Both of the home sides prevailed on Tuesday in the opening first leg Round of 16 matches in the UEFA Champions League.
Borussia Dortmund’s Erling Haaland scored a brace in a eight-minute span in the second-half as the Bundesliga side held off Paris Saint-Germain 2-1 at Signal Iduna Park. It was Haland’s 10th and 11th respective goals for his new club since arriving from Red Bull Salzburg in January.
Haaland’s opener came in the 69th minute as the Norwegian poked home from close range. Raphael Guerreiro’s original attempt was blocked, but the loose ball bounced to the striker who made no mistake.
However, PSG would hit back immediately with their top two playmakers connecting for the equalizer. Kylian Mbappe skipped over the challenge from Dan-Axel Zagadou and squared a pass to Neymar who tied the match at 1-1.
American talent Giovanni Reyna came off the bench prior to PSG’s equalizer and would make an immediate impact on the eventual game-winning goal. Reyna played a pass for the streaking Haaland who took one touch before sending a blistering left-footed shot into the top of the goal.
— Borussen ✍🏼 (@BorussenEdits) February 18, 2020
Roman Burki made two saves on the night to preserve the slender win for Borussia Dortmund.
Atletico Madrid 1 – Liverpool 0
Liverpool suffered their first Champions League defeat since Sept. 2019 at Napoli after losing 1-0 to Atletico Madrid on Tuesday.
Jurgen Klopp’s side owned the possession at the Wanda Metropolitano, but ultimately lacked the final product in front of goal. Jan Oblak didn’t need to make a single save in the La Liga side’s home victory.
Saul Niguez’s close-range finish was all Atletico needed to claim a home win. Koke’s corner kick redirected off the foot of Fabinho, allowing Niguez the opportunity to poke home his effort past Alisson.
— footballsta (@footbalsta_) February 18, 2020
Mo Salah had the best effort for Liverpool in the 53rd minute, heading just wide with a free header. Joe Gomez picked out the Egyptian on the left side of Atletico’s box, but Salah’s header just missed the left post.
Liverpool completed 431 more passes than Atletico on the evening, but will have it all to do at Anfield in March if they want any chance of repeating as tournament champions.