Best of CL
We look at the best and worst moments from the first legs of the Champions League quarter-finals.
By Chris Burton
Last Updated: 07/04/11 12:36pm
Team of the week
Game of the weekReal Madrid 4 Tottenham 0
Real Madrid's home date with Tottenham had a bit of everything, with talking points raised before a ball had even been kicked. Aaron Lennon's withdrawal from the Spurs starting XI moments before kick-off caused confusion, before Emmanuel Adebayor opened the scoring inside five minutes of the action getting under way. Peter Crouch was then sent off for the visitors after collecting two rash yellow cards in the opening quarter-of-an-hour. His dismissal left Spurs with a mountain to climb and they were picked off in ruthless fashion by Real after the interval. Adebayor bagged his second of the night shortly before the hour mark and Angel Di Maria added a spectacular third as Tottenham began to fall apart. The only thing missing was a goal from the prolific Cristiano Ronaldo, and he finally got in on the act three minutes from time to all-but end the two-legged tie as a contest.
Player of the weekEmmanuel Adebayor
Adebayor had plenty of reasons to be fired up for a midweek showdown with Tottenham, and he did not disappoint. With his loan deal from Manchester City set to expire at the end of the season, he is eager to impress Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho and earn a permanent stay. As a former Arsenal man, the Togolese striker is also aware of what it means to do the business against Spurs. He proved to be a thorn in Harry Redknapp's side on Tuesday night, with a two-goal salvo all-but ending Spurs' European adventure. His first, in a comprehensive win for Real at Santiago Bernabeu, arrived after just five minutes as he was left all alone at a corner to force a header past Luka Modric on the line. Adebayor then added a second on 57 minutes, with another towering header planted firmly into the corner past a helpless Heurelho Gomes. That effort took his tally in meetings with Tottenham to 10 in 13 games and gave Mourinho a timely reminder of his talents.
Goal of the weekDejan Stankovic
It took Stankovic just 23 seconds to break the deadlock for Inter Milan in their encounter with Schalke on Tuesday, with his effort the fifth fastest in UEFA Champions League history. It was a spectacular goal too, with the Serbia international finding the target from just inside the Schalke half. Manuel Neuer was forced well outside of his area to deal with a looping ball and opted to head back up to halfway. The German keeper could only pick out Stankovic, though, and was forced to watch on helplessly as the experienced midfielder returned his clearance with interest, volleying the ball high over the heads of the retreating defenders and into the back of the net. Unfortunately for Inter, a bright start soon evaporated and they found themselves on the wrong end of a 5-2 hammering.
Save of the weekEdwin van der Sar
Fernando Torres must be wondering what he has to do to open his account for Chelsea after drawing another blank against Manchester United on Wednesday. The £50million striker should have bagged his first for the Blues in the closing stages of the first half, but failed to make telling contact with a Dider Drogba cross-shot and saw the ball strike the post. The Spaniard thought his big moment had finally arrived inside the final 20 minutes of a keenly-fought contest at Stamford Bridge, with a looping header from a Jose Bosingwa cross seemingly destined for the far corner. Torres was denied again, though, as United keeper Van der Sar belied his 40 years to spring to his left and claw the ball to safety.
Shock of the weekSchalke's victory in Milan
Having fallen behind inside the opening minute against reigning champions Inter Milan, Schalke must have feared the worst on Tuesday. They did reply through Joel Matip, but found themselves trailing again shortly after the half-hour mark as Diego Milito restored the hosts' advantage. To Schalke's immense credit, they then proceeded to tear an Inter side boasting a number of European champions to shreds. They may be struggling for form in the Bundesliga, but in continental competition the German outfit are enjoying a fairytale run. The impressive Edu ensured that they entered the interval on level terms with Inter, before the evergreen Raul added another goal to his record-breaking Champions League tally. An Andrea Ranocchia own goal edged Schalke further in front and Edu bagged his second of the game 15 minutes from time to put the seal on a shock success.
Gaffe of the weekPeter Crouch
As if a trip to Madrid to take on the might of Real was not difficult enough, Crouch's moment of madness ensured that Tottenham ended up facing mission impossible in the Spanish capital. The England striker is not known for his reckless tackling and rushes of blood, but he blotted his copybook big time on Tuesday night. The languid frontman crashed into an early challenge on Sergio Ramos, earning him a needless yellow card. You would have thought that he would have learned his lesson from that caution, but a few minutes later he was heading down the tunnel for an early bath. Another late and unnecessary lunge at Marcelo saw him given his marching orders and left Spurs with their backs firmly pressed against the wall.
Controversy of the weekChelsea penalty call
Meetings between Chelsea and Manchester United rarely pass without a controversial call from the match officials and their midweek showdown at Stamford Bridge proved to be no different. In the end the Red Devils left the capital with a slender 1-0 lead, with a solitary effort from Wayne Rooney enough to give them the upper-hand ahead of a return date at Old Trafford. Things could have been different, though, had Chelsea been handed a late penalty. Rio Ferdinand could only nudge the ball over his own head as the Blues launched an attack, handing possession to Ramires. The Brazilian midfielder burst forward towards the box, but was sent tumbling by an ill-advised challenge from Patrice Evra. Chelsea appealed as one for a spot kick, but Spanish referee Alberto Mallenco waved away their protests, leaving Carlo Ancelotti fuming.