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Football :

Asked about the future Champions League confrontation against Barça, and his main danger Lionel Messi, Gennaro Gattuso did not hide his concern. Not without derision.

At the end of the victory of Naples against the Lazio this Saturday evening (3-1), Gennaro Gattuso and his men could finally turn the page of a disappointing season but saved however by a victory in the Cup, synonymous with qualification for the next Europa League.

The Serie A over, all attention is now focused on the prestigious Champions League. Next Saturday, the Partenopei will go to Camp Nou to challenge Barcelona in the round of 16 second leg. On February 25 in the first leg, the two teams left back to back (1-1).

In the Catalan ogre, there is a certain Lionel messi. Coaches around the world would like to know the formula for reducing its radiation. Gennaro Gattuso, as rough as he had been during his career, he had not found the recipe. “I tried to catch it when I was playing in Milan and I was 10-15 kilos less than today,” he said amusedly. With the result that we know because “La Pulga” has never been eliminated by the Rossonero club in the LDC.

“I can only score Messi in my dreams. Or on my son’s PlayStation »

The Neapolitan coach overbid, exaggerating the situation “I can only score Messi in my dreams. Or on my son’s PlayStation ”. During the round go to San Paolo, the teammates of Kalidou Koulibaly had done pretty well. The only Barcelona achievement had been the work of Antoine Griezmann.

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Previous Next 1/12

Navas (7/10)

He did not have to save his team, but he won on a crushed recovery from Cornet (37th) then a free kick from the same left-hander (80th). Before pushing back OL’s 6th shot on goal.

2/12

Kurzawa (5)

Established on the right of the defense, he wanted to do well, especially defensively. He took his hallway but without being able to bring danger.

3/12

Thiago Silva (5.5)

Serene in aerial duels and in the recovery. He was nevertheless overtaken on several occasions, by Aouar (27th) and Dembélé (55th). Victim of cramps, he did not play overtime.

4/12

Kimpembe (6)

He made his speed speak, especially in the face of Depay’s mobility. He made a good intervention on a Lyon counter-attack (53rd), before losing a very dangerous ball in front of Depay (60th). He countered Traoré well in overtime (96th). Good job.

5/12

Bakker (4.5)

Despite his power, he quickly suffered defensively. He was notably lugged on a one-two between Depay and Dubois (45th + 4). His offensive contribution was very weak.

6/12

Gueye (4.5)

Lots of races, in the defensive phase as in the game, but he was imprecise in his passes before sending a nice shot out by Lopes (43rd). Replaced in the 58th minute by Herrera, author of a big entry.

7/12

Marquinhos (6.5)

Still as valuable to recovery as number 6. On relaunch, he manages to extricate himself from the opposing pressure most of the time, which makes him a valid option for Tuchel in this role of sentry.

8/12

Verratti (8)

Physically regenerated, he was enormous in his role as a torchbearer, with defensive presence and obviously impressive ball outings. He also created several hot situations by throwing Neymar or by infiltrating the opposing last 30 meters to try to find his teammates. And this until overtime.

9/12

Di Maria (4)

The Argentine left-hander appeared to be very weak physically. He waited 20 minutes before initiating some offensive movements. Then he was unable to conclude on his own in a counter-attack (32nd, 45th + 1, 74th).

10/12

Neymar (5)

If he was dangerous at the start of the match with two strikes, the “Ney” provoked a lot but often lacked application with the ball to the foot, even if he suffered a lot of faults. His few openings did not give a goal. Replaced at the peak at the hour mark, he was not able to conclude (61st, 86th).

11/12

Icardi (3)

Unsurprisingly, he was transparent. He didn’t pick up much for support and didn’t make a lot of calls. It is launched full axis by Di Maria but being offside (35th). Called back to the bench in the 58th minute and strapped to the thigh …

12/12

Sarabia (not rated)

The Spaniard, positioned right winger when he entered the game (58th), had little space to express himself. But he sprang in front of goal, on a cross from Bakker (75th) or an opening from Verratti (90th) and it was already more than what Icardi did …

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Avalanche score 3 third-period goals to beat Coyotes 3-0

EDMONTON, Alberta (AP) — Nazem Kadri and J.T. Compher scored 10 seconds apart in the third period, Philipp Grubauer stopped 14 shots and the Colorado Avalanche opened the Stanley Cup playoffs with a 3-0 victory over the Arizona Coyotes on Wednesday.

Colorado dominated the Coyotes through the first two periods, outshooting them 29-7, yet couldn’t get anything past goalie Darcy Kuemper.

Grubauer made the saves when he had to for his second career playoff shutout and Kadri broke a scoreless tie by punching in a rebound on a power play with 7 minutes left.

The Avalanche broke it open from there.

Compher scored on a backhanded rebound and Mikko Rantanen made it three goals in 1:23 to give Colorado the lead in the best-of-seven series heading into Game 2 on Friday.

Kuemper stopped 152 shots in four games against Nashville in the Stanley Cup qualifiers and was superb again, making several spectacular saves to keep the Coyotes in it. He finished with 37 saves, but the Coyotes generated little on offense.

Arizona benefited when when the NHL expanded the postseason bubbles to 12 teams per conference and took advantage, knocking off Nashville 3-1 in the Stanley Cup qualifiers. Kuemper was superb, stopping 152 shots, and the Coyotes had production throughout the lineup, with 16 players notching at least a point, 11 scoring a goal.

The Avalanche presented a much bigger problem.

The No. 2 seed in the West, Colorado is one of the NHL’s most dynamic scoring teams, led by Hart Trophy finalist Nathan MacKinnon, and has scoring depth across its lines.

The Avalanche had the Coyotes on their heels in the first period, peppering Kuemper with 13 shots while Arizona managed just three.

The Coyotes thrive in the rope-a-dope, though, and escaped the first period with a scoreless tie.

Arizona had some better stretches in the second period, yet had to be bailed out by numerous difficult saves by Kuemper to keep it scoreless while being outshot 16-4.

Colorado finally wore down the Coyotes in the third period, turning a tight game into a runaway in a span of 83 seconds.

Notes: Coyotes C Nick Schmaltz missed his fifth straight game with a head injury, but could return soon. … Colorado went 1 for 2 on the power play, Arizona 0 for 2. … Arizona G Antti Raanta missed his third straight game since suffering a pregame injury before Game 2 against Nashville.

UP NEXT

Game 2 is Friday in Edmonton.

___

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