Club Brugge

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UEFA Champions League wrap: Ajax draws, Club Brugge wins

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The UEFA Champions League began its third qualifying round on Tuesday, with five sides taking advantage of the opportunity at hand.

[ MORE: Spurs agree Dybala fee ]


Club Brugge 1-0 Dynamo Kiev

Hans Vanaken’s 37th minute penalty was the difference as the Belgians will take an advantage to Ukraine.

New signing Simon Mignolet pitched the shutout after relegating American goalkeeper Ethan Horvath to the bench.

PAOK 2-2 Ajax

There were some North London Derby participants on show, as Chuba Akpom scored PAOK to make it 1-1 and Klaas-Jan Huntelaar bagged a 57th minute equalizer for Ajax after the Greek side went ahead.

Hakim Ziyech opened the scoring for Ajax, while Leo Matos scored PAOK’s other goal.

American prospect Sergino Dest was again an unused sub for the Dutch side.

Ziyech has been linked with a move to either Leicester City or Bayern Munich, and it’s easy to see why.

Elsewhere
APOEL Nicosia 1-2 Qarabag
Dinamo Zagreb 1-1 Ferencvaros
Red Star Belgrade 1-1 Copenhagen

Wednesday
Krasnodar v. Porto – 1 p.m. ET
Istanbul Basaksehir v. Olympiacos – 1:45 p.m. ET
CFR Cluj v. Celtic – 2 p.m. ET
Basel v. LASK – 2 p.m. ET
Maribor v. Rosenborg – 2:15 p.m. ET

Simon Mignolet departs Liverpool for Club Brugge

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Goalkeeper Simon Mignolet has left Liverpool on a permanent basis, completing a move to Belgian side Club Brugge, the club announced on Monday. He leaves for a reported fee of $7.8 million that could rise to $10 million with add-ons.

With the move, Mignolet ends a six-year tenure at Anfield that saw the Belgian international make just over 200 appearances for the Reds, including 155 in the Premier League, keeping 51 clean sheets. Mignolet spent last season backing up new arrival Alisson, appearing just twice, both times coming in domestic cup losses.

In fact, Mignolet had lost his place midway through the previous season with Loris Karius having taken over the starting spot between the sticks, a move that would have a disastrous ending in the Champions League final.

The 31-year-old came to Liverpool from Sunderland in 2013 for $12 million, where he had been for three years prior. He posted a classy goodbye to Liverpool and Reds fans on his social media account, calling it “an incredible honor to represent one of the biggest clubs in the world and to achieve things that few players ever manage to achieve.” He called the current crop of players he leaves behind “the best [squad] I’ve ever been a part of” and says of the Champions League victory earlier this summer, “I’ll never forget that night in Madrid, and I’m glad I got to share it with such a terrific group of lads.”

Mignolet moves back to his native country with the hopes of continuing his international career, where he’s earned 22 caps. The 31-year-old remains a part of the international setup, but has mostly served as a backup since late 2011 with Thibaut Courtois owning the brunt of the playing time over the past eight years.

Club Brugge finished second in the Belgian Jupiler Pro League last season, just two points behind rivals Genk. Mignolet represents a huge test for a goalkeeping crew at Club Brugge that includes the incumbent starter, 24-year-old U.S. international Ethan Horvath, as well as Coratian youth international Karlo Letica. Horvath started the final 18 league games for Club Brugge last season as well as the first two games of the current season.

Report: Villa beat rivals to $28M Brazilian striker

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Aston Villa’s bid to quickly reassert themselves in the Premier League has taken a good step on Thursday.

Reports out of Belgium say that the Villans have pipped Newcastle and Lazio to the signing of Club Brugge striker Wesley Moraes for $28 million.

[ MORE: Full PL schedule ]

The Brazilian striker, 22, posted 17 goals and 10 assists in all competitions last season, scoring twice in the Champions League against Monaco and once in the Europa League versus Red Bull Salzburg.

It’s a good sign for the Villans, along with keeping a hold of captain Jack Grealish.

While it’s silly to think Moraes will instantly slot into the Premier League side as a dynamic and prolific scorer, he’s well thought of and will hopefully develop chemistry with Grealish, Anwar El Ghazi, and Jonathan Kodija in a hurry.

Champions League wrap: PSG advances; USMNT stars shine

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Tottenham Hotspur, Paris Saint-Germain, and Liverpool clinched spots in the UEFA Champions League knockout rounds with results on Tuesday.

For Liverpool and PSG, the spots came via away wins, while Spurs crafted an equalizer to earn a point in Barcelona.

[ MORE: Champions League standings ]

And two American players had good days, with Club Brugge goalkeeper Ethan Horvath keeping a clean sheet and Borussia Dortmund’s Christian Pulisic setting the table for a goal.


Club Brugge 0-0 Atletico Madrid

On the same day Zack Steffen was announced as a future goalkeeper for a Champions League club, fellow USMNT backstop Ethan Horvath produced a fine display in blanking Atletico Madrid.

Horvath, 23, made several key saves as Club Brugge finished third in its group and will play in the Europa League knockout rounds. Antoine Griezmann, Saul, Koke, and Thomas Lemar were among the top players in the XI for Atleti.

AS Monaco 0-2 Borussia Dortmund

Thierry Henry’s men are out of European competition thanks to a pair of goals from Raphael Guerreiro and no offensive answers of their own.

Paco Alcacer and Maximilian Philipp assisted the goals, and American winger Christian Pulisic went 90 minutes for the Bundesliga leaders.

He deserves the ol’ hockey assist on this one:


Barcelona 1-1 Tottenham HotspurRECAP

Lucas Moura‘s late goal was enough to get Spurs a draw at the Camp Nou, canceling out Ousmane Dembele’s terrific opening goal.

Inter Milan 1-1 PSV Eindhoven

Hirving Lozano’s early goal nearly stood up for the visitors, and Mauro Icardi’s late leveler wasn’t enough to push Inter beyond Spurs. That means Inter Milan is off to the Europa League.


Red Star Belgrade 1-4 Paris Saint-Germain

The stars were out for PSG, which knew it would move into the knockout rounds with a win and built a 2-0 lead through Edinson Cavani and Neymar before Marquinhos and Kylian Mbappe put it to bed late to win Group C.

Liverpool 1-0 NapoliRECAP

The chances were myriad for Liverpool, but only Mohamed Salah found the back of the net as the Reds earned a spot in the Round of 16.


Schalke 1-0 Lokomotiv Moscow

Alessandro Schopf scored the lone goal, and USMNT midfielder Weston McKennie was rested for already-advanced Schalke.

Galatasaray 2-3 Porto

Sergio Oliveira’s goal was decisive in a wild match with two penalties but no lead changes.

Champions League wrap: Messi, Mertens star in wins

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Four spots remain in the UEFA Champions League’s Round of 16 following Wednesday’s group stage action.

Who’s qualified for the knockout rounds? Ajax, Atletico Madrid, Barcelona, Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund, Juventus, Manchester City, Manchester United, Porto, Real Madrid, Roma, and Schalke are moving into the new year.

[ MORE: Robbie Keane announces retirement ]


Tottenham Hotspur 1-0 Inter MilanRECAP

Christian Eriksen‘s late finish of a fine team goal gave Tottenham Hotspur hope of the knockout rounds.

PSV Eindhoven 1-2 Barcelona

Lionel Messi had a goal and sent in the ball that Gerard Pique sent home for Barca’s second goal in a win which seals Group B.

Group A
Team GP W D L GF GA GD Home Away PTS
Atlético Madrid 5 4 0 1 9 6 3 3-0-0 1-0-1 12
Borussia Dortmund 5 3 1 1 8 2 6 2-1-0 1-0-1 10
Club Brugge 5 1 2 2 6 5 1 0-1-1 1-1-1 5
Monaco 5 0 1 4 2 12 -10 0-0-2 0-1-2 1

Borussia Dortmund 0-0 Club Brugge

American youngsters Christian Pulisic and Ethan Horvath faced off at the Westfalenstadion, with the Club Brugge goalkeeper making a few stops on Borussia Dortmund’s young star. Okay, so there’s a bit more to this one than that, but given the lack of goals, it’s what sat atop our minds. BVB moves onto the knockout rounds with the point.

Atletico Madrid 2-0 AS Monaco

Thierry Henry’s side went behind before the clock hit 2:00, and Monaco has officially been eliminated from European competition regardless of what happens at home to Dortmund on Dec. 11.

Group B
Team GP W D L GF GA GD Home Away PTS
Barcelona 5 4 1 0 13 4 9 2-0-0 2-1-0 13
Tottenham Hotspur 5 2 1 2 8 9 -1 2-0-1 0-1-1 7
Inter Milan 5 2 1 2 5 6 -1 1-1-0 1-0-2 7
PSV Eindhoven 5 0 1 4 5 12 -7 0-1-2 0-0-2 1

 

Napoli 3-1 Red Star Belgrade

Marek Hamsik scored early and Dries Mertens added two before halftime as Napoli cruised into pole position in Group C. A draw, scoring 1-goal loss, or better against Liverpool will be enough for a knockout round berth (a PSG loss also helps).

PSG 2-1 LiverpoolRECAP

The Reds conceded twice early and only put one shot on target, a penalty kick, as Neymar’s had a fine day at the Parc des Princes.

Group C
Team GP W D L GF GA GD Home Away PTS
Napoli 5 2 3 0 7 4 3 2-1-0 0-2-0 9
Paris SG 5 2 2 1 13 8 5 2-1-0 0-1-1 8
Liverpool 5 2 0 3 8 7 1 2-0-0 0-0-3 6
Red Star Belgrade 5 1 1 3 4 13 -9 1-1-0 0-0-3 4

Lokomotiv Moscow 2-0 Galatasaray

Vladislav Ignatyev’s 54th minute marker joined a late first half own goal in giving Lokomotiv its first win of the group stage.

Porto 3-1 Schalke

Both sides are moving on, but Schalke’s late Nabil Bentaleb penalty wasn’t enough to drag the Bundesliga side back into the match. USMNT midfielder Weston McKennie did not play for Schalke.

 

Group D
Team GP W D L GF GA GD Home Away PTS
FC Porto 5 4 1 0 12 4 8 3-0-0 1-1-0 13
FC Schalke 04 5 2 2 1 5 4 1 1-1-0 1-1-1 8
Galatasaray 5 1 1 3 3 5 -2 1-1-0 0-0-3 4
Lokomotiv Moscow 5 1 0 4 4 11 -7 1-0-2 0-0-2 3