After it’s long awaited return, the first matchday of the new Champions League has come and gone in a flash, leaving us all feeling a little bit empty.
Fear not, however, because we are set to dissect the events of the first round of fixtures from Europe’s most illustrious club competition in detail.
Let’s get started…
6. Marouane Fellaini Is No Longer a Laughing Stock
Since signing for the club during the banter era of David Moyes’ reign, Fellaini has always been associated with the failure of the Scot due to the fact he was Moyes’ first signing at Old Trafford.
However, since Jose Mourinho took the reigns in Manchester, Fellaini has become an effective weapon for the Portuguese to use off the bench and from the start when required, with the former Chelsea boss even declaring he feels ‘weaker’ without the Belgian.
Fellaini has gone from being booed by his own fans to becoming a vital asset for United, and so long as he keeps his elbows to himself, he may just be on the way to turning his Red Devils career around.
5. This Could Be Manchester City’s Year in Europe
It could be argued that the credibility of City’s 4-0 win may be questionable based on the quality of the opposition in Feyenoord, although the manner of the performance was far from flattering.
Pep Guardiola’s system, in which his full backs are expected to operate higher up the pitch, was in full flow on Wednesday night as Benjamin Mendy and Kyle Walker ran amok; the latter recording an assist for Sergio Aguero. The Citizens put the Dutch champions to the sword, showing their true Champions League credentials in the process.
We’re not getting carried away, although the strength in depth and individual quality in this City team is staggeringly impressive, and you wouldn’t bet against them going all the way this year.
4. Gianluigi Buffon Proves He Is Human After Finally Conceding to Lionel Messi
The Italian legend lost one of his most respected records on Wednesday night, as he finally succumbed to conceding a goal from Lionel Messi.
The four time Ballon d’Or winner put two goals past the Italian record cap holder in the Nou Camp as Barcelona won 3-0, and in doing so, proved Buffon really is human after all – even if the Argentine’s extra terrestrial abilities remain up for debate.
3. A New Star Trio Is Emerging Out of Paris
After witnessing the scintillating attacking abilities of Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar in the Nou Camp in recent years, you’d be forgiven for thinking that there’ll never be another trio like them.
On the other hand, the arrivals of Kylian Mbappe and Neymar in Paris this summer have put the issue back up for debate, as their partnership with existing Parisian Edinson Cavani has been deadly of late.
Since teaming up, the trio have scored nine goals in two games and always seem to be on the end of each other’s supply line, although they still have some way to go before reaching the heights of Barcelona’s old South American frontline.
2. Harry Kane Is Proving Himself as One of Europe’s Top Forwards
Left foot, right foot, head, you name it, Harry Kane can score with it. The Englishman is truly proving himself as one of Europe’s most efficient strikers, and has no doubt put to bed the silly ‘one season wonder’ tag so often associated with him in the past.
Kane notched twice on Wednesday night against Borussia Dortmund, displaying an unerring ability to use both feet by smashing in two well taken finishes with his so-called ‘weaker’ left boot.
The 24-year-old also showcased his brute strength before his first goal, shrugging off two Dortmund players before racing clear, proving that he is also a pure physical powerhouse as well as a measured finisher.
1. Liverpool’s Defence Costs Them Yet Again
An attack comparable to a Lamborghini, coupled with a defence comparable to a Ford Fiesta. Liverpool really are at odds with themselves.
Jurgen Klopp has assembled a blistering front line in Sadio Mane, Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino, but has left his back line lacking in the process.
A lack of investment in the defence in the summer looks to be proving costly for the Reds, as they still lack a solid centre back to partner Joel Matip.
The constant rotation of Joe Gomez and Trent Alexander-Arnold at right back, and the dithering about who starts between Dejan Lovren and Ragnar Klavan has made for an unsettled defence, and it will certainly need work done if Klopp hopes to compete on four fronts this season.