Football Features

Aguero closes in on Drogba record: The Champions League action you might have missed

By CJ Smith

Published: 22:23, 22 October 2019

Tuesday night was jam-packed with action as the Champions League group stages took another step toward completion.

Atletico Madrid had to grind out a 1-0 win at home to Bundesliga side Bayer Leverkusen, while Shakhtar Donetsk and Dinamo Zagreb played out an entertaining 2-2 draw in the early kick-offs.

Another six games followed and to help catch you up with the best of the action, here is a round-up of what you may have missed from the 8pm kick-offs.

1. Lewandowski climbs the ladder

Robert Lewandowski is really, really good at scoring goals.

OK, we all knew that already. But on Tuesday, he bagged another brace in Bayern Munich’s entertaining 3-2 win over Olympiakos and it turned out to be quite a significant one for the Poland international.

His latest strikes took Lewandowski to 58 in the Champions League, moving him above Ruud van Nistelrooy and into the top-five all-time goalscorers in competition history.

Champions League top goalscorers

While there’s very little chance he’ll be catching the ridiculous benchmarks set by Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, there’s every chance Lewandowski can overtake Real Madrid icons Karim Benzema and Raul in the near future.

2. Aguero at the double

Speaking of climbing the ladder, Sergio Aguero has been busy chasing down some records himself.

The Argentine sensation stepped up with a double for Manchester City on Tuesday as Pep Guardiola’s men fought from a goal down to beat Atalanta 5-1 at the Etihad.

In doing so, he took himself to a total of 34 Champions League goals for City – the third-highest number of any player for an English club.

Next in Aguero’s sites are Van Nistelrooy and Thierry Henry on 35, then the ultimate big-game player, Didier Drogba on 36. Don’t be surprised if Aguero is the record-holder himself by the end of the group stages.

A special mention must also go to Raheem Sterling for his fantastic hat-trick on the night – the 24-year-old is the first Englishman to achieve that feat in the Champions League for Man City.

3. Pep’s injury list continues to grow

It wasn’t all singing and dancing for City on Tuesday.

Pep Guardiola has already had to deal with some pretty rotten luck with injuries throughout this still very short season so far, seeing the likes of Aymeric Laporte, Leroy Sane and John Stones all suffering at one point or another, and that’s barely scratching the surface.

Now, the City boss will have to add another name to his list as Spanish midfielder Rodri pulled up in the first half with what appeared to be a hamstring injury.

The ex-Atletico Madrid man was actually lining up alongside Fernandinho in that pseudo-centre-back role Guardiola deploys when short of numbers at the back, forcing Stones onto the pitch much earlier than the City medical staff would have liked.

With a six-point gap to make up on Liverpool in the Premier League, this is the last thing Guardiola needs right now.

4. King Kylian

Remember Kylian Mbappe? He recently went four games without a goal, so we just wanted to make sure you hadn’t forgotten the name.

Well, just in case, the French sensation reminded us all just how disgustingly talented he is by adding to his goal and assist in a seven-minute cameo against Nice at the weekend by adding another goal and another assist less than 10 minutes after coming on from the bench as PSG dismantled Club Brugge. That equates to two goals and two assists in just 18 minutes of football for Mbappe. Quite ridiculous.

Oh, and then there was just the small matter of that goal making him the youngest player to score 15 Champions League goals (20 years, 302 days), beating a certain Lionel Messi (21 years, 289 days) in the process…

…before rounding off a solid night’s work by completing his hat-trick, becoming the youngest substitute to do so in competition history. Stop it, Kylian!

5. Juventus survive scare in comeback win

Juventus have only won by more than two goals on one occasion this season – quite remarkable when you consider they’ve won eight of their 10 games so far. The Italian champions are being made to work far harder for their results than they’ve been used to in recent years.

That trend continued on Tuesday as the Old Lady had to come from 1-0 down at home to Lokomotiv Moscow to gain a narrow 2-1 win. Paulo Dybala was the hero on this occasion, scoring both goals.

The result just about keeps Juve top of Group D, only ahead of Atletico Madrid on goal difference, while they’re only one point ahead of Inter Milan in Serie A after eight games.

Maurizio Sarri is having to dig in for his new employers.