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Top Winners and Losers After Tuesday's Final Champions League Round of 16 Results

Timothy Rapp

You couldn't have asked for two more different UCL matches on Tuesday.

In one game, Manchester City put a touchdown on RB Leipzig, winning 7-0 (8-1 on aggregate). In the other, Inter Milan escaped with a scoreless draw against Porto, heading to the quarterfinals with a 1-0 advantage in aggregate.

Below, we'll break down the day's winners and losers.

Winner: Erling Haaland

He's just... different. See for yourself:

Yup, just your casual five-goal game for Haaland. Only his fifth hat trick this season. Only 25 games to reach 30 UCL goals, making him the fastest player in history to do so. Only the most goals in a season, ever, by a Manchester City player (folks, we are still in mid-March). Only the third player ever to score five goals in a UCL game.

The phrase "built different" gets tossed around too much. But in this case, it fits. There isn't anybody else quite like Haaland.

Loser: Leipzig's Defense

Hot knife, meet butter. And yes, Leipzig's defense was the butter.

This was a demolition. It's hard to be too rough on Leipzig—City have one of the most expensive and talented collections of players in the world, and they've put more than a few opposing defenses to shame.

But you still don't expect to see a Bundesliga side get humbled to this degree in a UCL match. It's going to be a long trip back to Germany.

Winner: Inter's Resolute Defense

Inter didn't have an easy job on Tuesday, needing to keep a threatening Porto side from scoring in its home stadium.

And yet, the Serie A giants were up to the task.

By the waning moments, the defending became furious. There were goal-line clearances, and goalkeeper André Onana pushing an attempt off the woodwork. The drama hung thick in the air with each Porto advance, but somehow, miraculously, Inter held on.

And now Inter supporters can breathe again, aided by a splash of late-game fortune. More on that below.

Loser: Porto's Desperate Attempts For An Equalizer

The flip side of that desperate defending was Porto's agonizingly close attempts on goal. In second-half stoppage time alone they hit the bar twice and had another attempt cleared off the line.

If you want to see sporting heartbreak unveil itself in real time, just watch the final seven minutes of this match. Porto will feel as though there was some sort of force field protecting the goal.

Sometimes, as the old cliche goes, it's better to be lucky than good. Porto will feel that sentiment proved true for Inter on Tuesday.


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