Matchday 5 of the UEFA Champions League is done, and eleven of the 16 to advance to the knockout stages have already been confirmed. Ajax*, Juventus, Liverpool*, Bayern Munich*, Manchester United*, Chelsea, Manchester City*, Paris Saint-Germain, Sporting CP, Real Madrid, Inter Milan are all through (*confirmed as Group Winner). That meant we saw plenty of action including Cristiano Ronaldo scoring a crucial goal and Borussia Dortmund relegated to the Europa League. Oh and FC Porto are in 2nd in Group B, but only by a point, ahead of AC Milan and Atletico Madrid. Should make for a fun matchday 6.
Here, then, are the best stats of the past two days of high-octane Champions League football.
With the 2-0 win over Villarreal, Michael Carrick became the first English manager to win his first game in charge of Manchester United (excluding second spells) since Walter Crickmer in November 1931.
Sebastien Haller is the first player in UCL history to score 9+ goals in his first 5 UCL appearances. Overall, Haller is the 4th player to score in his first 5 career UCL games after Erling Haaland, Diego Costa and Alessandro Del Piero.
Haller’s been in some form. In fact, he has already tied Jari Litmanen (1995-96 vintage) for the most goals in a single UCL campaign by an Ajax player. He also has one more matchday to join Cristiano Ronaldo, Robert Lewandowski and Lionel Messi as the only players to score 10 goals in a CL group stage under the current format.
Chelsea have had three different English goalscorers in a single UCL match for the very first time. It is only the 3rd time in UCL history that 3 different English players have scored in the same game, after Manchester United vs. Brondby in 1998 (David Beckham, Andy Cole, Gary Neville, Paul Scholes) and Manchester United vs. Roma in 2007 (Michael Carrick, Alan Smith, Wayne Rooney).
More Haller love. Haller, Ronaldo and Lewandowski are the only players to score in all 5 UCL Group Stage games this season. Additional trivia — only one person has scored in all 6 UCL group stage games of a single season… Cristiano Ronaldo.
Liverpool have scored more goals from outside the box this UCL season than any other side (5); all 5 goals coming from different players: Jordan Henderson, Roberto Firmino, Mohamed Salah, Naby Keita and Thiago.
Lewandowski is the only player in UCL history with multiple 9-game scoring streaks. (This season, obviously, and between 2019 and 2020).
Wednesday’s win over PSG was Pep Guardiola’s 13th win over teams managed by Mauricio Pochettino, his most wins vs. a single manager in his career.
Bayern Munich have won its UCL group in 18 of their 25 appearances in the competition. Only Barcelona (21) have won its group more times than Bayern.
Manchester United will be making their 19th appearance in the UCL KO Stage, 4th most all-time (after Real Madrid, Bayern and Barcelona).
Bayern are on some roll now. Their 21-game away unbeaten streak is the longest in UCL history.
Real Madrid advances to the UCL knockout stage for the 25th consecutive season (since 1997-98). No other club has advanced to the knockout stage 25 times overall.
Real Madrid’s win today was its 100th UCL win in the Group Stages, making it the first team to reach the mark.
MESSI RONALDO WATCH
Another Champions League matchday, another Lionel Messi brace, another Cristiano Ronaldo record. They’ve made it all so… routine.
Cristiano Ronaldo has scored 3 game-winning goals in the last 15 minutes of regulation this season, that is the most such goals in a single season in UCL history.
He has also scored 4 result-changing goals in 5 UCL games this season. His goals have accounted for 7 points for Manchester United this UCL season.
Ronaldo is the first player to score in each of an English club’s first five matches of a single European Cup/Champions League season.
140 and 799
Cristiano Ronaldo has now scored 140 goals in 181 UCL appearances (!). He is one goal shy of 800 goals for club and country at the senior level (!!).
(Stats courtesy ESPN’s Stats & Information Group)