Goals define matches. Goals are the difference between winning and losing. And scoring is probably the most difficult art to master on the football pitch. Great goals come along once in a while, and the Champions League 2018-19 had plenty of them. We take a look at the 10 goals that got us staring in awe in last year’s Champions League clashes.
10. Luis Suarez, FC Barcelona 3 – 0 Liverpool, Camp Nou, Semifinal 1st Leg
Liverpool came up against Lionel Messi’s Barcelona at the Camp Nou in the 1st leg of the semi-final. Messi stole the show with a couple of fantastic goals, but it is Luis Suarez’s deft finish in the first half that set the ball rolling for the Catalans.
A low drilled cross from Barca left-back was put in by Luis Suarez at the near post, his goal coming against his former side at an important time.
9. Phillipe Coutinho, Manchester United 0 – 3 FC Barcelona, Old Trafford, Quarterfinals, 1st Leg
It does not get better if you’re a former Liverpool star, representing FC Barcelona, and you come to Old Trafford and score a beautiful goal past the best goalkeeper in the World, arguably David de Gea.
Coutinho did just that and more. A brilliant piece of football saw Barca get in behind the United midfield before Countinho stamped his authority with a beautiful curler into the top corner.
8. Ousmane Dembele, FC Barcelona 1 – 1 Tottenham Hotspurs, Camp Nou, Group Stage
He’s had an on-off time at Camp Nou, but French youngster Ousmane Dembele came good on one of the biggest nights for Barca, as they trailed by a goal at home.
Dembele picked up the ball from the halfway line, sped past a couple of defenders before beating Hugo Lloris at the near post. A brilliant individual goal coming of a wonderful counter-attack.
7. Raheem Sterling, Manchester City 6 – 0 Shakhtar Donetsk, Etihad Stadium, Group Stage
Raheem Sterling is a bonafide star at City. He’s improved his game by leaps and bounds under Pep Guardiola.
His goal against Shakhtar in the Group stage stands out as an example of his class as he received the ball from midfield, saw off two defenders, found some space just outside the box and delivered a wonderful shot into the far corner. All his own doing, really.
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6. Kylian Mbappe, Manchester United 0 – 2 Paris St. Germain, Old Trafford, Round of 16
Mbappe is a goal machine. He’s delivered goals for Monaco, for France and now for PSG. He scored all kinds of goals.
His goal against Manchester United in the 1st leg of the Round of 16 clash between the teams was a masterclass in terms of timing his run, anticipating the cross and burying it into the bottom corner.
The goal came as a result of a fantastic counter-attack, the ones Mbappe specializes in scoring from.
5. Leroy Sane, Manchester City 2 – 1 Hoffenheim, Etihad Stadium, Group Stage
Pep Guardiola’s Man City were staring a dull draw that would leave them in a precarious position in the group against German opposition when his own German superstar Leroy Sane tilted the scales in his favor.
Sane took on a free kick 30 yards out, hitting the ball with power and precision as it swerved,dipped and found its way past the keeper into the net. 2-1 in favor of City.
4. Ivan Rakitic, Tottenham Hotspurs 2 – 4 FC Barcelona, Wembley Stadium, Group Stage
Rakitic scored one of the best goals of his life as he dispatched a wonderful volley past Hugo Lloris after Countinho’s volley was saved by the French and Tottenham skipper and stopper.
The match had a total of 6 goals yet Rakitic’s goal was the one that really stood out.
3. Sadio Mane, Bayern Munich 1 – 3 FC Liverpool, Allianz Arena, Round of 16
Liverpool had to win in Munich to shove aside heavyweights Bayern and make their way into the Quarterfinals of the Champions League.
The Bavarians are extremely strong at home, but Jurgen Klopp’s side made the best use of the resources available to them, especially the likes of Sadio Mane, who scored two on the night to come away with a 3-1 victory.
Mane’s first goal, one where he controlled a superb aerial ball and held off a defender before chipping it over the goalie Manuel Neuer, was the pick of the day.
2. Lionel Messi, FC Barcelona 3 – 0 Liverpool, Camp Nou, Semifinal 1st Leg
Any goals list is incomplete without Messi in it. And the Argentine makes his place on this list too, as his stunning freekick against Liverpool at the Camp Nou stands out among the three goals Barcelona put past Liverpool that night.
The freekick had everything Messi written about it, great placement, precision and accuracy to beat Alisson and find its way into the top corner.
1. Cristiano Ronaldo, Manchester United 2 – 2 Juventus, Old Trafford, Group Stage
CR7 was welcomed back to Old Trafford a hero on matchday three of the Champions League as Juve faced Man United.
He reiterated his star status and excellent technical abilities yet another time as he scored the best goal of the Champions League, a volley past David de Gea off a cross over his shoulder while seeing off United defender Victor Lindelof.
There’s nothing that can bog down this man.