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UEFA Champions League 2016/17


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#1 Don Quixote

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Posted 13 July 2016 - 12:33 AM

I need to start the thread earlier this year. Why? Right now the Champions League is in the second round of the qualifying stages. Celtic - you know, Celtic, half of the Old Firm that dominates Scottish football, the first team outside Italy or the Iberian Peninsula to win the European Cup (in their epic 1966/67 season) - were starting their campaign, with new manager Brendan Rodgers readying for his first competitive match in charge, on the road to Lincoln Red Imps FC.

 

Who the hell are Lincoln Red Imps? They're the best team in the Gibraltar Premier Division (either a semi-professional league or amateur league, depending on who you ask) that gained the privilege of Champions League participation after the 2013 acceptance of Gibraltar into UEFA as its 54th member. They've won their league title 14 times running, and in 15 of the last 16 campaigns, part of 22 league titles overall (a record) in 32 seasons in the top flight. Their home is Victoria Stadium, the 5,000-seat artificial turf national stadium that's home to every football team in Gibraltar, including the national team for friendlies. (For competitive matches, the national team must play at the Estadio do Algarve in Faro, Portugal, a Euro 2004 stadium that otherwise stands dormant due to the inability of the two local football clubs to fill it; Victoria Stadium doesn't fulfill UEFA's requirements for competitive national team matches, but it features a nifty view of The Rock.)

 

As league champions of Gibraltar, Lincoln must begin from the first qualifying round. Their first participation in the Champions League, in 2014/15, met with immediate elimination, but for the second year running they have advanced to the second qualifying round, this season having defeated FC Flora Tallinn, Estonia's top squad. Celtic are by far the biggest club Lincoln Red Imps have faced.

 

By now, you know where this is going. On the strength of a customs officer, a fireman, a policeman, and a taxi driver, among others, Lincoln Red Imps defeated Celtic in the first leg, 1-0, and will travel to Glasgow's Celtic Park, which holds about twice the total population of Gibraltar, for the second leg, set to be played next Wednesday. Read more below.

 

BBC Match Report: http://www.bbc.com/s...otball/36761213

 

BBC Live As It Happened: http://www.bbc.com/s...otball/36775154 (Scroll down to get earlier updates.)

 

BBC Radio Scotland Sportsound (reaction): http://www.bbc.co.uk...rammes/p0418y16

 

Gibraltar's Victoria Stadium: http://footballtripp...dium-gibraltar/


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#2 Don Quixote

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Posted 20 July 2016 - 02:19 PM

In the return leg, Lincoln were able to keep it scoreless until about halfway through the first half, but Celtic are now beginning to pour it on, with goals at 23', 25', and 29' to take a 3-0 (3-1 agg) lead.

 

http://www.bbc.com/s...otball/36820619



#3 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 24 August 2016 - 08:11 AM

Sports Illustrated: Porto ousts 9-man Roma to reach UCL group stage

 

Sports Illustrated: Top four leagues set to get four UCL group berths apiece

 

Sports Illustrated: Champions League's downward spiral
 

 


 



#4 BSLSteveBirrer

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Posted 27 August 2016 - 10:59 AM

The groups are all set and Match Day 1 is September 13/14.  Get ready for the best soccer on the planet.

 

http://www.uefa.com/...ings/index.html

 

I'll try and do an analysis prior to Day 1 with how I see the groups shaking out.


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#5 BSLSteveBirrer

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Posted 13 September 2016 - 12:41 PM

Ok guys here's a link to a preview of the group stages. Starting in a little over an hour!!!

 

http://baltimorespor...ue-group-stage/


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#6 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 16 September 2016 - 05:33 PM

Sports Illustrated: Week 1 Champions League Power Rankings



#7 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 21 September 2016 - 08:39 PM

Sports Illustrated: Gulf in class evident for Barcelona, Bayern in UCL



#8 BSLSteveBirrer

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Posted 27 September 2016 - 09:42 AM

I'll be on a plane all day so won't get to see any CL play today but some good matches.  Dortmund is hosting Real Madrid. This should be a pretty interesting game. See how Christian Pulisic handles playing in a huge match against one of the top clubs in the world. And the top African player, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, is currently the striker for Dortmund and has openly said he'd like to play for Real Madrid someday. And likewise Real Madrid has him on the transfer radar so look for Aubameyang to go hard today.

 

http://www.goal.com/...en?ICID=SP_TS_6

 

 

This game is FS1. Monaco hosts Bayern Leverkusen on ESPN 2 and Moscow hosts Tottenham on FS2.  All those games are at 2:30 eastern.



#9 BSLSteveBirrer

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Posted 27 September 2016 - 09:44 AM

Here are the current standings heading in to today's matches.

 

http://www.goal.com/...?ICID=AR_TN_167



#10 BSLSteveBirrer

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Posted 27 September 2016 - 04:46 PM

Got to the airport in Atlanta and got to see the last 30 minutes of the Dortmund - Real Madrid game. Pulisic came on in the 70th or so minute and totally changed the complexion of the match. Dortmund was having their moments in attack but just lacking that one key pass or that one critical move to beat a man to make something big happen. On comes CP and what a spark. Ran some havoc down the right wing and beat a Real defender badly and made one of his sweet crosses to the foot of Schuerrle who hammered it home. Assist to CP and tie game 2-2.



#11 BSLSteveBirrer

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Posted 12 October 2016 - 10:08 AM

Big round in the CL next week as they reach the mid point of the group stage. The big one next week of course is Barcelona and Man City on Wednesday. Must watch for soccer fans!

 

Look for an article end of next week as I summarize what we have seen to the mid point of the group stage and what I expect to see in the last set of group stage matches as teams prepare to move on. And the usual caution - don't take anything I say to the bank or Vegas!!!



#12 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 18 October 2016 - 05:47 PM

NBC Sports / PST: Champions League roundup: Real, Leicester win; Pulisic goes 90 for Dortmund



#13 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 19 October 2016 - 05:02 PM

Goal.com: Barcelona 4 Manchester City 0

http://www.goal.com/.../2348342/report



#14 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 20 October 2016 - 08:37 AM

FOX Sports: 6 Champions League takeaways: Messi magical again; Celtic totally overmatched
http://www.foxsports...rmatched-101916



#15 BSLSteveBirrer

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Posted 22 October 2016 - 06:33 PM

As promised here's my mid Group Stage report.

 

http://baltimoresportsandlife.com/


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#16 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 01 November 2016 - 07:42 PM

ESPN: Man City rally to defeat Barcelona; Arsenal and PSG win with late goals
http://www.espnfc.us...with-late-goals



#17 BSLSteveBirrer

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Posted 02 November 2016 - 12:20 PM

The only real surprise yesterday was that Arsenal had to overcome a 2 goal deficit from powerhouse Ludogoretts.....lol



#18 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 23 November 2016 - 09:22 PM

Sports Illustrated: Barcelona, Atletico Madrid win their Champions League groups



#19 BSLSteveBirrer

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Posted 07 December 2016 - 12:29 PM

Last matches of group play today....biggest game being Dortmund and Real Madrid.....should be a really good game.



#20 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 07 December 2016 - 07:07 PM

Sports Illustrated: Dortmund stages group-winning comeback






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