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UEFA Champions League: What to look out for tonight

The UEFA Champions League group stage is reaching its climax; what will happen next?

Sébastien Haller, Lionel Messi and Marco Reus

Six teams have already qualified, but there is plenty more to play for on Matchday 5 of the UEFA Champions League group stage.

Presented by Expedia, we pick out the potential headline-makers in Wednesday's games.

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Classic Matchday 5 moments

Wednesday 24 November

Group A: Man. City vs Paris, Club Brugge vs Leipzig
Group B: Atlético de Madrid vs AC Milan, Liverpool vs Porto
Group C: Beşiktaş vs Ajax (18:45 CET), Sporting CP vs Dortmund
Group D: Inter vs Shakhtar Donetsk (18:45 CET), Sheriff vs Real Madrid

All kick-offs 21:00 CET unless otherwise stated.

What to look out for?

Highlights: Paris 2-0 Man. City

City break for Paris
Pep Guardiola's team meet Paris, with Phil Foden looking forward to a genuine test of strength. "Paris is going to be a really big game and we want to win it," said the midfielder. Mauricio Pochettino's men are unbeaten in Group A, but local paper Le Parisien was unimpressed by their 2-2 draw at Leipzig last time out (headline: "Paris didn't deserve better"). The right result in England could quell any further discontent. "We need to have the desire to go there and win the game," said Pochettino. "The aim is to qualify and we'll go there with that idea in mind."

Highlights: Real Madrid 1-2 Sheriff

Same again for Sheriff?
Sheriff's 2-1 win away to Real Madrid on Matchday 2 was widely hailed as one of the greatest upsets in Champions League history, and match winner Sébastien Thill has admitted to watching his sensational 90th-minute half-volley "over 100 times" since. The result also left the Moldovan newcomers top of Group D but they have now slipped to third as they prepare to host Madrid – themselves now at the summit. With Inter just a point ahead of Sheriff, Thill and Co are pulling for a repeat, but will lightning strike twice?

Highlights: Dortmund 1-0 Sporting

Showdown in Lisbon
With Ajax already through to the last 16, Sporting CP and Dortmund's Lisbon encounter assumes a critical status for two sides locked together on six points in Group C. The hosts lost the reverse fixture in Germany 1-0 so know that against a Dortmund team deprived of several players, including Erling Haaland, a victory by two goals will secure qualification. Any kind of win will do for the visitors, meanwhile, whereas a draw would extend the drama until Matchday 6.

Further ahead?

• After picking up their first Group B point on Matchday 4, AC Milan may have an eye on Atalanta's great escape of 2019/20 when the Serie A club recovered from a similarly grim start to make it to the round of 16. With Liverpool already through, and Porto and Atlético not out of reach, that escape route is open.

Lewandowski's Champions League hat-tricks

• Robert Lewandowski leads the scorers' rankings for this season after taking his tally to nine goals in Bayern's 2-1 win at Dynamo Kyiv on Tuesday. His nearest rival, Ajax's Sébastien Haller, is on seven. Can the Polish international finish top of the charts for a second time, having hit 15 in Bayern's title-winning 2019/20 campaign?

Tuesday 23 November

Group E: Dynamo Kyiv 1-2 Bayern, Barcelona 0-0 Benfica
Group F: Villarreal 0-2 Man. United, Young Boys 3-3 Atalanta
Group G: Sevilla 2-0 Wolfsburg, LOSC 1-0 Salzburg
Group H: Malmö 1-1 Zenit, Chelsea 4-0 Juventus

Key dates

Group stage
14/15 September: Matchday 1
28/29 September: Matchday 2
19/20 October: Matchday 3
2/3 November: Matchday 4
23/24 November: Matchday 5
7/8 December: Matchday 6

This season's final takes place in Saint Petersburg
This season's final takes place in Saint PetersburgUEFA via Getty Images

Knockout stage
13 December 2021: Round of 16 draw
15/16/22/23 February & 8/9/15/16 March: Round of 16
18 March: Quarter-final & semi-final draws
5/6 & 12/13 April: Quarter-finals
26/27 April & 3/4 May: Semi-finals
28 May: Final (Gazprom Arena, Russia)

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