Champions League round-up on Wednesday: Bayern break Atletico Madrid, Lukaku makes history
FOOTBALL By Reuters | October 22nd 2020
Coman dazzles in Bayern's 4-0 demolition of Atletico
Winger Kingsley Coman scored twice and set up another goal as holders Bayern Munich crushed Atletico Madrid 4-0 in the Champions League Group A opener on Wednesday to stretch their winning run in the competition to 12 games.
The France international put the hosts ahead with a fine effort in the 28th minute and then set up Leon Goretzka to fire in their second in the 41st.
Fellow France international Corentin Tolisso killed off any Spanish hopes of a comeback with a sensational shot in the 66th minute before Coman twice shook off defender Felipe to bag his second goal of the evening six minutes later.
Bayern, who had won all 11 of their games en route to the Champions League title last season, are top on three points in group, with Lokomotiv Moscow and Salzburg on one following their 2-2 draw.
Zapata inspires Atalanta to comfortable win at Midtjylland
Towering Colombian striker Duvan Zapata scored one goal and set up two more as Atalanta cruised to a 4-0 victory over Midtjylland in their Champions League Group D clash in driving rain at the MCH Arena in Herning on Wednesday.
It was a tough debut for the Danish side in the Champions League group stages as they created little up front and were under constant threat in defence, with Papu Gomez, Luis Muriel and debutant Aleksey Miranchuk also on target for the Italians.
Atalanta, who had a surprise run to the quarter-finals last season, top the pool after the opening round of fixtures. Midtjylland visit Liverpool on Tuesday, while Atalanta host Ajax.
The Italians came into the game having been thumped 4-1 in Serie A at Napoli on Saturday and looked determined to erase that memory from the start as they took the game to their outgunned hosts.
Zapata broke free on the right side of the box early on but his shot from a tight angle rattled the post. He then forced an excellent save from home goalkeeper Jesper Hansen, whose fingertips denied the forward the opening goal.
The writing was on the wall though and two minutes later the striker put his side in front when a cross was cleverly headed into his path by Cristian Romero and Zapata rifled the ball past a helpless Hansen.
Atalanta doubled their advantage with a superb strike from Gomez, who collected a pass from Zapata 30 metres from goal and unleashed an unstoppable shot into the roof of the net.
It was 3-0 before halftime as the lively Zapata's shot from the edge of the box was not held by Hansen in the wet and Muriel reacted quickest to turn home the loose ball.
Atalanta continued to threaten in the second half, with Miranchuk adding a superb fourth goal on his debut when he curled the ball into the corner of the net.
Manchester City come back for 3-1 win over Porto
Manchester City came from behind to make a winning start in Champions League Group C on Wednesday with a 3-1 victory over Porto at the Etihad Stadium.
Porto grabbed a 14th-minute lead when City's Ruben Dias, a recent signing from Benfica, gave away the ball and Colombian winger Luis Diaz cut in from the left, burst diagonally across the City defence and shot into the far bottom corner of Ederson's goal.
Pep Guardiola's side were soon back on level terms though when, after Ilkay Gundogan had struck the post, Porto defender Pepe bundled over Raheem Sterling in the resulting scramble and Sergio Aguero converted the ensuing penalty.
City were far from their flowing best but went in front in the 65th minute with a perfect, curling free kick from Gundogan over the wall and beyond the reach of Porto keeper Agustin Marchesin.
Substitutes Ferran Torres and Phil Foden then combined to make it 3-1, with the Spaniard collecting a return pass from the England midfielder before gliding into space and driving a right-foot shot into the far corner.
Real Madrid left shellshocked by depleted Shakhtar
Shakhtar Donetsk pulled off a shock 3-2 win away to 13-times winners Real Madrid in their Champions League Group B opener on Wednesday, despite the Ukrainian side missing 10 players due to injuries and COVID-19.
Brazilian midfielder Tete gave Shakhtar the lead in the 29th minute of a whirlwind first half, slotting low past an outstretched Thibaut Courtois after team mate Viktor Korniyenko had zig-zagged his way through Madrid's defence.
The visitors doubled their lead four minutes later when Madrid defender Raphael Varane stabbed into his own net as he tried to clear the ball after Courtois had parried a shot, while Israeli forward Manor Solomon continued the onslaught by firing home shortly before halftime.
Luka Modric pulled one back for Zinedine Zidane's shellshocked side with a brilliant strike from distance early in the second half before substitute Vinicius Jr reduced the deficit to one goal.
Federico Valverde thought he had equalised in added time with a heavily deflected shot but the goal was ruled out for offside as Vinicius was blocking the vision of goalkeeper Anatoly Trubin and the depleted visitors celebrated one of their most memorable victories in European competition.
Own goal hands Liverpool away win at Ajax
Liverpool beat Ajax Amsterdam 1-0 away with a fortunate own goal in their Champions League group-stage opener on Wednesday, riding their luck at times but still showing their title credentials.
Ajax fullback Nicolas Tagliafico turned the ball into his own net in the 35th minute to ensure a winning start in Group D for the English champions, who looked the stronger of the two teams despite Ajax creating several good chances at the Johan Cruyff Arena.
Davy Klaassen struck the post with a powerful shot and Quincy Promes had a point-blank effort stopped by the legs of Liverpool goalkeeper Adrian as the Dutch club created a handful of excellent opportunities.
Yet Liverpool, who won their sixth Champions League title in 2019, still proved value for their victory, dominating possession and counter attacking at pace while keeping a clean sheet despite missing talisman Virgil van Dijk, who suffered a serious injury at the weekend.
Lukaku rescues late draw for Inter at home to Gladbach
Inter Milan forward Romelu Lukaku scored twice, including a 90th-minute equaliser, as the Serie A side snatched a 2-2 draw at home to Borussia Moenchengladbach in the Champions League on Wednesday.
The Belgian put Inter in front with an opportunist goal in the 49th minute but the Bundesliga side levelled in the 63rd with their first shot on target, a penalty converted by Ramy Bensebaini.
Gladbach's second shot on target also produced a goal as Jonas Hofmann broke clear of the Inter defence and scored with a shot through Samir Handanovic's legs in the 84th minute.
Lukaku, however, had the final say in the Group B game with another opportunist effort when he managed to scramble the ball home at the far post with his knee after a corner was headed on by Alessandro Bastoni.
OPTA DATA: Romelu Lukaku has now scored in each of his last nine games in European competition (10 goals), extending the longest-ever such run by an Inter Milan player.
Late Hassan goal gives Olympiakos 1-0 win over Marseille
A stoppage time goal by late substitute Ahmed Hassan gave Olympiakos Piraeus a 1-0 win over 1993 European Cup winners Olympique Marseille in their Champions League Group C match on Wednesday.
Hassan, who came on for Giorgos Masouras in the 84th minute, headed home an inch-perfect cross by former Marseille forward Mathieu Valbuena after a dominant Olympiakos had missed a string of chances.
In a dour first half, Yann M'Vila volleyed over the bar and Youssef El-Arabi had a close-range shot blocked for the home side while Florian Thauvin fired just wide at the other end.
Olympiakos had a goal scrapped for offside after a VAR check in the 52nd minute, with Masouras sweeping in a rebound after Marseille keeper Steve Mandanda parried Valbuena's stinging low shot.
Lazar Randjelovic hit the post for Olympiakos in the 69th minute before the outstanding Mandanda palmed away a Valbuena volley from seven metres.
When the game seemed to be heading for a goalless stalemate, Hassan stepped up and beat Mandanda with an unstoppable downward header into the bottom left corner to give the Greek side a well-deserved win.
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