West Ham have signed Tomas Soucek on a permanent transfer after a successful loan spell.

Soucek has agreed to leave Slavia Prague and sign a four-year deal with the Hammers, having impressed since arriving on a temporary basis in January.

The 25-year-old midfielder made 12 Premier League appearances for West Ham, contributing three goals to help steer them to safety.

According to Slavia, West Ham were obligated to make the move permanent after they retained their top-flight status.

"I'm delighted that Tomas has signed his permanent contract to secure his long-term future at the club," said Hammers boss David Moyes.

"When I came in, we talked about needing another midfield player, to help Declan Rice and Mark Noble, and I think he's been a really good fit for us.

"He's a terrific lad with very good physical capabilities. He has scored some really important goals for us, against Chelsea, Newcastle and Watford.

"We're glad he's going to be a West Ham player for a good period to come."

Soucek said in a Slavia statement: "I must be satisfied with the last half a year. I have heard a lot about how January transfers aren't the easiest choice, and on top of that I was joining the club fighting to avoid relegation.

"I am glad we made it together and we secured the Premier League spot with two games to go. I am happy that my performance could help and that my loan spell was successful. It gives me strength for the following seasons. I think we deserve to be higher than now.

"Of course, I have mixed feelings. I am leaving Slavia where I grew up and played for my entire career. But I am leaving for Premier League, my dream competition."

West Ham have completed the signing of Czech Republic midfielder Tomas Soucek from Slavia Prague.

Soucek, 24, has initially joined on loan, with West Ham holding an option to make the move permanent at the end of the season.

David Moyes' side confirmed the deal on Wednesday ahead of their home match with Premier League leaders Liverpool.

"We are delighted to welcome Tomas to West Ham United," Moyes said of Soucek, who has 25 international caps.

"He gives us a lot of different qualities, but most importantly he fits the profile of the player we want to bring to the club. He is young and hungry but with an established pedigree and proven talent."

Soucek has scored 12 goals this season, including strikes against Inter and Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League.

He netted on 18 occasions last season as he helped Slavia to a league and cup double on his way to being named the Czech top-flight's Player of the Year.

Moyes added: "He was captain of Slavia Prague, he's played as a defensive midfielder but he's scored a lot of goals as an attacking midfielder as well. 

"At the moment he ticks a lot of boxes. We need to give him the opportunity and time to settle in but we are confident he will prove to be a strong addition to the squad."

Soucek is West Ham's second signing of the January transfer window after the addition of goalkeeper Darren Randolph.

Lucien Favre saluted goalkeeper Roman Burki and the rest of his squad after Borussia Dortmund squeezed through to the Champions League's last 16.

A nerve-jangling 2-1 home win over Slavia Prague and Inter's late loss to Barcelona saw Dortmund finish second in Group F on Tuesday.

Tomas Soucek cancelled out Jadon Sancho's opener before Julian Brandt restored the Bundesliga side's lead just after the hour.

Julian Weigl's subsequent dismissal for two bookable offences led to a tense finale, but Burki brilliantly denied Milan Skoda and Abdulla Yusuf Helal to secure all three points.

"Everyone, without a single exception, played a part in this win," Favre said.

"It was a crazy match. Constant chances. We had to win this game – it's what we were aiming for and we did it, but it was difficult.

"Slavia were very tough as expected. They had drawn their previous games, we hadn't.

"Roman Burki was unbelievable, he was fantastic. But just to reiterate: we achieved this victory together. We created a lot of scoring opportunities and should've been winning more than 1-0.

"We were too open at certain points. It's a win but we need to continue to work hard."

Burki made seven saves in total to confirm Dortmund's place in the knockout rounds at the expense of Inter, who succumbed to an Ansu Fati winner in the 86th minute at San Siro.

"The whole team felt a huge sense of relief after the final whistle," Burki said.

"Hardly anything had filtered through to us. It was only when the spectators were celebrating shortly before the end that we looked at the screen. That gave us an additional boost at that point.

"We're a team, we battled well. It was clear that I could be in for a busy evening. But that's what I'm there for – perhaps today I might even say that I did fairly well."

Bottom-placed Slavia exit the competition without a win but coach Jindrich Trpisovsky was delighted with how his side equipped themselves in Germany.

"My boys gave a performance that was worthy of the Champions League," he said. "I am proud that they showed such a display against Dortmund, who were playing for everything."

Borussia Dortmund qualified for the last 16 of the Champions League thanks to a 2-1 win over Slavia Prague on Tuesday.

Inter's 2-1 loss to Barcelona means Lucien Favre's side finished three points above the Italians in Group F and will be in the hat for the knockout draw, which takes place in Nyon on Monday.

The impressive Jadon Sancho opened the scoring in the 10th minute before Tomas Soucek scored a deserved equaliser for the Czech side shortly before half-time.

However, Julian Brandt sealed the win with a powerful strike shortly after the hour mark, although Dortmund had Roman Burki to thank for their progression after a string of stunning saves either side of Julian Weigl's dismissal for a second yellow card with 13 minutes remaining.

Sancho and Mats Hummels went close inside the opening five minutes for the hosts, while at the other end Burki did well to keep out Peter Olayinka's close-range header.

Winger Sancho was not to be denied in the 10th minute, the England international slotting home from 10 yards after being teed up by Marco Reus, who saw a low effort repelled by the outstretched foot of Ondrej Kolar soon after.

Kolar again denied a clean-through Reus soon after before Burki superbly pushed over Lukas Masopust's deflected effort.

There was little the Dortmund goalkeeper could do to stop Soucek equalising two minutes before the interval, the midfielder sweeping home after Masopust's lofted ball had ripped open the home defence.

Brandt fizzed narrowly over and Raphael Guerreiro forced Kolar into a low save as Dortmund started the second half on top.

Sancho turned provider as Dortmund regained the lead in the 61st minute, Brandt latching onto his precise pass and lashing past Kolar from a tight angle.

Slavia continued to press, though, with Burki forced into a flying save to deny Milan Skoda while Ondrej Kudela inexplicably heading wide from point-blank range at the back post.

Weigl received his marching orders for a second bookable offence before Burki made another magnificent save to keep out Abdulla Yusuf Helal's header as Dortmund advanced.

Champions League holders Liverpool need at least a point against Salzburg to secure their progression from Group E, though they will come up against an Erling Haaland in sensational form.

Salzburg's youngster has found the net in all of their group games so far this season and will become the first player to convert in his first six Champions League appearances should he score for Salzburg against the Reds.

Barcelona have top spot in Group F secured but Inter still have it all to play for on Tuesday as they look to edge out Borussia Dortmund, and Antonio Conte's side have no Lionel Messi to worry about, with Ernesto Valverde resting Barca's talisman.

Chelsea will look to end a five-match winless run at home in the Champions League to ensure their place in the last 16, while Dortmund are aiming to reach the second round in consecutive seasons for the first time since 2015.

Salzburg v Liverpool 

8 - Salzburg's Haaland has scored eight goals from five appearances in this season's Champions League. No player has ever scored in their first six matches in the competition.

11 - Since the start of the 2017-18 campaign, the two players with the most Champions League assists are Liverpool duo Roberto Firmino and James Milner, with 11 each.

16 - Only Tottenham (17) and Bayern Munich (21) have scored more goals than Salzburg's 16 in this season's competition.

2 - Liverpool have only won two of their 11 most recent Champions League away group stage games, losing four of the past five. The Reds last won consecutive group matches on the road in the competition back in September 2008.

Napoli v Genk

6 - Carlo Ancelotti appears to be under pressure at Napoli, though his side are unbeaten in their past six home matches in the Champions League.

14 - Dries Mertens, who wears number 14 for Napoli, has been involved in 14 goals in his past 14 Champions League starts, scoring 10 times and providing four assists.

Inter v Barcelona

0 - Inter have never lost a home game against Spanish teams in the Champions League or European Cup.

5 - Lautaro Martinez is aiming to become the first Inter player to score in five successive Champions League/European Cup appearances.

0 - Barca have failed to score in two Champions League matches this season. Never before in the competition have they fired blanks in three group games in a single campaign.

Borussia Dortmund v Slavia Prague

13 - Dortmund are unbeaten in 13 of their past 15 Champions League group stage matches at Signal Iduna Park, winning eight times.

3 - Julian Brandt already has three assists for Dortmund in Group F. The playmaker failed to assist a single Champions League goal for Bayer Leverkusen in 21 appearances between 2014 and 2017.

22 - Slavia have failed to score with each of their 22 most recent shots from open play in the Champions League, with their goal in a 3-1 defeat to Inter on matchday coming via a penalty by Tomas Soucek.

Benfica v Zenit

1 - Victory for Zenit would see the Russian side reach the knockout stages in successive appearances in the Champions League for the first time.

29 - Both teams have scored 29 per cent of their Champions League goals from outside of the box so far this season.

Lyon v RB Leipzig

88 - Leipzig have scored 88 per cent of their Champions League goals this season in the second half of matches, while their only goal in the first half came in added time against Zenit.

80 - Dayot Upamecano has made 80 progressive ball carries upfield this season in the UEFA Champions League - more than any other player.

Chelsea v Lille

5 - Chelsea are winless in their past five Champions League games at Stamford Bridge. It is their longest run without a home win in the competition.

10 - Willian has netted 10 goals for Chelsea in the tournament. If he scores against Lille, it would make him their outright fourth-highest scorer in the competition, behind Didier Drogba (36), current coach Frank Lampard (23) and Nicolas Anelka (12).

1 - Lille have taken just one point in the Champions League this season. Under the current group stage format, the only French side with fewer in a single campaign in the competition was Marseille in 2013-14 (0).

Ajax v Valencia

9 - Since the start of last season, only three teams have managed more wins in the Champions League than Ajax, who have nine victories under their belts in that time.

52 - Excluding own goals, Hakim Ziyech has either scored or assisted 52 per cent of Ajax's goals in the Champions League in 2019.

143 - Quincy Promes averages a goal every 143 minutes in the Champions League, placing him behind only Ruud van Nistelrooy (109) in terms of Dutch players in the competition.

Borussia Dortmund midfielder Axel Witsel has been ruled out for the rest of the year after being hospitalised by an "awkward fall" at his home.

Witsel, who played a full part in Saturday's 5-0 win over Fortuna Dusseldorf, underwent oral and facial surgery at Klinikzentrum Nord Hospital over the weekend.

The Belgium international has been discharged from hospital but will miss at least four matches ahead of the mid-season break, starting with Tuesday's Champions League clash with Slavia Prague.

"Witsel will sadly be out for the rest of this year," BVB boss Lucien Favre confirmed at Monday's pre-match news conference.

"I was told about this yesterday morning. We could not speak to him. He was in hospital.

"But there is one positive thing - he's already back home. We can't change it now. It's a shame for him, a shame for us. He's one of the most important players for us."

Asked to provide more details on the injury, Dortmund media director Sascha Fligge said the midfielder "fell awkwardly at home".

Witsel has scored three goals in 21 appearances for Dortmund this season.

Antonio Conte says Inter's run of just one defeat in nine matches has led to a "feel-good factor" at San Siro but he has warned his players against complacency ahead of their clash with struggling SPAL.

Inter are second in Serie A, one point behind leaders Juventus, as they prepare to face 19th-placed SPAL on Sunday, and Conte was in ebullient mood in his pre-match press conference.

The Nerazzurri returned to form in the Champions League by beating Slavia Prague 3-1 on Wednesday and victory at home against SPAL would extend Inter's Serie A winning streak to five matches.

Conte was asked how he intends to maintain his side's strong form in order to keep Inter's title challenge on course, and he called for everyone at the club to keep their feet on the ground.

"In the league and in Europe we are doing very well," Conte told reporters. "In Europe we have played with real pride. Even when we lost we gave a good performance.

"We have always played every game on level terms. In Europe the situation is in our hands again. That is very encouraging.

"I am very optimistic and pleased with the feel-good factor. However, we cannot get carried away and must stay grounded. We need to make sure we are realistic.

"We have lots of confidence and that should spur us on. Let's beat SPAL and keep going. I want to see the same spirit and desire. I want us to be hungry."

Martinez has already matched his league goal tally from last season by scoring six this term and Lukaku has endeared himself to Inter fans with 10 goals in 13 league appearances since his £75million transfer from Manchester United.

"Lautaro Martinez and Romelu Lukaku aren't the same strikers who started the season," said Conte.

"They are both atypical modern strikers, as they can be a centre-forward or a support striker, they work hard for their team-mates and are really developing an understanding with each other.

"They have grown a lot. They have come a long way since the start of the season. They have a good understanding. They are working very well and very hard.

"The goals are coming which is important. But the whole team play their part. I am attentive at both ends of the pitch. However, there is still lots of work to do."

Inter head coach Antonio Conte believes a capacity San Siro crowd can roar his side into the Champions League knockout phase after a thrilling late win over Slavia Prague.

Conte's men clinched a 3-1 win over Slavia on Wednesday to move up to second in Group F, ahead of third-placed Borussia Dortmund on head-to-head record.

Two goals from Lautaro Martinez and one from Romelu Lukaku secured the points for Inter, although they had to wait until late the final nine minutes of the game to seal the win.

Inter know victory over Barcelona – who have already qualified as group winners – in their final fixture on December 10, on home turf, will book their place in the last 16.

Conte told Sky Sport Italia: "The only way to stay alive and give a sense to the final fixture with Barcelona was to win and we did it. 

"We're pleased, as we wanted to be alive and kicking to the final game and that's the situation. Our fate is in our hands.

"Now it's going to be a tough match, but we can count on 70,000 people who will push us on at San Siro. We were much more of a team against Slavia."

Conte felt the blossoming strike partnership between Martinez and Lukaku was instrumental in the victory but believes the pair have not yet shown their full potential.

He added: "The strikers were decisive and I am very happy for them. They fought it out physically with the Slavia players, which they had struggled to do last time.

"We are talking about two players who are not yet complete. Lukaku has a lot of potential, he still needs to be encouraged. Lautaro is only 22 years old. 

"But after four months we see the difference. Players in general are stronger, they are growing clearly."

Martinez's brace took his tally to five goals in this season's Champions League as he scored for the fourth game in succession, while Lukaku's strike was his first in the competition for Inter.

Although he is leading the European goalscoring charts Martinez says neither he nor Lukaku are concerned with individual totals.

"I always say it doesn't matter who scores, as long as the team gets the goal and wins," he said.

"We work every day to help create that unity off the field and on it. Romelu is a great guy and we really get along, we both care more about the team than our own goals.

"We made a lot of progress since the Borussia Dortmund game, where we dominated the first half and fell away. 

"We're proving that we can have our say in this Champions League and believe we can reach the Round of 16.”

Inter's Champions League fate is in their own hands after Lautaro Martinez and Romelu Lukaku inspired a 3-1 win at Slavia Prague on Wednesday.

Martinez's crisp finish put Inter ahead before they saw a second goal chalked off and Slavia instead awarded a penalty, which Tomas Soucek converted to tee up a draw that would do little for either side.

But late strikes from the outstanding Lukaku and Martinez secured the precious points for Inter as they bid to reach the knockout stage.

Antonio Conte's men are second in Group F on seven points, ahead of third-placed Borussia Dortmund on head-to-head.

Inter will qualify if they beat Barcelona in a mammoth San Siro showdown on matchday six, while Dortmund host bottom side Slavia and hope for a Nerazzurri slip-up.

 

Lionel Messi is bidding to score at home in the Champions League for the first time this season as Barcelona take on Borussia Dortmund.

The Argentina international fired his latest blank in the 0-0 draw with Slavia Prague three weeks ago, leaving his side with work to do if they are to progress to the last 16.

Barca will be through if they beat Dortmund or if they draw and Inter fall to defeat at Slavia in the other Group F contest taking place on Wednesday.

Elsewhere, holders Liverpool host Napoli at Anfield aiming to avenge a 2-0 defeat from the reverse fixture, while Chelsea will reach the knockout stages with victory against Valencia.

Below, we have highlighted the key data ahead of Wednesday's eight matches.

Barcelona v Borussia Dortmund

12 - Barcelona forward Messi scored with his last shot at Camp Nou in the 2018-19 Champions League season. He has attempted 12 without success this term, failing to score in both home matches. Should he not to score in this game, it would be first time since October 2011 he has failed to find the back of the net in three consecutive home games in the competition (a run of four).

4 - Borussia Dortmund's Achraf Hakimi has scored four Champions League goals this season – only one Moroccan player has ever netted more in a single campaign, with Marouane Chamakh scoring five for Bordeaux in the 2009-10 campaign.

Slavia Prague v Inter

3,119 - Slavia Prague have given 3,119 minutes to Czech players in the Champions League this season – the most by players of the nation of the club they are representing in the competition this campaign.

3 - Lautaro Martinez has scored in his last three Champions League appearances for Inter. He could become the fifth Argentinian to score in four consecutively, after Hernan Crespo (2002), Lionel Messi (six occasions), Sergio Aguero (2019) and Ezequiel Lavezzi (2013).

Liverpool v Napoli

2 - Liverpool's Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has scored in his last two Champions League appearances – the only Englishman to score in three consecutive matches for the Reds is Steven Gerrard (five in a row in 2007-08).

3 - Napoli head coach Carlo Ancelotti was the last manager to win an away Champions League match at Anfield, leading Real Madrid to a 3-0 victory in October 2014. No coach has won more away Champions League games in England than Ancelotti (three – level with Jose Mourinho and Massimiliano Allegri).

Genk v Salzburg

0 - Genk remain winless in all 16 of their Champions League matches (W0 D8 L8). It is the fifth longest winless run in the competition's history and the longest since December 2017 (Maribor – 17 matches).

5 - Salzburg striker Erling Haaland will become just the third player to score in his first five Champions League appearances if he scores in this match. The two to do so are Alessandro Del Piero (1995, Juventus) and Diego Costa (2013-14, Atletico Madrid).

Valencia v Chelsea

3 - Valencia have won three of their last four home Champions League games (W3 D0 L1), having lost four of their previous five (W1 D0 L4).

14 - Chelsea striker Tammy Abraham has had more shots than any other Chelsea player in the Champions League this season (14). However, he has found the net with just one of those shots and has scored as many own goals as he has goals (one).

Lille v Ajax

10 - Lille are winless in 10 home Champions League matches (W0 D4 L6). Only two teams have ever had longer home winless runs – Spartak Moscow (11 between 2001 and 2006) and Steaua Bucharest (13 between 1996 and 2013).

10 - Ajax's Hakim Ziyech has been involved in 10 goals in his last 12 Champions League appearances (four goals, six assists). The Moroccan has either scored or assisted in each of his last six away games in the competition (two goals, five assists).

RB Leipzig v Benfica

30 - RB Leipzig are one of only two teams yet to give a single minute to a player aged 30+ in the Champions League this season, along with Genk. In his 10 games as coach in the competition, Julian Nagelsmann has only used one player aged 30 or older – Hungarian striker Adam Szalai for Hoffenheim last season.

10 - Benfica have lost all 10 of their away matches in Germany in the European Cup/Champions League, facing six different teams without success.

Zenit v Lyon 

2 - Zenit have lost two of their last three home European matches (excluding qualifiers) – one more than they had lost in their previous 21 home games (W18 D2 L1).

4 - Lyon's Memphis Depay has scored in all four Champions League matches this season. No Lyon player has ever scored in five consecutive appearances, while only three Dutchmen have scored in five or more – Roy Makaay (2002), Ruud van Nistelrooy (2002, 2003 and 2007) and Arjen Robben (2013).

Inter coach Antonio Conte is confident a sustained improvement of the club's fortunes in Serie A will inspire a greater chance of success in Europe.

Since winning a Serie A and Champions League double in 2009-10 under Jose Mourinho, the club have failed to reclaim either prize, rarely even getting close.

The hiring of Conte has seen Inter take a step in the right direction, as they appear the only side capable of challenging the Serie A dominance of Juventus, who are chasing a ninth successive title.

Juve are a point clear of Inter at the summit after 13 matches, evidence of a marked improvement under Conte. But in the Champions League, life has been rather more difficult for the Nerazzurri.

Conte has often had to field criticism of his effectiveness in the Champions League and that is no different this term, having claimed just four points from as many games, though the coach is adamant improvement is within their grasp.

Speaking of Inter's Group F rivals to reporters on Tuesday ahead of the trip to Slavia Prague, Conte said: "Barca are LaLiga champions, they always go far in Europe. Dortmund are a top side, last year they made it hard for Bayern Munich [in the Bundesliga]. Slavia are, I think, 11 points clear - these sides are all winners, so that makes it very hard for us.

"But we know that in Serie A there are challenges. We have started our growth and development.

"By doing well in Serie A, we will then do well in Europe. We are at the start of our journey as a side, but we want to keep getting better.

"We want to stay in the competition, we want to progress. Experience for us at this level is important.

"We are always working hard. As of day one in pre-season, we have a clear identity as a side, everyone in the squad is pulling in the right direction.

"We will not change our idea, regardless of injuries. Everyone in the squad knows what I want. Each player is important to me. I have lots of faith in my players."

Inter head into Wednesday's game three points adrift of second-placed Borussia Dortmund, meaning failure to win could result in their elimination from the competition.

And while some might predict a straightforward win in Prague, Slavia proved in their draws against Inter and Barcelona they are capable of causing problems.

"Slavia made life hard for Dortmund and Barcelona, we found it hard in the San Siro meeting, but there is lots of motivation in the camp," Conte added.

"We are getting better all the time. We arrive here with confidence. We are more of a team now than in the first meeting.

"We are ready for this game. The result is important. The result is a consequence of the performance.

"If we play well then the result is usually good, so we focus on putting in a good performance. Our growth comes with good displays. I want us to be strong at both ends of the pitch."

Barcelona have confirmed Jordi Alba suffered a reoccurrence of a hamstring injury during the Champions League clash with Slavia Prague.

Alba went off at half-time in the 0-0 draw at Camp Nou on Tuesday, with Sergi Roberto replacing the full-back for the second half.

Spain international Alba was sidelined for several weeks with a hamstring injury earlier on in the campaign, and Barca have revealed the 30-year-old has suffered a reoccurrence of the same problem.

Barca, who confirmed the news on their official Twitter channel, offered no timescale on Alba's return.

"Tests performed have shown that Alba has had a relapse of the injury to his left biceps femoris [hamstring]. He is out and his recovery will determine his availability," the club's tweet read.

Barca's draw left Ernesto Valverde's side without a win in their last two matches, and they look set to be without Alba for Saturday's LaLiga match against struggling Celta Vigo.

Ernesto Valverde has no problem with his Barcelona side being whistled by the fans at Camp Nou, the coach calling on the players to respond after they were held to a 0-0 Champions League draw by Slavia Prague.

Barca failed to get back to winning ways following their 3-1 LaLiga defeat to Levante at the weekend, piling the pressure on Valverde.

Lionel Messi hit the crossbar and he and his team-mates were frequently frustrated by Slavia goalkeeper Ondrej Kolar, who produced an inspired display in between the posts.

Slavia were excellent value for their point, however, with the result leaving Barca still with work to do to progress from Group F.

Speaking afterwards to Movistar, Valverde said: "The other day we lost against Levante and it does not escape us that the last two have not been our best matches.

"We know there is a lot of pressure on the team and we have to respond."

Asked about the whistles, he added: "It is okay to be demanding of the team."

Jordi Alba was replaced at half-time because of a hamstring injury and Valverde said the full-back will have tests to reveal the extent of the issue.

Alba's potential absence is another blow to a Barca defence that will be without Gerard Pique in their next Champions League meeting with Borussia Dortmund on November 27 after receiving his third booking in this European campaign.

Barcelona did nothing to ease the pressure on coach Ernesto Valverde as they were held to a 0-0 Champions League draw by Slavia Prague in another uninspiring performance at Camp Nou.

Valverde saw his side stunned 3-1 by Levante in LaLiga at the weekend, and those expecting Slavia to fall victim to a Blaugrana backlash were left disappointed.

Lionel Messi had numerous chances to score and hit the frame of the goal on 35 minutes, but he was frequently frustrated by the excellent Ondrej Kolar in the Slavia goal.

His performance between the posts ensured the visitors earned a point they were good value for, having regularly found ways through the Barca defence at the other end, leaving Valverde's men with work still to do to progress from Group F, though they remain top with eight points from four games.

Barca's defence was cut open early and Marc-Andre ter Stegen was forced into action at the near post to keep out Petr Sevcik's deflected pull back.

Nelson Semedo then surged through one-on-one at the other end but was denied by smart save from Kolar, who would continue to impress.

The goalkeeper punched away a free-kick from Messi, who then left the woodwork shaking after he was left in far too much space and weaved his way in from the right, rattling the crossbar with a curling effort from the edge of the area.

Kolar thwarted Messi at the near post following fine work from Arturo Vidal, and the Slavia keeper produced an outstanding stop to prevent Gerard Pique's header from finding the net from the subsequent corner.

Jan Boril had the ball in the net for Slavia in first-half stoppage time, but he was correctly flagged for offside.

Sergi Roberto became the latest player to see an effort kept out by Kolar 10 minutes into the second half, before Messi teed up Vidal to slide into an empty net, only for the goal to be ruled as the former had strayed offside when latching on to Frenkie de Jong's pass.

Messi met teenager Ansu Fati's wonderful left-wing cross at the near post only to see his point-blank effort blocked by Kolar, whose goal was not threatened again as Slavia held firm with startling comfort.

Tuesday's Champions League schedule presents the chance for Marco Reus to set a new record for Borussia Dortmund, while Erling Haaland will hope to maintain his scoring run.

Reus drew a blank last time out in Europe, the Bundesliga side losing 2-0 to Inter, but will hope to make club history in the return fixture in Germany.

Barcelona are top of the table in the same group and the reigning LaLiga champions will be eager to preserve their unbeaten home run when they take on Slavia Prague at Camp Nou.

Liverpool are another team who seem to relish having home comforts, plus history tells us Chelsea should be feeling confident when Ajax visit Stamford Bridge.

We have picked out some of the notable numbers from Opta ahead of the eight games taking place at the start of matchweek four.

 

Barcelona v Slavia Prague

15 - Following his goal last time out, Lionel Messi has now scored in 15 consecutive UEFA Champions League seasons he has appeared in (since the start of 2005-06), a feat only matched by Real Madrid icon Raul (between 1995-96 and 2010-11).

33 - Barcelona are on a run of 33 home games without defeat in the competition. That is the longest streak in Champions League history, while they have only lost once in their last 55 outings at Camp Nou.

 

Borussia Dortmund v Inter

3 - Lautaro Martinez will look to become the first player to find the net in three consecutive Champions League appearances for Inter since Samuel Eto'o, who scored in four in a row in 2010

17 - Marco Reus has scored 17 Champions League goals for Borussia Dortmund, making him the club's joint-top scorer alongside former team-mate Robert Lewandowski.

 

Chelsea v Ajax

10 - Willian has created 10 goalscoring chances for his Chelsea team-mates so far in Europe this season. However, he is still yet to provide an assist!

100 - Chelsea have won every Champions League match when they have faced Eredivisie opponents. They overcame Ajax in the reverse fixture last time out, adding to home and away victories over Feyenoord in the 1999-2000 season.

 

Liverpool v Genk

11 - Alisson has kept 11 clean sheets in his Champions League career - six for Liverpool and five for Roma. Only Barcelona's Marc-Andre ter Stegen (12) has posted more since the start of the 2017-18 season.

23 - Liverpool have not lost at home in all European competitions since October 2014, a run of 23 games. The last visiting team to celebrate success at Anfield? Real Madrid (3-0).

 

Lyon v Benfica

0 - Benfica have won none of their four away Champions League matches played on French soil (D2 L2). In fact, they have failed to score a single goal so far!

6 - Lyon have drawn each of their last six home Champions League matches – the longest such run in the history of the competition.

 

Napoli v Salzburg

13 - Will Napoli get lucky at home for a 13th time in the Champions League? They have won 12 of their last 18 played out in front of their own fans, including four of the last five since a 4-2 loss to Manchester City in November 2017.

19 - Erling Haaland (19) is aiming to become only the second teenager in the history of Europe's top-tier club tournament to score in four consecutive appearances. Only Kylian Mbappe has previously achieved the feat.

 

Valencia v Lille 

10 - Valencia have conceded at least once in each of their last 10 home Champions League matches. They have been beaten in their last two European home games and will be aiming to avoid losing three in a row at the Mestalla for the first since November 2007.

14 - Including qualifiers, Lille are winless in their last 14 European games (D7 L7). Their last victory was way back in July 2014.

 

Zenit v RB Leipzig

14 - Zenit have won their previous 14 group-stage matches at home in the Europa League and Champions League combined, a run stretching back to November 2014, when they beaten 2-1 by Bayer Leverkusen.

10 - At 32 years and 105 days, Leipzig boss Julian Nagelsmann will become the youngest coach to reach the milestone of 10 Champions League matches in charge.

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