UEFA Champions League: quarter-final first leg roundup
Wednesday, April 4, 2007
The first leg of the Champions League quarter-finals were played out on Tuesday and Wednesday. Of the three English teams remaining in the competition, only one was able to earn themselves a win in the first leg, that being Liverpool. Draws occurred in the Chelsea/Valencia and Milan/Bayern games, while Manchester United lost on the road in Rome.
PSV Eindhoven 0 - 3 Liverpool
Liverpool thumped Dutch side PSV Eindhoven on Tuesday, with Steven Gerrard, John Arne Riise, and Peter Crouch all scoring for the reds. The huge away win leaves Liverpool in the driving seat of the series, with PSV coach Koeman telling the press "we're as good as out (of the competition)."
For a full recap of the match, see: Liverpool defeat PSV 3-0 in Holland
AC Milan 2 - 2 Bayern Munich
In the other Tuesday night match, German side Bayern Munich travelled to the Guiseppe Meazza stadium to play Serie A side AC Milan. With both teams in good domestic form as of late, it was certain it would be hard to separate the two in the match, and as it turned out, that assumption was correct. Andrea Pirlo struck first for the home side, as his looping header evaded keeper Michael Rensing. Bayern eventually tied the match in the 78th minute through defender Daniel van Buyten, as his close range effort left no chance for Dida to make a save. A controversial penalty for Milan followed when a clean challenge by Lucio on Kaka was misjudged by the referee, and Kaka scored from the spot to restore Milan's lead. Bayern pushed back and were rewarded with a goal in the 94th minute, as van Buyten half volleyed the ball home with virtually the last kick of the game, earning himself a brace, and Bayern the draw.
Chelsea 1 - 1 Valencia
Spanish side Valencia travelled to London to take on Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday night. Valencia went into the game several men short due to injury as well as suspension due to the brawl with Internazionale players following the round of sixteen match last month. Even without the likes of Fernando Morientes, Valencia took a lead after 30 minutes when David Silva scored a screamer from well over 30 yards out. Chelsea equalised through Didier Drogba in the second half as he headed home a long ball from Ashley Cole. The goal was Drogba's 30th of the season in all competitions. The draw means Chelsea will have to win in Spain during the second leg to advance due to the away goals rule.
Roma 2 - 1 Manchester United
The Stadio Olympico was filled with 77000 fans for this match between Manchester United and home side AS Roma on Wednesday. The first big event of the game was the sending off of United midfielder Paul Scholes after only 34 minutes of play. Scholes was yellow carded twice for dangerous challenges, and was subsequently red carded by referee Herbert Fandel. Roma would then use the man advantage to take the lead before the half time break when Rodrigo Taddei's shot deflected off Wes Brown and into the back of the net. It looked as if Roma was going to take full control of the game, but Wayne Rooney struck back after 60 minutes, ending his European goal draught. Christiano Ronaldo set up the play after breaking through three challenges and feeding Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, who crossed into Rooney. Rooney chested down the cross and slotted the ball past Doni tying the match, and giving United a crucial away goal. Mancini's shot on net was then punched instead of caught by United keeper Edwin van Der Sar, and Mirko Vucinic was in the right place to restore Roma's lead, and effectively win them the match.
Return legs will be played on the 10th/11th of April.
- Graeme Bailey. "Roma claim narrow success" — SkySports, April 4, 2007
- Andrew Scurr. "Chelsea held by Valencia" — SkySports, April 4, 2007
- Tom Adams. "Reds rout poor PSV in Eindhoven" — SkySports, April 3, 2007
- Alex Dunn. "Van the man for Bayern" — SkySports, April 3, 2007
- Lewis Rutledge. "Koeman: We're as good as out" — SkySports, April 4, 2007