Champions League matchday four: what to get excited about!

The picture is becoming clearer for the 32 sides heading into the second half of the group stage. What headlines will matchday four bring?

Antoine Griezmann and Atlético are looking to bounce back from defeat in Dortmund
Antoine Griezmann and Atlético are looking to bounce back from defeat in Dortmund ©AFP/Getty Images

There will be a quick renewal of rivalries with the matchday three fixtures reversed this time around. Qualification or elimination is also possible for some; we pick out the games where drama is likely to unfold.

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Matchday four fixtures (21.00CET unless stated)

Tuesday 6 November
Group A: Monaco v Club Brugge (18.55CET), Atlético Madrid v Borussia Dortmund
Group B: Tottenham Hotspur v PSV Eindhoven, Internazionale Milano v Barcelona
Group C: Crvena zvezda v Liverpool (18.55CET), Napoli v Paris Saint-Germain
Group D: Porto v Lokomotiv Moskva, Schalke v Galatasaray

Wednesday 7 November
Group E: Bayern München v AEK Athens, Benfica v Ajax
Group F: Lyon v Hoffenheim, Manchester City v Shakhtar Donetsk
Group G: CSKA Moskva v Roma (18.55CET), Viktoria Plzeň v Real Madrid
Group H: Valencia v Young Boys (18.55CET), Juventus v Manchester United

Three things to look out for this week

Watch the best goals from matchday three
Watch the best goals from matchday three

1) Atlético and Diego Simeone are far from familiar with heavy reverses. The 4-0 humbling at Dortmund on matchday three equalled the Spanish side's worst result in the competition and was their first four-goal defeat during the Argentinian's 391 games at the helm. However, Los Colchoneros' ability to bounce back should provide cause for optimism: Real Madrid beat Atleti 3-0 twice in 2016/17, but they responded with three wins and a draw from their next four matches on each occasion, while four consecutive victories followed a 3-0 loss at Villarreal.

2) Unlike their city rivals, Real Madrid are not among the eight teams that can book their qualification with two games to spare but a win in the Czech Republic will put the holders in sight of getting past the group stage for the 22nd season running. However, the focus will just as much be on their bench, where Santiago Solari, past of their 2002 victory as a player, is expected to still be in interim charge after the dismissal of Julen Lopetegui. The last time a player from the 2002 final team took over mid-season as Madrid coach after stepping up from the reserves, Zinédine Zidane led them to the 2015/16 UEFA Champions League title, and the two after that.

Thierry Henry in his first #UCL campaign for Monaco
Thierry Henry in his first #UCL campaign for Monaco©AFP/Getty Images

3) You have to go back to October 1997 for Thierry Henry's home debut in this competition – and it was a sign of things to come that he scored twice in Monaco's 4-0 victory against Leverkusen. The Principality side will hope to draw on the experience of France's record scorer when Henry takes charge of them in Europe at the Stade Louis II for the first time 21 years later. Inspiration is certainly required as the 1-1 draw at Club Brugge on matchday three means Monaco – semi-finalists in 2016/17 – are still without a win in the section.

How can I follow on UEFA.com?

UEFA.com has reporters at every UEFA Champions League game this season, providing regular updates on social media – Instagram, Facebook and Twitter – and in our MatchCentres. There is live text and photo coverage of every fixture, plus a live radio show, with reaction and highlights to follow.

How can I get involved?

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What's new for 2018/19?

This is the first season of staggered kick-off times during the UEFA Champions League group stage, with at least two games per night getting under way at 18:55CET. That's not to mention a fancy new brand identity, based on a concept called 'Highlighting moments that make the ultimate stage'.

What's not new?

Thirty-two teams vying to lift the most prestigious trophy in European club football. The top two in all eight groups progress to the knockout stage, with two-legged round of 16, quarter-final and semi-final ties whittling it down to just two finalists. Talking of which ...

When and where's the final?

Saturday 1 June 2019 at 21:00CET, at Atlético's home – the Estadio Metropolitano in Madrid. Stick it in your diary.

Last but not least ...

Come approximately 18:50CET on Tuesday, it will be that time again. The champions ...

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