Champions League Draw & Ballon D'Or List - Sunday Football Paper - Vol 5

EPL match week 4 and other European leagues produced a lot of exciting moments. 

Hattrick Wonderland in England
It was dubbed the hattrick weekend in the Premier League, with Haaland, Son and Brighton's bright young star Evans taking the match ball home. 
The Norwegian scoring didn't surprise many as he has now scored seven hat-tricks for the Cityzens since joining the club last season and is currently the top scorer in the league with 6 goals. 

As someone that keeps breaking records for fun, Haaland also becomes the fastest player in the Premier League history to reach 50 goal contributions; doing so in just 39 games. Son Heung-Min helped Tottenham to a 5-2 victory away to Burnley after also getting himself a hat-trick. The Spurs captain hadn't registered a goal or assist before the game this season but did so in fine fashion. 

Sports Illustrated

📷 Sports Illustrated

Get the latest Premier League jerseys at a discount.

Chelsea had yet another disappointing weekend following their 1-0 defeat to Nottingham Forest at Stamford Bridge. The second half strike from Anthony Elanga was enough to hand Chelsea their second defeat of the season. Chelsea head into the international break with only 1 win and sitting 12th on the table.

Jude Ronaldo?
In La Liga, Jude Bellingham continues to set himself in the limelight. The summer signing for Real Madrid left it late to clinch all three points against Getafe in their 2-1 win. 
The 20-year old remains La Liga's top scorer this season with 5 goals after 4 games and becomes the second player to score in each of his first LaLiga matches for Real Madrid after Cristiano Ronaldo. 

Real Madrid

📷 Real Madrid C.F.

Real Madrid, with a perfect start to the season, sit on top of the LaLiga standings. 

Barcelona secured a hard fought 2-1 win against 10-man Osasuna, goals from Joules Kounde and Robert Lewandowski. Young talent, Gavi made his 100th appearance in the game and became the youngest player to achieve such a milestone at the club at the age of 19. 

Get the new Barcelona jerseys.


Other Top Leagues In Europe

In Serie A, 10 man AC Milan held on to a 2-1 win against Roma at the Stadio Olimpico. Goals from formidable duo Rafael Leao and Olivier Giroud were enough to see them to victory against Mourinho's boys. 

Napoli suffered their first defeat of the season to the hands of Lazio. Lazio, on the other hand, got their first win of the first season in a 2-1 victory against the defending champions. 

Inter Milan with an emphatic 4-0 victory against Fiorentina. Lautaro Martinez got a brace in the game and other goals coming from Marcus Thuram and Hakan Calhanoglu. They sit at the top of the league on goal difference. 

Bayern Munich had to come from behind to beat Borussia Monchengladbach 2-1 to maintain their unbeaten start to the season in the German Bundesliga while Dortmund were held to a 2-2 draw. 

Mbappe's brace accompanied with goals from Achraf Hakimi and Marco Asensio led PSG to a 4-1 victory over Lyon. 

The Champions League Group Stage Draw

The Champions League group stage is set for all 32 teams that qualified for the 2023/24 Champions League season. 

The defending champions were grouped in Group G alongside RB Leipzig, Young Boys and Crvena Zvezda. Arsenal made a return to the Champions League after 7 years and were included in Group B which contains Sevilla, PSV and Lens. Record winners Real Madrid are present in Group C together with Napoli, Braga and Union Berlin. 

What many consider as "The group of death", Group F consists of PSG, Dortmund, AC Milan and Newcastle. The full group stage draw can be seen below. 


📷 UEFA Champions League 

Ballon D'Or Next For Haaland?

The same day the Champions League group stage was conducted, Erling Haaland was awarded the 2023 UEFA Men's Player of the Year award.

A treble winning season with Man City alongside a total of 52 goals scored in 53 games in the 2022/23 season was enough to make him win the award. Pep Guardiola was also voted as the UEFA Men's Coach of the Year. 

Manchester City

Next up is the Ballon D'Or in October and some sports analysts and football believe Messi would win his 8th award after his heroics at the World Cup. Some also believe Haaland would win the award but time will tell.

African and Nigeria also make history as Victor Osimehin and Asisat Oshoala both get nominated for Ballon D'Or making it the first time both male and female players from the same African country get nominated.  

Punch Newspapers

Here's the 30-man shortlist for the award:

See the full of the nominees

André Onana – Manchester United/Cameroon
Josko Gvardiol – Manchester City/Croatia
Karim Benzema – Al Ittihad
Jamal Musiala – Bayern Munich/Germany
Mohamed Salah – Liverpool/Egypt
Jude Bellingham – Real Madrid/England
Bukayo Saka – Arsenal/England
Randal Kolo Muani – Paris Saint-Germain/France
Kevin De Bruyne – Manchester City/Belgium
Bernardo Silva – Manchester City/Portugal
Emiliano Martínez – Aston Villa/Argentina
Khvicha Kvaratskhelia – Napoli/Georgia
Rúben Dias – Manchester City/Portugal
Nicolo Barella – Inter Milan/Italy
Erling Haaland – Manchester City/Norway
Yassine Bounou – Al Hilal/Morocco
Martin Ødegaard – Arsenal/Norway
Julián Álvarez – Manchester City/Argentina
Ilkay Gündogan – Barcelona/Germany
Vinícius Júnior – Real Madrid/Brazil
Lionel Messi – Inter Miami/Argentina
Rodri – Manchester City/Spain
Lautaro Martínez – Inter Milan/Argentina
Antoine Griezmann – Atletico Madrid/France
Robert Lewandowski – Barcelona/Poland
Kylian Mbappé – Paris Saint-Germain/France
Kim Min-Jae – Napoli/South Korea
Victor Osimhen – Napoli/Nigeria
Luka Modric – Real Madrid/Croatia
Harry Kane – Bayern Munich/England

Source: Punch Newspaper

FIBA World Cup 2023

The FIBA World Cup which commenced on the 25th of August 2023 has been a very interesting one so far; all 64 teams competing for the grand prize. 

The basketball tournament is currently being held in Indonesia, Japan and the Philippines but the Philippines will solely host the latter stages of the tournament. 

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published