Chelsea do not hold the shock in Dortmund, Benfica on the right track

Chelsea, despite the contribution of some of its many winter recruits, did not hold the shock in the overheated lair of Borussia Dortmund (1-0) while Benfica Lisbon returned from Bruges with a success perhaps to be decisive (2-0), Wednesday during the 1/8th final first leg of the Champions League.

The Blues, who spent nearly 300 million euros during the winter transfer window, released three of their new players at Signal Iduna Park at kick-off (Joao Felix, Mykhaïlo Mudryk, Enzo Fernandez) but the result is enough to disappoint the bosses of the club, led by the American Todd Boehly.

Already battered in the league (10th), the London club could not resist the fury of Borussia, as always carried by its boiling hot public and returned to just three points from Bayern Munich in the Bundesliga.

Despite a particularly comfortable Joao Felix who found the post in the first period, Graham Potter’s troops, although generally dominating, were surprised by a supersonic counter from Karim Adeyemi (63rd), who easily played the Argentine world champion Enzo Fernandez, biggest transfer in Premier League history (121 million euros).

With only one goal behind, Chelsea are still able to turn the tide, on March 7 at Stamford Bridge, in the return match.

In the other meeting of the evening, Benfica Lisbon may have done the hardest part by bringing back a victory for Bruges thanks to goals scored by Joao Mario from the penalty spot (51st) and David Neres (88th). The Portuguese team, which completed the first phase at the top of Group H ahead of PSG, seems very well placed to qualify for the quarter-finals.

Double winner of the event (1961, 1962), Benfica would thus reach this stage of the competition for the second year in a row.

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