How each association fared in the 2018-19 Champions League Group Stage

The Group Stage of this season’s UEFA Champions League drew to a close on Wednesday evening with 16 clubs now confirmed for the second round of this season’s tournament which restarts in February.

8 clubs fell into the Europa League whilst a further 8 clubs have been eliminated from European competition for the remainder of the season.

The English Premier League was the only association to see as many as four of their clubs reach the last 16, with Manchester City winning their group and Liverpool, Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur all progressing as runners-up.

Two Spanish La Liga sides progressed as winners – Barcelona and Real Madrid, whilst Atlético Madrid join their fellow countrymen as runners-up in their group.

Likewise, the German Bundesliga had two group winners – Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund, whilst Schalke 04 qualified for the knockout round by finishing second in their group.

Serie A and Ligue 1 both have two representatives in the latter stages of this season’s competition – Juventus and AS Roma from Italy, and Paris Saint-Germain and Lyon from France.

The remaining two teams making up the last 16 are FC Porto (Portugal) and Ajax (Netherlands).

FC Porto picked up the most points of any team in the group stage, taking 16 of a possible 18 in a group that consisted of Schalke, Galatasaray and Lokomotiv Moscow.

This was a big boost to Portugal’s average points per game in the group stage as Benfica were the only other Primeira Liga club competing. The two clubs combined to take 64% of the points on offer to them.

Only La Liga can boost a higher percentage as Barcelona (14), Atlético Madrid (13), Real Madrid (12) and Valencia (8) took a combined 65% of the points on offer to them.

Germany’s Bundesliga (57%) narrowly pipped the Premier League (56%) into third spot.

At the bottom of the table the Greek Superleague was only represented by AEK Athens whom lost all six of their group stage matches.

Slightly better performing countries were the Serbian SuperLiga, Swiss Super League and the Turkish Süper Lig – each represented by a sole club, each with identical records of one win, one draw and four defeats.

The overall table by association from the 2018-19 Champions League Group Stage is as follows:

AssociationWDLPoints %
Spain145565%
Portugal72364%
Germany118557%
England124856%
Italy115853%
Netherlands35439%
Czech Republic21339%
France48637%
Belgium13233%
Ukraine13233%
Russia31828%
Serbia11422%
Switzerland11422%
Turkey11422%
Greece0060%


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Can Southampton Turn Their Season Around?

Southampton football club have endured a horrid time as ofl ate, having barely avoided relegation last season and already sitting in the relegation zone as we near the halfway mark for this season

When former player Mark Hughes took over from Mauricio Pellegrino, who had lost 13, drawn 13 and won only 8 of his 34 matches in charge, Hughes’ aim was to secure safety for the Saints. They survived on the last day of the season thanks to a Stoke City victory away to Swansea City. Their survival wasn’t down to Hughes’ masterful tactics, but rather fortune that there were three teams worse than them in the league.

The New Season

Hughes remained in charge after the season ended and over the course of the summer, he added four new players to the squad. Stuart Armstrong arrived from Celtic in a £7 million deal, while the Saints also splashed out £13.5 million on young Manchester City goalkeeper Angus Gunn. Mohamed Elyounoussi joined from Swiss club FC Basel for £16 million and Jannik Vestergaard proved to be their biggest signing, as the defender joined from Borussia Mönchengladbach in a deal thought to be worth £18 million.

Southampton also saw several big names players, like Dušan Tadić, Jordy Clasie and Sofiane Boufal leave the club in this window, as they failed to live up to their price tags. Hughes was stamping his authority on the club and building a team to play his tactics in what he hoped would see a revival of his managerial career.

Unfortunately for Hughes, his Southampton side struggled for form and found themselves hovering around the relegation zone before the board acted and axed Hughes from his job just eight months after being hired. During Hughes’ time as Southampton manager, he won five of his 22 league games in charge, resulting in a win percentage of just 22.73.

The New Guy

Former RB Leipzig boss Ralph Hasenhüttl has been named as the new manager of the Saints and prior to officially taking over, he saw his new club fall to a 3-1 defeat away to Tottenham Hotspur. His first game in charge was away to Cardiff Cardiff, but that ended in defeat as Callum Paterson scored the only goal of the game to help the original favourites for the drop climb to 14th; four points above the relegation zone.

Hasenhüttl’s record at previous club RB Leipzig should encourage the Southampton fans, particularly after he guided the German club to a second place finish in the Bundesliga in his first season in charge. The club were the third highest scorers with 66 goals and conceded the third fewest goals, with the defence conceding only 39 goals. Their goal difference was the joint third best along with Hoffenheim’s at +27.

With a win percentage of 49.39 while in charge at Leipzig, Southampton fans should hold some hope that their new manager can guide them to safety this season. If Hasenhüttl is provided with the funds in January to buy a few additions, then, with his record as a manager, Southampton could climb out of the drop zone before the season comes to a close.

Then will come the real test for the manager. Survival is one thing, but for a club that just a few years ago was challenging for a place in the Europa League, it will be an aim for the near future. Whether or not he has the ability to take the club that far remains to be seen, but for now, he has to help the club pick up some points against Arsenal, Huddersfield town,West Ham United and Manchester City in their remaining December fixtures. Their current squad certainly isn’t the strongest and if Hasenhüttl doesn’t add to it in January then the Saints could end up playing their arch-rivals Portsmouth in the Championship next season, assuming the Blues secure promotion from League One.

 You can find all of the odds for the upcoming Premier League games here – https://www.betfair.com/exchange/plus/football/competition/10932509

20 Stats from Premier League Matchday 16 ft. Chelsea & Unai Emery

1 – In their 2-0 defeat at Chelsea, Manchester City conceded more than one goal for the first time this season.

2 – Manchester City went behind in a Premier League for only the second time this season.

2 – There were just two shots on target in the Arsenal 1-0 Huddersfield Town match – the fewest in any single Premier League game this term.

3 – Pep Guardiola has now lost three league games against Chelsea – more than against any other side as a manager.

6 – Wolverhampton Wanderers have now won six of their 16 Premier League games so far this season – more than they accomplished in the whole of their last top-flight campaign (5 in 2011-12).

7 – There were seven cards shown in the first half of Arsenal 1-0 Huddersfield (7 yellows) – the most in the first half of a single Premier League game since January 2011.

8 – Eden Hazard has assisted eight goals so far this season – the most in the Premier League, and one in each of his last three games.

12 – Chelsea are unbeaten in their last 12 Premier League matches at Stamford Bridge (W7, D5).

14 – Unai Emery have made 14 substitutions before the start of the second half this season.

16 – Arsenal have not led at half-time in any of their 16 Premier League games under Unai Emery (D12, L4 at HT).

16 – Tottenham’s tally of 36 points from 16 games is their best ever start to a Premier League campaign.

16 – Liverpool’s Alisson has never lost a Premier League game (W13, D3).

22 – Bournemouth’s Jefferson Lerma has been shown 22 yellow cards in his 38 Premier League appearances.

27 – Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has been directly involved in 27 goals in his 29 Premier League appearances (20 goals, 7 assists).

40 – Fulham have now conceded 40 goals in their opening 16 games this season – only Barnsley in 1997-98 (43) have conceded more at this stage of a Premier League season.

45 – It took 45 minutes for Chelsea to register their first shot of the match at Stamford Bridge against Manchester City.

49 – All 49 of Javier Hernández’s Premier League goals have come from inside the penalty area.

50 – Crystal Palace lost their 50th London derby in the Premier League (W21, D20).

67% – Everton’s Séamus Coleman has scored two own goals in his past three Premier League appearances against Watford.

80% – Cardiff City have won four of their last five Premier League games at the Cardiff City Stadium (L1).

100 – Juan Mata has now been involved in 100 goals in his Premier League career – 50 goals and 50 assists.

20 Stats from Premier League Matchday 15 ft. Man Utd & Aleksandar Mitrović

1 – Brighton & Hove Albion 3-1 Crystal Palace was the Seagulls’ first-ever midweek victory in the Premier League (D3, L3).

1 – None of Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino or Sadio Mané were in Liverpool’s starting lineup for the first time this season.

2 – Huddersfield Town have now won just two of their past 19 Premier League games (D6, L11).

2 – Lucas Pérez became the first West Ham United player to score a brace as a substitute in a Premier League game since Paulo Wanchope in April 2000 (against Newcastle United).

3 – Chelsea’s Ruben Loftus-Cheek has scored three goals in his last three Premier League appearances.

7 – Harry Kane has now scored seven goals in his previous seven Premier League appearances versus Southampton.

7 – Richarlison has scored seven goals in 13 Premier League appearances for Everton, two more than he managed in 38 games for Watford last season (5).

7 – Ryan Fraser has provided seven assists for Bournemouth so far this season – more than any other player in a single Premier League campaign for the Cherries.

7 – Manchester United’s Anthony Martial has scored seven goals in his last seven Premier League starts.

8 – Everton are now unbeaten in their last eight midweek Premier League matches (W4, D4).

9 – Each of Wolverhampton Wanderers’ previous nine Premier League goals at Molineux have been scored in the second half.

10% – Brighton have lost just one of their past 10 Premier League matches at the Amex Stadium (W5, D4).

13 – Jesse Lingard’s equaliser for Manchester United against Arsenal came just 13 seconds after the restart.

15 – Arsenal have not led at half-time in any of their 15 Premier League matches under Unai Emery (D11, L4 at HT).

15 – José Mourinho has only lost one of his 16 Premier League matches versus Arsenal (W7, D8).

18 – Newcastle United are winless in their last 18 midweek Premier League matches (D9, L9).

50 – James Milner has now scored in 50 different Premier League matches as not lost any of them.

58% – Seven of Newcastle United’s 12 goals this season have been headers – the highest ratio in the Premier League.

60% – Aleksandar Mitrović has been directly involved in 60% of Fulham’s 15 Premier League goals this season (7 goals, 2 assists) – the highest ratio for a club of any player in the top flight.

2007 – Aboubakar Kamara became the first French player to score a Premier League goal for Fulham since Philippe Christanval in January 2007.

20 Stats from Premier League Matchday 14 ft. Cardiff & Raheem Sterling

2 – Burnley have won just two of their past 19 Premier League games (D5, L12).

2 – N’Golo Kanté has as many Premier League assists this season as he did in his previous two Premier League seasons for Chelsea combined.

3 – Cardiff City have won three of the past four Premier League home games in which they have conceded the opening goal.

4 – Felipe Anderson has scored four goals in his last four Premier League games after netting only one in his first 10 appearances for West Ham United.

6 – Raheem Sterling has scored in all six of his Premier League appearances versus Bournemouth.

8 – Harry Kane has now scored eight goals in North London Premier League derbies – the joint most in the competition’s history (with Emmanuel Adebayor).

9 – Cardiff have picked up nine of their 11 points this season from losing positions.

14 – Chelsea 2-0 Fulham was the 14th occasion that a former Chelsea manager returned to Stamford Bridge in a Premier League game and failed to win (D5, L9).

14 – Since the start of the 2014-15 season, Jamie Vardy has won more penalties than any other player.

24 – Arsenal have scored more goals in the second half than any other team in the Premier League so far this season.

40% – Chelsea have scored 12 of their 30 goals in the final 15 minutes of games in the Premier League this season – more than any other side.

40 – Tottenham Hotspur have dropped more points from winning positions against Arsenal in the Premier League than they have against any other side in the competition.

55 – Mathias Jørgensen’s goal after 55 seconds for Huddersfield Town in their loss to Brighton & Hove Albion on Saturday was the fastest scored in the Premier League this season.

75% – Newcastle United have lost six of their eight matches at St James’ Park to start the season (W2).

85% – Manchester City are unbeaten in their last 20 Premier League matches, winning 17.

100% – Leicester City have won all five of their Premier League matches at home against Watford.

100% – Arsenal’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has scored with each of his last 10 shots on target.

100% – All 48 of Javier Hernández’s Premier League goals have been scored inside the penalty area.

395 – Theo Walcott has played 395 minutes of Premier League action at Anfield but has never scored.

1000 – Pedro’s opener for Chelsea was their 1,000th home goal in Premier League history.