-1 away from home to keep their unbeaten season intact. The Italian club has now scored at least three goals in all UCL group stage matches during the current campaign.
Giacomo Raspadori ran the show, but Napoli also got goals from four other players. Perhaps the only negative on the night was the fact that Khvicha Kvaratskhelia had to be substituted because of injury after scoring his goal.Liverpool bounced back with a 2-0 win against Rangers after their disappointing draw at home to Brighton at the weekend. Trent Alexander-Arnold, a player under pressure as of late, opened the scoring with a free kick goal inside seven minutes.
PHOTO: IMAGO / Gribaudi/ImagePhoto
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