CHAMPIONS LEAGUE WRAP: Messi guides Barcelona, Chelsea hopes fade and Man Utd rolled | Premiership News | Tribal Football

The first half of fixtures for Match Day 5 of the 2012/13 Champions League season were completed tonight with all but one of the four groups in action still to be decided. The first half of fixtures for Match Day 5 of the 2012/13 Champions League season were completed tonight with all but one of the four groups in action still to be decided.In Group E, reigning champions Chelsea have seen their progression to the knockout phase take a massive blow after losing 3-0 to Juventus in Turin.Fabio Quagliarella, Arturo Vidal and Sebastian Giovinco heaped misery on the Blues who will now have to beat Nordsjaelland and hope Shakhtar Donetsk see off Juventus in the final group fixtures after the Ukraine side hammered the Danes 5-2 courtesy of a Luiz Adriano treble and Willian double.Group F is decided after Valencia and Bayern Munich drew 1-1 in Spain with Lille’s 2-0 triumph over BATE Borisov denying the Belarusians their chance to move closer to the top two.Both Valencia and last season’s runner-up Bayern are now on 10 points from five outings – four clear of BATE – who missed the boat by losing to Lille who notched up their first points of the campaign.Lionel Messi went within five goals of Gerd Muller’s scoring record of 85 in a calendar year by notching his 80th goal of 2012 with a brace as Barcelona eased past Spartak Moscow 3-0 in Russia.The Argentine ace struck in the 27th and 39th minutes following Dani Alves’ opener as the Catalan giants went five points clear in top of Group G after Benfica edged Celtic 2-1 in Portugal.Those two sides both sit on seven points with the Hoops more favoured to go through as they host Spartak in the final match whilst Benfica have the unenviable task of playing Barcelona at the Nou Camp.And in Group H, Manchester United were toppled 1-0 by Galatasaray but the result did not alter the Red Devils’ progress to the next stage as they sit five points clear of the Turkish club who were joined on seven points by CFR Cluj.A Rui Pedro hat-trick led the Romanians to a 3-1 home win over Braga who are now out of calculations with second place to be decided when Cluj head to Old Trafford on December 5 and Gala’ meet Braga away on the same date.Tomorrow night is highlighted by Manchester City’s must-win meeting with Spanish champions Real Madrid in Group D whilst Ajax host Borussia Dortmund in the same group.Arsenal host Montpellier in Group B and require Schalke to defeat Olympiakos in order to qualify whilst AC Milan have to beat Anderlecht in Group C to join group leaders Malaga in the next phase.2012/13 UEFA Champions League scores – Match Day 5Group EJuventus (ITA): 3 (Fabio Quagliarella 38’, Arturo Vidal 61’, Sebastian Giovinco 90+1’)Chelsea (ENG): 0Juventus Stadium, Turin, Italy – 39,670Nordsjaelland (DEN): 2 (Morten Nordstrand 24’, Kasper Lorentzen 29’)Shakhtar Donetsk (UKR): 5 (Luiz Adriano 26’/53’/81’, Willian 44’/50’)Parken Stadium, Copenhagen, Denmark – 17,054Group FBATE Borisov (BLR): 0Lille (FRA): 2 (Djibril Sidibe 14’, Gianni Bruno 31’, red card: Sidibe 74’)Stadyen Dynama, Minsk, Belarus – 22,810Valencia (SPN): 1 (Sofiane Feghouli 77’, red card: Antonio Barragan 33’)Bayern Munich (GER): 1 (Thomas Muller 82’)Estadio Mestalla, Valencia, spain – 35,407Group GSpartak Moscow (RUS): 0Barcelona (SPN): 3 (Dani Alves 16’, Lionel Messi 27’/39’)Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow, Russia – 67,325Benfica (POR): 2 (Ola John 7’, Ezequiel Garay 71’)Celtic (SCO): 1 (Georgios Samaras 32’)Estadio da Luz, Lisbon, Portugal – 47,065Group HGalatasaray (TUR): 1 (Burak Yilmaz 54’)Manchester United (ENG): 0Turk Telekom Arena, Istanbul, Turkey – 50,278CFR Cluj-Napoca (ROM): 3 (Rui Pedro 7’/15’/33’)Sporting Braga (POR): 1 (Alan 17’)Stadionul Dr Constantin Radulescu, Cluj, Romania – 14,635

Samaras confident Celtic can cover suspended Wanyama | Scottish Football News | Tribal Football

Celtic forward Georgios Samaras is confident that the team can overcome the loss of Victor Wanyama for their final Champions League group match. Celtic forward Georgios Samaras is confident that the team can overcome the loss of Victor Wanyama for their final Champions League group match.The Scottish champions were beaten 2-1 by Benfica on Tuesday night and now need to win in their final Group G outing against Spartka Moscow and hope Barcelona can defeat the Portuguese side on December 5.Celtic will need to beat the Russian outfit without key midfielder Wanyama, who misses due to yellow card accumulation, but Samaras feels there is enough depth to deal with his absence.”Victor’s a great player and he is helping the team a lot with his strength. But I think we have enough players in the squad to cover him,” said the Greek striker.Wanyama has emerged as a Celtic star since his value move from Beerschot last summer with Manchester United extremely interested in acquiring his services this winter. The game is about opinions. Make yours heard! Join the tribalfootball.com nation on Facebook today: Facebook.com/tribalfootball

Qualification still achievable for my ‘exceptional’ Celtic side – Lennon | Scottish Football News | Tribal Football

Neil Lennon is thrilled that his Celtic side is still in with a chance of qualifying for the knockout phase of the Champions League despite Tuesday night’s loss. Neil Lennon is thrilled that his Celtic side is still in with a chance of qualifying for the knockout phase of the Champions League despite Tuesday night’s loss.The Bhoys were beaten 2-1 by Benfica in Lisbon but are still alive in the competition as they sit third on the Group G table, equal on points with the Portuguese outfit.With Barcelona already through, Celtic needs to beat Spartak Moscow in the final group fixture on December 5 and hope the Catalan giants can avoid defeat to Benfica and Lennon is holding hope that can occur, which would allow his ‘exceptional’ team a surprise Round of 16 berth.”I think Benfica are capable of getting a win in Barcelona, for they are an excellent side,” said Lennon.”But we have to make them do that.”I don’t know what kind of mindset Spartak will be in, they might want to spoil our party, we have to be totally focused.”What we have to do is win at home and make Benfica win in the Nou Camp which is no easy feat.”The onus is on us to do that.”The squad is stretched, we hope to have a few more players back for that game.”No-one gave us a prayer coming in to this competition, these players have been exceptional, they have made a name for themselves and we are still in with a good chance of qualifying.” The game is about opinions. Make yours heard! Join the tribalfootball.com nation on Facebook today: Facebook.com/tribalfootball

Capello convinced Juventus will retain Scudetto | Serie A News | Tribal Football

Former Juventus coach Fabio Capello believes his old club will retain the Scudetto.But he’s not a fan of their 3-5-2 system. Former Juventus coach Fabio Capello believes his old club will retain the Scudetto.But he’s not a fan of their 3-5-2 system.“There isn’t a race. Juventus will win. In the past there was Cragnotti’s Lazio, Tanzi’s Parma, as well as Milan and Inter. Today, in Italy, Juve can do what they want.“The three-man defence is the worst thing about football today. We’ve gone back 20 years. In reality, it is a five-man defence.”

Lennon fears 10-week absence for Celtic skipper Brown | Scottish Football News | Tribal Football

Celtic boss Neil Lennon has indicated that captain Scott Brown may be sidelined for up to 10 weeks with a hip injury. Celtic boss Neil Lennon has indicated that captain Scott Brown may be sidelined for up to 10 weeks with a hip injury.The midfielder has been in and out of the Hoops line-up this season because of the ongoing complaint but after may now require surgery after succumbing to the problem in the second half of Tuesday night’s 2-1 Champions League loss to Benfica.”Scott Brown has run his course, we may have to book him in for surgery,” said Lennon.”We are looking at eight to 10 weeks.”He has been pushing himself to the limit and we can’t keep asking him to put himself through the amount of distress that obviously he was doing towards the end of his time on the pitch.”He has been a huge player for us this season, I think it is time to get the problem addressed and hopefully he will have something to look forward to in the new year.” The game is about opinions. Make yours heard! Join the tribalfootball.com nation on Facebook today: Facebook.com/tribalfootball

Juventus striker Bendtner reluctant to make Arsenal return | Transfers | Tribal Football

Juventus striker Nicklas Bendtner is unsure about a return to parent club Arsenal.The Dane is on a season-long loan with Juve. Juventus striker Nicklas Bendtner is unsure about a return to parent club Arsenal.The Dane is on a season-long loan with Juve.“A return to Arsenal? It is a difficult one because I feel a lot of things for Arsenal and most of them are good things,” he said.“I left not on bad terms, but not great terms either.“In football you never know, but at the moment I am focused on Juventus and my future can lie at Arsenal or elsewhere.“It is not 100 per cent decided, but I am focused on Juventus and then see where I go next year.”

Nervous Celtic staying positive despite Champions League defeat – Samaras | Scottish Football News | Tribal Football

Georgios Samaras feels Celtic were nervous during their 2-1 Champions League loss to Benfica on Tuesday night. Georgios Samaras feels Celtic were nervous during their 2-1 Champions League loss to Benfica on Tuesday night.The Hoops were brought back down to earth after their brilliant 2-1 home victory over Barcelona a fortnight ago and now need to beat Spartak Moscow and hope Barce get the better of Benfica in the final group stage game if they are to progress.Smaras, who netted Celtic’s goal in the 32nd minute, admitted Neil Lennon’s side played with nerves in Portugal but is confident they can bounce back against Spartak at Parkhead on December 5.”For the full 90 minutes we were a little bit nervous,” said Samaras. “We didn’t have a clear mind but it’s finished.”I didn’t think we played really well but the game was really close. The only thing we can keep is the team effort and the really hard work we had.”We are just looking forward to the next game and we must stay positive.”We still have a chance to go through and we will do our best to go through to the next round.” The game is about opinions. Make yours heard! Join the tribalfootball.com nation on Facebook today: Facebook.com/tribalfootball

Roma striker Destro likened to Bobo Vieri | Serie A News | Tribal Football

AS Roma striker Mattia Destro has been likened to Christian Vieri.Destro is struggling to find the back of the net since joining Roma in the summer. AS Roma striker Mattia Destro has been likened to Christian Vieri.Destro is struggling to find the back of the net since joining Roma in the summer.“He reminds me of Bobo Vieri,” former Juventus and Italy midfielder Angelo Di Livio told Radio Mana Mana.“He attacks space in a similar way and he has the same sort of physical attributes.”

Lazio defender Diakite staying, insists agent | Serie A News | Tribal Football

Lazio defender Modibo Diakite is expected to remain beyond the January market.Diakite has been linked with Fiorentina this season. Lazio defender Modibo Diakite is expected to remain beyond the January market.Diakite has been linked with Fiorentina this season.“It is not a given that he will leave in January,” representative Ulisse Savini told La Lazio Siamo Noi.“The player is training with the squad and is doing so in a professional manner. It is obvious that he wants to play, but that hasn’t happened up until now.“But there are no agreements with any other clubs. That’s just journalistic invention.“I haven’t spoken to Fiorentina since the summer, there is nothing in those stories. It is the same with regard to presumed offers from Milan, Inter and Juventus…”

Zeman delighted with Roma return to form | Serie A News | Tribal Football

AS Roma coach Zdenek Zeman was delighted to return to winning ways on Monday night against Torino. AS Roma coach Zdenek Zeman was delighted to return to winning ways on Monday night against Torino.Goals from Pablo Osvaldo and Miralem Pjanic were enough to give the Giallorossi the three points.“For me, the team played really well tonight,” Zeman told Sky Sport Italia. “We played with pace, aggression and avoided the sort of mistakes that have cost us in other matches.“The clean sheet also pleased me.”