UEFA Champions League: Ronaldo Sees Red on Juventus Debut, Lyon Stun Manchester City
The UEFA Champions League rarely fails to disappoint. And the first matchday of a brand new season has started on the same note. On the very first day, the likes of Liverpool and Barcelona proved their title-credentials while the likes of Tottenham Hotspur and Paris Saint Germain failed to start the season on a good note.
Well, the second day of the competition was equally exciting. So without further ado, let’s get to the results and take a closer look at just what happened on the opening matchday of the UEFA Champions League group stage.
Lyon stun Manchester City:
English Premier League champions, Manchester City suffered a 2-1 defeat at the hands of Lyon at their home. One of the favourites of this year’s competition, City suffered their third consecutive defeat in UEFA Champions League after losing the two legs against Liverpool in the quarterfinals last season.
Maxwel Cornet and Nabil Fekir scored for the visitors before Bernardo Silva pulled one back for the home side. With coach Pep Guardiola watching the game from the stands, City made several mistakes one of which led to the opening goal.
“We saw two very different halves. We conceded many counter-attacks, and at this level, you get punished,” said City assistant coach Mikel Arteta, who was filling in for Guardiola. “If you give cheap goals away, it is difficult.”
In the other Group F game earlier on Wednesday, Brazilian youngster Maycon came off the bench to rescue Shakhtar Donetsk a 2-2 draw in their game against group-stage debutants Hoffenheim in Kharkiv.
Ronaldo sees Red, but Juventus win:
Cristiano Ronaldo‘s dreams of starting his UEFA Champions League career with Juventus ended in a tearful manner, as the five-time Champions League winner was shown a controversial straight red just before the half-hour mark after a collision with Valencia defender Jeison Murillo. A tearful Ronaldo then made his way out of the field.
Juventus, however, did not miss their latest star much, as they won the game 2-0 thanks to two penalties from Miralem Pjanic. The Italian champions defended well after that to maintain their lead. Wojciech Szczesny also saved a Daniel Parejo spot-kick in the final minutes of injury-time.
Pogba inspired United to an emphatic win
In another game of Group H, Manchester United thrashed Young Boys by 3-0. Paul Pogba scored twice and set up one for Anthony Martial to ease the pressure off Jose Mourinho.
Real Madrid start defence in style:
Defending champions, Real Madrid showed they are still severe contenders for the biggest stage despite seeing Ronaldo leave for Juventus in the close-season, as Julen Lopetegui’s men saw off Roma 3-0.
Isco curled home a sumptuous 45th-minute free-kick to give the 13-time champions the lead. Gareth Bale and new signing Mariano Diaz then sealed the win.
“I thought the performance was very good tonight; the only disappointment was that we didn’t score more,” said Bale.
In another game of Group G in UEFA Champions League, CSKA Moscow came back from two goals down to salvage a 2-2 draw at Viktoria Plzen, with Everton loanee, Nikola Vlasic scoring an injury-time penalty.
Five-time champions, Bayern Munich, got their Group E campaign off to a solid start. Riding on goals from Robert Lewandowski and Renato Sanches, Niko Kovac’s men eased to a 2-0 triumph against Benfica in Lisbon. Ajax cruised to a 3-0 victory over AEK Athens in Amsterdam.
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