Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Messi and Barca outgun Spurs as PSG’s Neymar bags hat-trick



Messi and Barca outgun Spurs as PSG’s Neymar bags hat-trick

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Barcelona forward Lionel Messi celebrates after scoring his side’s third goal during their Champions League group B match with Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley Stadium in northwest London on Wednesday night. Glyn KIRK/AFP

Messi and Barca outgun Spurs as PSG’s Neymar bags hat-trick

Lionel Messi struck twice as Barcelona inflicted more Champions League pain on Tottenham with a 4-2 win at Wembley on Wednesday, while Neymar hit a brilliant hat-trick in Paris Saint-Germain’s 6-1 rout of Red Star Belgrade.

Philippe Coutinho scored after just two minutes for Barcelona, who arrived in London winless in three La Liga matches, with Ivan Rakitic drilling in a magnificent second.

Messi, who had earlier twice hit the post, then got on the scoresheet in between goals from Harry Kane and Erik Lamela, before the Argentina superstar grabbed his second late on to seal victory.

“After a few bad results it was important to do well today. Our response was very good,” said Barca coach Ernesto Valverde.

Barca head Group B on six points alongside Inter Milan, but Mauricio Pochettino’s side face a vital double-header against PSV Eindhoven after failing to collect a point from their opening two matches.

The Tottenham boss admitted Spurs had few answers for Messi as his team was left with an uphill struggle to reach the knockout stages. “He’s a fantastic player,” said Pochettino. “His average performance is this type of game. He’s always above everything.”

Inter, the last Italian club to win the Champions League in 2010, again recovered from a goal down to beat PSV 2-1 in the Netherlands.

A cracking Pablo Rosario strike put PSV ahead, but Inter levelled through Radja Nainggolan moments after visiting goalkeeper Samir Handanovic somehow escaped a red card for handling outside his area.

Mauro Icardi, whose late goal stunned Spurs a fortnight ago, was the hero again for Luciano Spalletti’s men as he pounced on hesitant defending to net the winner on the hour.

PSG rebounded from their 3-2 defeat by Liverpool with an attacking masterclass against 1991 European Cup winners Red Star at the Parc des Princes.

Neymar curled in a sublime free-kick to open the scoring on 20 minutes, quickly doubling his tally before Edinson Cavani, Angel di Maria and Kylian Mbappe also found the target.

Insigne sinks Liverpool

Former Germany international Marko Marin popped up with a consolation for Red Star, with Neymar completing his hat-trick from another stunning free-kick.

“I really liked the effort made by the whole team, but Neymar was sensational,” said PSG coach Thomas Tuchel. “He is one of the best players in Europe and that is very, very important for us.”

Carlo Ancelotti’s Napoli top Group C on four points after Lorenzo Insigne delivered a 90th-minute winner at home to Liverpool, who are level on three alongside PSG. Dries Mertens hit the bar for Napoli late on, but there was still time for Insigne to nick all three points at the death as he slid to poke in a cross from Jose Callejon.

“Tonight we showed this group won’t just be hard for Napoli, but for everyone involved,” said Ancelotti. “It means a lot to us to have won against the finalists from last year.”

Antoine Griezmann scored two goals to lift Atletico Madrid, last season’s Europa League winners, to a 3-1 victory over Club Brugge in Spain.

Arnaut Groeneveld cancelled out Griezmann’s opener with a thunderous strike, but the France international restored Atletico’s lead before Koke made the points safe in stoppage time.

“I said it last season and I’ll say it again – Griezmann is the best player in the world,” Atletico coach Diego Simeone said.

Borussia Dortmund lead Atletico at the top of Group A on goal difference following their 3-0 defeat of a struggling Monaco outfit.

Jacob Bruun Larsen broke the deadlock in Germany shortly after his introduction as a half-time substitute, with Paco Alcacer finding the net just minutes after smacking a penalty against the bar.

Marco Reus fired in a third from a Bruun Larsen cross, leaving Dortmund and Atletico on six points apiece ahead of their upcoming home-and-away meetings.

In Group D, American international midfielder Weston McKennie hit an 88th-minute winner as struggling Schalke edged Lokomotiv Moscow 1-0.

Porto are joint-top with Schalke following a 1-0 win over Galatasaray courtesy of Moussa Marega’s second-half goal in Portugal.

MOST VIEWED

  • Prince Norodom Ranariddh passes away at 77

    Prince Norodom Ranariddh, the second son of the late King Father Norodom Sihanouk and former First Prime Minister of Cambodia, has passed away in France at the age of 77. “Samdech Krom Preah Norodom Ranariddh has passed away this morning in France just after 9am Paris-time,”

  • General’s gun smuggling ring busted

    The Military Police sent six military officers to court on November 22 to face prosecution for possession of 105 illegal rifles and arms smuggling, while investigators say they are still hunting down additional accomplices. Sao Sokha, deputy commander of the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces and commander of

  • More Cambodians studying in US

    The number of Cambodian students studying at US colleges and universities in 2020-21 increased by 14.3 per cent over the previous year despite the Covid-19 pandemic, according to a recent US government report. The 2021 Open Doors report on International Educational Exchange showed that 848 Cambodian students studied

  • Cambodia, Thailand to discuss border reopening

    Cambodian authorities from provinces along the Cambodia-Thailand border will meet with Thai counterparts to discuss reopening border checkpoints to facilitate travel, transfer of products and cross-border trade between the two countries. Banteay Meanchey provincial deputy governor Ly Sary said on November 22 that the provincial administration

  • Banteay Meanchey gunfight sees 15 Thais arrested, three officers injured

    The Banteay Meanchey Military Police have arrested 15 Thai suspects and their accomplices after a gun battle between two Thai groups caused injuries to three police officers in the early hours of November 21, local authorities said. National Military Police spokesman Eng Hy said that according to

  • PM: Do not defile Tonle Sap swamp forest or else

    Prime Minister Hun Sen ordered police to arrest anyone – including government officials – involved with the deforestation of the flooded forests surrounding the Tonle Sap Lake because it is an area important to the spawning of many species of fish, among other reasons. Speaking in a