Another week of Champions League is in the books. All four English sides were able to pick up wins in their respective matches. Real Madrid and Barcelona continue their domination in Europe, and domestic champions such as Lille and Borussia Dortmund continue to struggle in their groups.
There were many exciting matches, including some great individual performances that were miles ahead of the rest. Eleven stand head and shoulders above the rest in the Champions League Team of the Week.
Team: Shakhtar Donetsk
Olexandr Rybka helped his side earn a point in a 2-2 draw against Zenit St. Petersburg. He made a number of great saves and also saved a penalty kick early in the game that helped give his side a huge psychological edge. Great performance by Rybka.
Team: Real Madrid
The Brazilian left-back troubled the Lyon defense down the left flank throughout the night. He used his pace and his skill to confuse Lyon and was perhaps Real Madrid's most threatening player in the attack all night. He also played brilliant when he needed to defend as well. An outstanding performance by Marcelo.
Team: Arsenal FC
Laurent Koscielny was clearly Arsenal's best player on the pitch in their Champions League tie with Marseille. On a night when Arsenal had trouble breaking down the Marseille defense, the Arsenal back four, led by Koscielny, was very strong and organized against a talented Marseille attack.
Koscielny's positioning was top class, he made excellent blocks throughout the game, and he executed many superb tackles and interceptions to prevent many of Marseille's attack.
Team: Real Madrid
Sergio Ramos had to move out from his traditional right-back position to provide cover for an injured Ricardo Carvalho in the Real Madrid central defense. He played beautifully while filling in for the Portuguese defender. He was able to contain Lyon striker Bafetimbi Gomis with his superb pace and aerial ability.
To finish off his wonderful defensive display, Ramos was able to score the fourth Madrid goal with a fine left-footed finish off a corner kick.
A tremendous defensive display for the Spanish defender.
Gonzalo Rodriguez was magnificent in Villarreal's 2-1 loss to Manchester City. Rodriguez was able to contain striker Edin Dzeko and the rest of the City attack. However, lady luck would not be on his side as teammate Carlos Marchena scored an own goal and a late Sergio Aguero goal would prove to be the winner for the Manchester club.
A dissatisfying result for such a great performance by Gonzalo Rodriguez.
Team: Otelul Galati
Many of you have never heard of this player before until his performance against Manchester United on Tuesday. He was able to contain Manchester United's midfield throughout the game. Antal seemed like he was everywhere on the field against United.
He helped out the defense throughout the game and also was able to stretch the United defense on the attack and provide many good balls to his teammates. He was man of the match by a country mile in that fixture.
Hopefully, we will hear the name Liviu Antal many more times in this competition.
Team: Chelsea FC
An outstanding performance from the Portuguese midfielder. Raul Meireles' presence on the field troubled the Genk defense all night long. His constant pressure helped Chelsea pin back the opposition's defense throughout the game.
Meireles scored an absolutely beautiful goal that opened the floodgates for Chelsea and contributed an assist from a well-placed cross that led to a Fernando Torres header. It was by far his best performance in a Chelsea jersey so far.
Team: FC Barcelona
Another incredible performance from this world-class midfielder. It was another touch of magic created by Andres Iniesta that helped Barcelona get an early goal against Viktoria Plzen. Iniesta’s goal came after a string of trademark Barcelona passing that left the opposing defenders in complete confusion.
He had connected a couple passe with Lionel Messi before dinking the ball around his marker and side-footing narrowly inside the near post from close range. A brilliant goal by the little Spanish midfielder.
Team: FC Barcelona
What can you say about Lionel Messi that no one has said before? Messi had another masterclass performance for Barcelona against Viktoria Plzen. He was unfortunate not to score any goals, but he hit the woodwork on several occasions. He also provided assists for both Barcelona goals. It was not a hard decision to put Lionel Messi in the team of the week.
Team: FC Porto
A typical world-class striker pressures the opposition's defense constantly, is always dangerous when he is on the ball, can provide great balls to his teammates, and has clinical finishing.
Everything mentioned above describes Brazilian striker Hulk's performance against APOEL. He was the best player on the pitch and also scored in the contest. He is showing why he is on the list of the most-wanted players in all of Europe.
Many people never thought they would hear this again, but "El Niño" is finally back. Fernando Torres finally looked back to his best with his magnificent performance against FC Genk.
He scored two great goals, which says a lot because he had previously scored three goals in his previous 26 games with Chelsea. He also provided many great touches around the box and fully deserved his place into the team of the week.
All Premier League defenses must beware, because Torres is back.