sport news Champions League state of play: Chelsea, Barcelona, Real Madrid and Co have ...

sport news Champions League state of play: Chelsea, Barcelona, Real Madrid and Co have ...
sport news Champions League state of play: Chelsea, Barcelona, Real Madrid and Co have ...

The Champions League group stage has now reached its last dance, with just one round of matches remaining for Europe's big guns to seal a place in the knockouts. 

Manchester United successfully put the sacking of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer behind them to secure top spot in Group F thanks to goals from Cristiano Ronaldo and Jadon Sancho. 

Caretaker boss Michael Carrick oversaw the 2-0 win over Villarreal and United have secured safe passage through to the last-16 as a group winner.

Chelsea are also through but have work to do to top their group given they go over to Russia to face Zenit level on points with Juventus, who they pummelled 4-0 at Stamford Bridge in the last round of games.

Most fascinating is Group G where all four teams go into a winner takes all final round with both spots in the knockout stages still up for grabs. 

With one round remaining in this year's Champions League group stage, Sportsmail takes you through the state of play. 

The Champions League group stage is at its business end with the knockouts now in sight

The Champions League group stage is at its business end with the knockouts now in sight

Group A

Matchday five saw Man City sweep Paris Saint-Germain's star-studded frontline aside to secure top spot and a seeded position in the last-16 draw. 

Given PSG's eight-point total they cannot be caught and so will go through as runners-up.

But don't be fooled that the final round of matches are merely dead rubbers - far from it.

Both RB Leipzig and Club Brugge still hold hopes of finishing third, thus securing a place in the Europa League knockout stage.  

With the top two settled, it is the battle for the Europa League spot that rests in the final round

With the top two settled, it is the battle for the Europa League spot that rests in the final round

RB Leipzig kept hopes of finishing third alive with a dominant 5-0 thrashing of Club Brugge

RB Leipzig kept hopes of finishing third alive with a dominant 5-0 thrashing of Club Brugge

Leipzig absolutely thrashed their Belgian rivals on matchday five with, ironically, a 5-0 win in Brugge. 

That hauled Jesse Marsch's side level on points with four and it will go down to the deciding round to sort out which of them will still have European football in the new year. 

The task looks more daunting for Brugge given they have to go on the road to Paris and the Parc des Princes. 

For RB Leipzig, they will hope City already have one eye on the knockout stages and Pep Guardiola shuffles his pack just enough that they can pull out a result. Both games keep their edge, keeping the interest alive.  

Remaining fixtures:

December 7: RB Leipzig vs Manchester City December 7: Paris Saint-Germain vs Club Brugge Group B

Group B is set for an enticing finale, with three teams of huge historical significance still fighting for a runner-up spot. 

It was billed as the 'Group of Death' when the draw was made and yet Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool have been perfect with 15 points out of a total 15 available. 

Another fabulous display in a 2-0 win over Porto means the trio behind them all still stand a chance of that desired second place spot. 

AC Milan looked down and out midway through this group stage but a 1-0 win away at Atletico Madrid in matchday five has given them a shot in the arm and there are signs of life in the Italian city.  

Liverpool have been flawless but the three remaining teams can all still reach the next round

Liverpool have been flawless but the three remaining teams can all still reach the next round

Atletico Madrid are struggling badly but can still qualify despite sitting bottom of Group B

Atletico Madrid are struggling badly but can still qualify despite sitting bottom of Group B

As for Atletico, well, it's all starting to go wrong. 

Bottom of Group B and looking shorn of any confidence, Diego Simeone's side need a mental reset before they head over to face Porto in Portugal on December 7.

They will have to hope that they beat Porto on the road and that Liverpool, even with rotation inevitable, get some sort of result away in Milan.

Second, third and fourth spots remain fluid and it promises to be one of the most interesting finales of the final round of matches.  

Remaining fixtures:

December 7: AC Milan vs Liverpool  December 7: Porto vs Atletico Madrid  Group C

Similarly to Liverpool, Ajax have also gone five for five in this group stage with Sebastian Haller appearing inspired once more.

His two goals against Besiktas stole victory from the Turkish side and ensures they remain pointless heading into the final round of games. 

Group C is the first so far where there is nothing left to play for.

Borussia Dortmund's loss at the hands of Sporting Lisbon was the final nail in their Champions League coffin this season as they drop to the Europa League.

Victory in the final round would not be enough as Sporting, who sit three points ahead of them, hold the head-to-head record.  

Borussia Dortmund have been knocked out of the Champions League after disastrous displays

Borussia Dortmund have been knocked out of the Champions League after disastrous displays

The Germans found themselves beaten by Sporting Lisbon and they fall to the Europa League

The Germans found themselves beaten by Sporting Lisbon and they fall to the Europa League

'We are discussing the same mistakes we keep making,' Dortmund captain, Marco Reus, said. 

'Even with 10 [men] we were better than they were. They did little but still won 3-1. It was a terrible evening. We are eliminated and that is the truth.'

Dead rubbers all round to round of Group C - not set to be a classic. 

Remaining fixtures:

December 7: Borussia Dortmund vs Besiktas December 7: Ajax vs Sporting CP Group D

It did seem to good to be true and so it proved - Sherrif Tiraspol will not pull off the herculean effort to reach the knockout stages of the Champions League. 

Wins in two of their first three games was staggering but a 3-0 home loss to Real Madrid this week confirmed they will be dropping into the Europa League in 2022.

Fear not, though, there is still the small matter of finalising who will secure top spot in Group D.

Simone Inzaghi's Inter Milan have looked to steady the ship and they go to Spain in a winner takes all clash with Real for top spot. 

Real Madrid host Inter Milan in a winner takes all final round clash with top spot up for grabs

Real Madrid host Inter Milan in a winner takes all final round clash with top spot up for grabs

Edin Dzeko's brace against Shakhtar Donetsk secured progression but now they want top spot

Edin Dzeko's brace against Shakhtar Donetsk secured progression but now they want top spot

Carlo Ancelotti's side are in firm control and know that spot will be theirs if they can simply avoid defeat at the Santiago Bernabeu. 

The only blemish on Real Madrid's Champions League record this season

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