Robert Lewandowski scores a historic hat-trick as Barça are five ahead of Viktoria Plzen



CNN

Barcelona got off to a perfect start to their 2022/23 Champions League campaign on Wednesday night. Robert Lewandowski Scored a historic hat-trick in a 5-1 victory over Viktoria Plzen.

New summer signing Franck Kessie went home to open the scoring before Lewandowski, who joined the Spanish giants from Bayern Munich during the transfer window, found the scoring touch.

The 34-year-old scored a brilliant first goal from the edge of the box, giving the Czech champions a glimmer of hope as Jan Sikora beat Marc-André ter Stegen on the half-time stroke.

But Lewandowski closed that door just minutes later, and his diving header to the back post restored Barça’s two-goal lead as the first half ticked on.

Midway through the second half, the Polish striker scored his first hat-trick for his new club, like a mirror image of his first goal, past a desperate Zindřich Staěk with a goal for Plzen.

Ferran Torres capped off a successful afternoon for Barça manager Xavi as he pounced home from a great chip from Ousmane Dembele.

Lewandowski’s hat-trick made him the first player to score a Champions League hat-trick for three different clubs: Borussia Dortmund, Bayern Munich and now Barça. He is also the ninth player to score a hat-trick in his Champions League debut for the club.

Xavi then called Lewandowski “insatiable” on goal.

“The way he trains, the way he helps the team, his humility, his work rate…I can’t praise him enough because it’s not just his hat-trick, it’s the way he works, the way he works. “It’s the tempo of the game,” Xavi said.

He added: They defended well and manned, but Dembele was great and Lewandowski made the difference. We are a good team and I am happy with the players who started as well as the substitutes. Everyone really wanted it. ”

The hat-trick performance continues Lewandowski’s stellar start in Spain. The striker has scored eight goals in his first five games.

It’s also the perfect warm-up for Lewandowski to face Bayern in the Champions League next week.

Lewandowski has scored 344 goals in 375 appearances for Bayern, the club’s second-highest tally behind Gerd Müller, before joining the Catalan giants in July for $46.1 million and $5.12 million. did.

Lewandowski celebrates Barça's fourth goal against Plzen.

In Madrid, Wednesday’s most dramatic match between Atlético Madrid and Porto came to a thrilling conclusion with three goals after 90 minutes at the Metropolitano stadium.

Porto were sent off by 10 men after Mehdi Taremi was shown a second yellow card for diving, ending a stodgy regular time.

Atlético defender Mario Hermoso seemed to have equalized in the 91st minute with a looped shot, but Porto were awarded a penalty in the 96th minute after Hermoso was deemed to have handled the ball.

Mateus Uribe scored to level the score, but the drama didn’t end there.

When the clock hit triple digits, Antoine Griezmann nodded from close range at 101 minutes, causing a wild scene of celebration as Atleti manager Diego Simeone rushed to the celebration with the players.

Griezmann is happy with the goal against Porto.

“It was difficult [for us] Go into the game and create chances.” Griezmann Said after that. “The pace of the match was slow, so I had to concentrate more, but in the end we did it in the last few minutes.”

It is the second time in Champions League history that three goals have been scored after 90 minutes, excluding extra time. Oddly enough, the first time it happened was in December last year when he was in a match between the same two teams.

Source: www.cnn.com

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