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Chelsea suffers Champions League KO

updated 5:48 PM EST, Wed December 5, 2012
Fernando Torres scored twice as Chelsea crushed Danish side Nordsjaelland 6-1 at Stamford Bridge but it wasn't enough to save them from elimination from the Champions League. Juventus picked up a 1-0 win at Shakhtar Donetsk to secure its place in the last-16 and dump Chelsea into the Europa League. Fernando Torres scored twice as Chelsea crushed Danish side Nordsjaelland 6-1 at Stamford Bridge but it wasn't enough to save them from elimination from the Champions League. Juventus picked up a 1-0 win at Shakhtar Donetsk to secure its place in the last-16 and dump Chelsea into the Europa League.
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Down and out
Juve joy
Celtic surge
Messi misery
BATE battered
Vamos Valencia
Yes for Yilmaz
Bittersweet for Cluj
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STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Chelsea becomes first defending champion to exit competition at the Group Stage
  • Juventus secured a 1-0 at Shakhtar Donetsk to secure its place in next round
  • Celtic defeats Spartak Moscow 2-1 to claim second spot in Group G
  • Lionel Messi fails to score and leaves field with injury during Barcelona's draw with Benfica

(CNN) -- Chelsea became the first defending champion to crash out at the Group Stage of the Champions League -- despite thrashing Danish side Nordsjaelland 6-1 at Stamford Bridge.

The win was Chelsea's largest in the competition, but it still wasn't enough to prevent them slipping into the Europa League.

Rafa Benitez's side needed Shakhtar Donetsk to do them a favor and defeat Juventus, but the Italian team triumphed 1-0 in Ukraine.

That meant that Chelsea's victory was meaningless, despite the margin of victory.

It looked as if the Blues would endure a difficult evening when Nordsjaelland was awarded a penalty on 32 minutes.

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Dynamo Kiev's Ideye Brown fights for the ball with Dinamo Zagreb's Domagoj Vida in a game which was halted after 11 minutes following a snow storm in Croatia. The teams returned to the field after a 17 minute delay and played out a 1-1 draw Dynamo Kiev's Ideye Brown fights for the ball with Dinamo Zagreb's Domagoj Vida in a game which was halted after 11 minutes following a snow storm in Croatia. The teams returned to the field after a 17 minute delay and played out a 1-1 draw
Let it snow
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Champions League action Champions League action

But Chelsea keeper Petr Cech saved well from Nicolai Stokholm to keep the game goalless.

Just minutes later, it was Chelsea's turn to miss from the spot when Eden Hazard's effort was saved.

Chelsea collapse heaps pressure on Benitez

Any frustration around Stamford Bridge was finally extinguished when the home side was awarded another penalty following a handball and David Luiz swept home.

Fernando Torres netted a second on the stroke of halftime before Nordsjaelland halved the deficit through Joshua John.

But the Blues steamrolled the Danes in the second period with Torres grabbing his second, before Hazard, Juan Mata and Oscar completed the rout.

In the end, it was Olexander Kucher's 56th minute own goal in Ukraine which sealed Chelsea's demise and Juventus' place in the knockout phase.

Both Shakhtar and Juve only needed a draw to progress with the Ukrainian side already guaranteed of a place in the last-16.

But the Italians secured victory and top spot with a hard-fought win.

Barca's unbeaten run ended by Celtic

In Glasgow, Celtic secured a dramatic 2-1 win over Spartak Moscow to secure second place in Group G.

Kris Commons netted an 81st minute penalty to seal the three points and ensure the Scottish champion leapfrogged Benfica.

Gary Hooper's strike had given Celtic the lead before Spartak struck back through Ari six minutes before the break.

But when Marek Suchý was adjuged to have brought down Giorgos Samaras, Commons blasted the ball home from 12-yards to spark wild celebrations.

Spartak's misery was compounded when Kim Kallstrom was sent off for a wild tackle on Commons.

Benfica and 'the curse of Bela Guttmann'

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Bela Guttmann was a Hungarian Jew who transformed the face of modern football. He worked across the world, enjoying huge success in Brazil and Portugal, where he won the European Cup on two occasions with Benfica. Bela Guttmann was a Hungarian Jew who transformed the face of modern football. He worked across the world, enjoying huge success in Brazil and Portugal, where he won the European Cup on two occasions with Benfica.
Bela Guttmann
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Bela\'s Benfica \'curse\' Bela's Benfica 'curse'
Manchester City was the highest spender when it came to agents' fees, paying out close to $17million. Manager Roberto Mancini was busy in the transfer market, bringing in the likes of Javi Garcia from Benfica.
Manchester City was the highest spender when it came to agents' fees, paying out close to $17million. Manager Roberto Mancini was busy in the transfer market, bringing in the likes of Javi Garcia from Benfica.
Manchester City - $17m
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EPL agents earn millions EPL agents earn millions

Meanwhile, Benfica was left to think of what might have been after finishing goalless at Barcelona.

The Catalan side left out a whole host of star names including Xavi and Andres Iniesta, while Leo Messi started on the bench.

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Messi, who still needs two goals to beat Gerd Muller's record of 85 goals in a calendar year, did come onto the field after 58 minutes, but was forced off on a stretcher after suffering an injury late on.

But despite Barca fielding a relatively inexperienced side, Benfica was unable to find a way through and must now settle for the Europa League.

Bayern Munich share points with Dortmund

In Group F, Bayern Munich secured top spot with a comfortable 4-1 win over 10-man BATE Borisov.

Mario Gomez gave last season's finalist a 22nd minute lead with Thomas Muller adding a second.

Xherdan Shaqiri grabbed Bayern's third before BATE was reduced to 10-men when Denis Polyakov was shown a second yellow card.

David Alaba hammered home a fourth with seven minutes remaining, before Yegor Filipenko hit an 89th minute consolation.

Valencia was forced to settle for second place following its 1-0 win at Lille courtesy of Jonas' 36th minute penalty.

In Group H, Galatasaray pulled off a crucial 2-1 win at Braga to book its place in the next round.

Mossoró had given the Portuguese side a 32nd minute lead as Galatasaray's hope began to fade.

But top scorer Burak Yılmaz equalized with his sixth goal of the competition, before substitute Aydın Yılmaz hit the winner.

It was hard to swallow for Romanian side Cluj, which recorded one of the most famous results in its history to win 1-0 at Manchester United.

Luis Alberto's stunning strike ensured Cluj became the first Romanian team to triumph at Old Trafford.

But with Galatasaray also winning, Cluj will now have to fight it out in Europa League.

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