AC Milan and Olympique de Marseille moved through from the UEFA Champions League group stage with a match to spare on Tuesday while victories for FC Shakhtar Donetsk and AS Roma left them in strong positions.
Before tonight FC Bayern München, Chelsea FC and Real Madrid CF were certain of their places in the round of 16 draw. Milan and Marseille and have now joined them, meaning three more knockout berths will be available when these groups conclude on 8 December – with five teams able to take them.
Marseille made progress before the rest of tonight's games had started thanks to a 3-0 victory in the early kick-off at FC Spartak Moskva. OM are three points ahead of third-placed Spartak in Group F and cannot be caught thanks to their head-to-head record. Chelsea came from behind to beat MŠK Žilina 2-1 and have won the group thanks to the only remaining perfect record in any of the eight sections. Žilina's loss means Spartak will definitely play in the UEFA Europa League round of 32.
Milan emulated their fellow former European champions courtesy of a 2-0 win at AJ Auxerre securing second place in Group G. Madrid confirmed top spot by prevailing 4-0 at AFC Ajax. However, consolation for Ajax comes with the one-point advantage they have over Auxerre in the race of a UEFA Europa League place. To pip them Auxerre must secure more points at Madrid on 8 December than Ajax manage at Milan.
In Group E, Roma came from two goals behind against Bayern to win 3-2 and maintain a three-point advantage over third-placed FC Basel 1893, who ended CFR 1907 Cluj's European hopes with a 1-0 victory. To reach the last 16, Basel must win at group winners Bayern on Matchday 6 and hope Roma lose at CFR.
Nothing is yet settled in Group H – other than FK Partizan's elimination – after a dramatic night. Shakhtar scored three goals in 16 second-half minutes to win in Belgrade but are not definitely through after SC Braga struck twice late on to beat Arsenal FC 2-0. Shakhtar lead Arsenal and Braga by three points, with the Gunners second on head-to-head.
The Dontesk side will reach the knockout phase for the first time as long as they do not lose by three goals at home to the Portuguese debutants, who themselves will be aiming to secure more points than Arsenal achieve against Partizan. Matchday 5 concludes on Wednesday with Groups A to D; no teams are yet through from those sections.
Click on the scoreline for match report:
Bayern have won group
Chelsea have won group, Marseille through in second, Spartak to UEFA Europa League
Madrid have won group, Milan through in second
No qualifying positions decided
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