UEFA Champions League 2023-24: Top 5 Performers From Matchday 6

UEFA Champions League Trophy
UEFA Champions League Trophy

The group stage of the 2023-24 UEFA Champions League season finished with a host of fascinating results on Matchday 6. Manchester United crashed out of Europe after finishing rock bottom in Group A, Manchester City and Real Madrid secured Round Of 16 qualification with a 100% record, Barcelona lost to underdogs Royal Antwerp in Belgium, Atletico Madrid beat Lazio to top their group, and AC Milan and Newcastle United failed to qualify for the Round Of 16 after Borussia Dortmund drew 1-1 with Paris Saint-Germain (PSG). Of course, these results were influenced by some spell-binding performances from top talents, and below, we will take a brief look at them.

Continue reading to check out which five players stood out in the final group-stage Matchday of the 2023-24 Champions League season. Let’s begin!

#5 Samuel Dias Lino – Atletico Madrid

Samuel Dias Lino Was One Of The Top Performers Of Matchday 6
Samuel Dias Lino Scored And Assisted Against Lazio

The top two teams in Group E, Atletico Madrid and Lazio, went head to head to finalize the group rankings. Los Rojiblancos went into the game as Group E leaders, with 11 points on the board. Lazio sat in second with 10 points. A win at the Estadio Metropolitano would have guaranteed the top spot for the Italians. Samuel Dias Lino saw to it personally that this did not happen.

In the sixth minute, the 23-year-old dashed down the left flank, spotted Antoine Griezmann’s run into the final third, and found the Frenchman with a perfectly weighted pass. The 32-year-old made no mistake in putting it away. A mere six minutes into the second half, Lino got on the scoresheet himself, expertly controlling a loose ball inside the box and finding the back of the net from 10 yards out. Lazio never recovered from the morale-crushing goal and succumbed to a 2-0 defeat.

#4 In-Beom Hwang – Red Star Belgrade

In Beom Hwang Was One Of The Best Players Of Matchday 6
In Beom Hwang Scored Once And Provided An Assist Against Manchester City

Red Star Belgrade put up a spectacular fight against the mighty European champions Manchester City on Matchday 6. They scored two late goals against City at the Stadion Rajko Mitic, succumbing to a narrow and respectable 3-2 defeat.

In-Beom Hwang did not end up on the winning side, but he was easily the game’s standout player. Latching on to the loose ball in the 76th minute, Hwang played a quick one-two with Osman Bukari before finding the back of the net from inside the area. His goal cut City’s advantage in half, but only momentarily, with Kalvin Phillips restoring the visitors’ advantage with his 85th-minute goal. Red Star, however, did not throw in the towel after conceding the late goal. In injury time, Hwang turned provider, setting up Aleksander Katai’s goal with a peach of a cross into the box.

#3 Angel Di Maria – Benfica

Angel Di Maria Was One Of The Best Performers Of Champions League Matchday 6
Angel Di Maria Won The Champions League With Real Madrid in 2014

Looking for their first win and a place in the UEFA Europa League, Benfica traveled to the Red Bull Arena in Austria for their clash with RB Salzburg on Matchday 6. Former Real Madrid superstar Angel Di Maria rose to the challenge, pitching in a goal and an assist to help the Portuguese outfit to a 3-1 victory. The win allowed Benfica to finish in third place in Group D and secure a place in the Europa League play-offs.

Di Maria scored Benfica’s first goal in the 32nd minute straight from a corner. His inswinging effort from the left corner evaded every Salzburg defender before zipping past goalkeeper Alexander Schlager. There was a VAR check for a possible foul by Nicolas Otamendi, but the goal ultimately stood. Just before the half-time whistle, Di Maria added an assist to his goal, setting up Rafa Silva with a perfectly measured through pass.

Luka Sucic gave Benfica a scare in the 57th minute, but Arthur Cabral’s insurance goal in injury time ensured a third-place finish for the visitors.

#2 Joselu – Real Madrid

Real Madrid Forward Joselu Was One Of The Best Performers Of Matchday 6
Real Madrid Forward Joselu Scored A Brace Against Union Berlin

Record 14-time European champions Real Madrid capped off their perfect run in Champions League Group C with a hard-fought 3-2 win over Union Berlin. Joselu, who has drawn criticism this season due to his lack of efficiency, scored two impressive goals to preserve Madrid’s 100% record.

The Spaniard canceled out Kevin Volland’s 45th-minute opener just past the hour mark. Joselu superbly met Rodrygo’s cross inside the box and steered it expertly beyond the goalkeeper’s reach.
In the 72nd minute, he doubled his tally, once again through a perfectly executed header. Fran Garcia led a counter-attack down the left flank before swinging an inch-perfect cross into the box. Joselu met the delivery with aplomb to put Madrid in front for the first time on the night.

Aissa Laidouni did equalize for Union Berlin in the 85th minute, but Dani Ceballos restored Madrid’s advantage only four minutes later.

#1 Wenderson Galeno – FC Porto

Porto Attacker Wenderson Galeno Was One Of The Best Performers Of Matchday 6
Wenderson Galeno Scored Twice And Provided 2 Assists On Matchday 6

FC Porto needed a victory over Shakhtar Donetsk on Matchday 6 to join Group H winners Barcelona in the Round Of 16. It was not an easy task, far from it, but thanks to a masterclass from Wenderson Galeno, the Portuguese outfit reached their goal in style. 

Galeno scored twice and claimed two assists as Porto picked up a 5-3 victory over the Ukrainians. 

The 26-year-old put his team in front in the ninth minute, slotting the ball home coolly from close range. Shakhtar equalized through Danylo Sikan but Galeno restored Porto’s advantage with a stunning strike from the edge of the box. In the 62nd minute, Galeno added an assist to his name, setting up Mehdi Taremi with a perfectly weighted through-ball. Stefan Eustaquio’s own goal made things tense in the 72nd minute, but Pepe’s goal, which came from Galeno’s delivery, restored Porto’s two-goal cushion.

Chico Conceicao scored Porto’s fifth goal of the night, but Eguinaldo ensured Shakhtar did not lose by a three-goal margin.

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