Champions League Matchday 4 briefing: what you need to know
The UEFA Champions League continues apace on Matchday 4; here’s what they are all talking about.
What are the big games this week?
Tuesday: Chelsea v Ajax
In ten words: Chelsea and Ajax have chance to issue statement of intent
- These teams were likely favourites to progress when the draw was made and though they currently occupy the two Group H qualifying berths, both know defeat at this stage could leave them on the back foot. Chelsea won 1-0 in Amsterdam – Frank Lampard’s “most satisfying win so far” – and have lost just one of their last 18 UEFA competition fixtures. Last season’s semi-finalists will have their work cut out in west London.
Tuesday: Zenit v Leipzig
In ten words: Zenit look to reverse defeat to stay among leading pack
- Zenit were top of Group G heading into Matchday 3 but could find themselves well off the pace should they fail to bounce back from their 2-1 loss in Leipzig. The Russian side will pursue a reversal of fortunes on home soil in order to keep competitive in a section also featuring Lyon and Benfica.
Wednesday: Paris v Club Brugge
In ten words: Paris know victory will secure place in round of 16
- Paris had a chance to become the first team in UEFA Champions League history to qualify inside three games; while they fulfilled their part of the Group A bargain, their path was temporarily blocked because of Real Madrid’s win at Galatasaray. This time, though, the runaway Ligue 1 leaders know victory will send them through. The odds are in their favour, too, given they prevailed 5-0 in Belgium and have won 17 of their last 22 group stage home games.
Wednesday: Dinamo Zagreb v Shakhtar
In ten words: Dinamo and Shakhtar vie to lead chasing pack behind City
- Manchester City have three wins from three and will be through to the last 16 if they beat Atalanta on Matchday 4. That seems likely to leave just one Group C qualifying berth to play for; and this fixture could play a key role in deciding who takes it. The 2-2 draw in Kharkiv last time out suggests the two teams – locked together on four points apiece – are evenly matched.
Pre-Matchday 4 to-do list