Chelsea and Benfica first CL quarter-finalists – AZ books fine win over Lazio in Conference League

Chelsea and Benfica first CL quarter-finalists – AZ books fine win over Lazio in Conference League

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Tonight AZ in the Conference League and two games in the Champions League:

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Thanks for following our blog. Tomorrow we will be back with the games Tottenham Hotspur – AC Milan and Bayern Munich – Paris Saint-Germain.

CHE-DOR | Match Report

Raheem Sterling (Chelsea) celebrates his goal against Dortmund

Chelsea briefly out of crisis after reaching CL quarter-finals through win over Dortmund

Being a fan of ‘The Blues‘, but Chelsea are out of the crisis for a while. At their own Stamford Bridge on Tuesday night, the English beat Borussia Dortmund 2-0 (out game 0-1) to qualify for the quarterfinals of the Champions League.

In an exciting duel, in which Raheem Sterling and Kai Havertz scored the goals, Dutch referee Danny Makkelie did not have an easy evening. He also needed the help of VAR on a few occasions, including the decisive penalty for Chelsea.

BEN-BRU | Match Report

Goncalo Ramos celebrates his goal against Club Brugge

Benfica outclasses Club Brugge and is again quarter-finalist in Champions League

Benfica has reached the quarter-finals of the Champions League for the second season in a row. The Portuguese club, led by former PSV coach Roger Schmidt, won 5-1 over Club Brugge at home on Tuesday night, which, after the 2-0 victory in the outward match, was more than enough.

Benfica managed to reach the quarter-finals of the Champions League five times before (in 1995, 2006, 2012, 2016 and 2022), but never reached the semifinals.

CHE-DOR | 90+7′ End of match

Chelsea holds on and wins 2-0 over Borussia Dortmund. This erases the 1-0 defeat in the outward match and the English advance to the quarter-finals.

CHE-DOR | 90+1 Final phase arrived

6 minutes of injury time remain for Dortmund to drag an extension out of the fire. The Germans go full on the attack allowing Chelsea to become dangerous from the counter.

Benfica, after the 2-0 victory in Bruges, had no child to the Belgians at home. In the end it remained 5-1.

CHE-DOR | Malen inside the lines

CHE-DOR | Chelsea goal disallowed


Bjorn Meijer scores an honorary goal for Club Brugge and it can be called beautiful. The former FC Groningen player popped the ball tightly into the cross for the 5-1.


And then it was 5-0 as well. Former Ajacied David Neres shoots the Portuguese 5-0. For a moment it looks like offside, but VAR approves the goal.


In Lisbon, meanwhile, it has become 4-0. João Mário shoots from the penalty spot.

CHE-DOR | 58′ Great chance Dortmund!

Six meters from the goal, the ball falls at the feet of Jude Bellingham. The Englishman cannot hurt his compatriots as his effort flies just a meter wide.


A lot does happen in a few minutes at Stamford Bridge. The ball first lands on the arm of Dortmund player Marius Wolf, but Makkelie doesn’t see it at first. VAR Pol van Boekel calls his compatriot to the screen to watch the replay. Then the ball still goes on the dot.

Havert gets behind the ball, has a hitch in his run-up and then aims at the post. Celebration at Dortmund, but the penalty has to be retaken because Van Boekel says some Dortmund players walked in too early at the moment Havertz shot.

Then Havertz copies his penalty, but this time it hits. 2-0 in London. At this score, Dortmund needs a goal to force an extension.


Bruges needed to make it four in the second half, now there are five. Gonçalo Ramos signed for his second of the night and made it 3-0.

CHE-DOR | 46′ Second half

The game where things are still exciting has now started again.

BEN-BRU | 46′ Second Half

In Lisbon, meanwhile, the ball is rolling again. Can Brugge get anything done?

Referee Makkelie whistles for halftime. A break in this exciting game.


With a lot of luck, Raheem Sterling manages to put Chelsea up 1-0. First he completely mows over a cross from Chilwell, then he gets the ball in a scramble, but then he pops hard. At the stroke of halftime, Chelsea erased the 1-0 defeat in Dortmund.

CHE-DOR | 38′ No goal Chelsea

Sterling is sent into the depths, then shoots at goalkeeper Alexander Meyer. Havertz picks up the rebound and shoots brilliantly in through the underside of the crossbar. Unfortunately for the home fans, the party does not continue. Sterling was just offside on the depth pass.


This encounter seems decided before halftime. With a beautiful dribble in the sixteen, Gonçalo Ramos put several Bruges defenders to shame. He then shoots hard to make it 2-0. It is immediately halftime in Lisbon where Club Brugge will have to score four goals in the second half.

CHE-DOR | 29′ Chelsea on the post!

There was almost the lead in London for Chelsea. Kai Havertz gets a dropped ball at his feet and takes a hard shot from about eighteen yards out. His shot goes out of the goal via the inside of the post.


There is the lead that Benfica has been hovering against all through the first half. After a smooth breakaway, it is Rafa who opens the scoring with a punt.

CHE-DOR | 17′ Kepa saves Chelsea

The Spanish goalkeeper is worth his weight in gold for the home team. A free kick from Reus sails towards the cross, but the goalie dives the ball out of his goal.

BEN-BRU | 20′ Great chance Benfica

There was almost a goal there that would have stayed on the scoreboard. Again it is João Mário who is dangerous. However, his effort is cleared a few inches before the line by the Belgians.

CHE-DOR | 5′ Brandt very soon injured to the side

BEN-BRU | 20′ Great chance Benfica!

A corner for the Portuguese, which ended up at the feet of

In London, meanwhile, the ball is also rolling. The previous encounter ended in a 1-0 victory for the Germans.

BEN-BRU | 2′ Goal disallowed

It hit Lisbon very quickly. In the first Portuguese attack, João Mário chops the ball behind goalkeeper Simon Mignolet, but VAR sees that the Portuguese was offside.

The ball is rolling in Lisbon, where Benfica is defending a 2-0 lead.

LAZ-AZ | Match Report

Pavlidis is thanked for his 1-1

Pavlidis and Kerkez deliver AZ fine victory at Lazio

AZ showed that the number three in the premier league is no less than the number three in Serie A. In Rome, AZ beat Italian Lazio 2-1, making it enough of a draw in the return of these eighth finals in the Conference League.

Fighting for a spot in the quarter-finals, but also for a second Dutch ticket to the 2024/25 Champions League, AZ fought back from an early 1-0 deficit, thanks to goals by Vangelis Pavlidis and Milos Kerkez.

Chelsea-Dortmund start a little later, Germans were a little later at the stadium

LAZ-AZ | 90+3′ Finished!

End of match in Rome, AZ wins 2-1 and has an excellent starting position for next Thursday’s return in Alkmaar.

LAZ-AZ | 76′ AZ escapes thanks to Clasie

With clenched fists Jordy Clasie celebrates his action. The midfielder blocks a dangerous shot by Luis Alberto, keeping AZ on their feet.

Dutchmen in the Champions League

Seven Dutchmen could be in action in the Champions League tonight. Bjorn Meijer and Noa Lang have a starting place at Club Brugge in the game against Benfica. Donyell Malen is on the bench at Borussia Dortmund in the game against Chelsea. That match will be officiated by Danny Makkelie and his assistants Rogier Honig, Jan de Vries and Jochem Kamphuis.


AZ is struggling in Rome, where Lazio is clearly the superior side after halftime. Still, the Alkmaarers are in the lead. Kerkez goes 1-2 with Karlsson and then shoots the ball through the legs of goalkeeper Luís Maximiano. AZ at 2-1 in Rome.

Milos Kerkez celebrates the 1-2

CHE-DOR | Setup Dortmund

CHE-DOR | Setup Chelsea

BEN-BRU | Line-up Club Brugge

BEN-BRU | Line-up Benfica

LAZ-AZ | 46′ Second half

The second half has begun in Rome.

Weghorst explains tapping Anfield sign: ‘Wanted to tease Virgil’

Wout Weghorst on instagram

Both teams went into the locker rooms with a 1-1 halftime score.

LAZ-AZ | 45+1′ Milinkovic-Savic on the crossbar!

AZ was close to going behind again. Captain Milinkovic-Savic hit the crossbar from just outside the penalty area. Survival for AZ until halftime.


AZ equalizes in Rome. Reijnders with the good control, Karlsson with the cross and Pavlidis with the nick.

LAZ-AZ | Milestone for Goes

LAZ-AZ | 31′ Good chance AZ

AZ fell behind, but after that Pascal Jansen’s team turned its back. It yielded Sven Mijnans a good chance. The winter acquisition shoots a cross via a Lazio defender at the post.


Lazio has long been the dominant side and that results in the lead for the Italians after 18 minutes of play. Clasie loses the ball after which Zaccagni is able to deliver the cross on the left. Pedro cleverly runs away from his opponents and taps in the 1-0.

Pedro celebrates the 1-0

LAZ-AZ | European debut for Goes

LAZ-AZ | 3′ Great chances Lazio

The first big chances of the match are for the Romans. First it is Milinković-Savić who has the 1-0 on his shoe and then Kerkez has to act for the Alkmaarders. AZ has been warned.

The ball is rolling in Rome. The eighth final of the Conference League between AZ and Lazio has begun.

Feyenoord host Ajax on April 5 for KNVB Cup semifinal

The semifinal between Feyenoord and Ajax in the KNVB Cup tournament has been set for Wednesday, April 5, at De Kuip. The other semi-final match between Spakenburg and PSV is scheduled for April 4. The Bunschoten municipality has given permission for the amateur club, which surprisingly eliminated FC Utrecht in the quarter-finals, to play the game with the defending champion of the cup tournament at its own Sportpark De Westmaat.

No supporters of the Amsterdam club are welcome at the game between Feyenoord and Ajax, as fans of the visiting club have always been banned from entering the league’s Klassieker for many years. Feyenoord is still considering what extra security measures to take.

Feyenoord and Ajax also met at De Kuip on January 22, then for the league. The Rotterdam club had put up meters-high nets between the stands and the pitch to prevent supporters from throwing objects towards the pitch.

Special measures were also taken to allow Ajax’s player bus to arrive at De Kuip without problems.

LAZ-AZ | Setup Lazio

Great-grandson Mussolini not in Lazio selection

Romano Floriani Mussolini, the great-grandson of infamous dictator Benito Mussolini, is not in the matchday squad for the match against AZ. The 20-year-old back was on the bench for the first time in a European match last week, but will not make his debut today.

Lang not giving up yet with Brugge

Noa Lang and Club Brugge are facing a 2-0 deficit against Benfica in the Champions League. The Dutch winger, despite the defeat at home, still believes in a quarterfinal for his team.

Lang believes in Champions League stunt with Brugge: ‘Crazier things have happened’

The hunt for coefficients continues

As often in a week with European soccer, it’s back to UEFA’s coefficient list. The Netherlands is close to two direct starting spots in the 2024 Champions League. Trailing Portugal, which still has three clubs in Europe, has not yet been definitively shaken off. Victories by AZ and Feyenoord are therefore still welcome. Read more about the current situation here:

Liverpool fans compensated for Champions League final 2022

Nearly twenty thousand Liverpool fans who attended last year’s Champions League final against Real Madrid will be compensated.

Chaos ensued at the gates of the Stade de France as long queues formed at the entrance. This was because police had found out that invalid tickets were in circulation among Liverpool fans. In the chaos, people got into a scuffle and fans were sprayed with tear gas. Some of the supporters did not even enter the stadium. Affected Real Madrid fans who meet certain requirements are also eligible for compensation.

UEFA Secretary General Theodore Theodoridis responded in a statement, “We recognize the negative experience of the supporters on that day and with this solution we will compensate the fans who had bought a ticket, and were most affected by the difficulties in entering the stadium.”

Vitesse continues legal battle with Gelredome owner

Vitesse continues its legal battle with Gelredome stadium owner Nedstede. Both parties meet again in court this week. Last week Vitesse lost summary proceedings over use of the stadium, jeopardizing the Eredivisie club’s professional license.

Vitesse has terminated its lease of the Gelredome because it considers the rental fee of 2 million euros a year too high. The current contract expires at the end of September. Because Nedstede considers Vitesse’s proposed rent of about half a million euros for the next 20 years far too low, an impasse arose.

Tonight the European soccer season continues again. In the Champions League, the first two returns will be played in the eighth finals. In addition, AZ is already in action in the Conference League against Lazio. Follow all developments in this liveblog.

Conference League: Lazio – AZ (6:45 p.m.)

Champions League: Chelsea – Dortmund (9 p.m., first game result 0-1)

Champions League: Benfica – Club Brugge (9 p.m., result first match 2-0)

Kayleigh Williams