There’s no denying that if you love goals this years UEFA Champions League is the place to be, as Tuesday showcased a crazy 40 goals across the eight matches played. Unfortunately, most of those goals were scored as three teams reminded their groups who’s boss.
Speaking of that, with the scores going final on Tuesday Groups E through H have completed the first half of Champions League group play. For the four groups at the midway point it means reassessing where they are at and what could be in store for the final stretch run.
For some teams qualification for the Round of 16 is nearly complete, while other groups are a bit of a mess.
Who will go on to the Round of 16? What groups will give us the most entertainment? Let’s take stock of the first four groups to reach the midway point of the 2014-15 Champions League.
This was supposed to be one of the most difficult groups to figure out, with some pointing to a group with Bayern Munich, AS Roma, Manchester City and CSKA Moscow as the “group of death.” Fast forward three games and this is far from the group we thought we’d see.
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Bayern Munich has virtually run away with the group, winning all three of its matches so far. Behind them is an absolute jumbled up mess though, a mess created by three teams who have been destroyed by Bayern Munich. The German giants have gotten it done by living it up on the road to date, with eight goals scored and one goal given up.
The team in the No. 2 position, AS Roma, knows all about goals and its the reason they are in the position they are in. In its opener against
1. Bayern Munich – 14 points
2. Manchester City – 7 points
3. AS Roma – 7 points
4. CSKA Moscow – 3 points
It’s clear that Bayern Munich is going to win this group, the only question is by how much and if they can run the table in doing so. The bigger question is who comes out on the winning end of the mess that’s the other three teams.
For me, the difference maker is that Manchester City will host two home games and go on the road just once in the final half of the group stage. The challenge will be finding a way to get at least a point from the home game with Munich and the road contest with Roma in the second half, but if the blue half of Manchester can replicate its EPL play in the UCL that shouldn’t be a problem.
Roma may be in trouble with its lone home contest in the second half being against Manchester City. That factor gives me more hope that City wins out on goal differential.
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