Adam Booker·3 October 2023
Adam Booker·3 October 2023
There was another full slate of Champions League group stage games on Tuesday as the competition picked back up. Here is what went down around Europe.
Scorers: Thomasson 25′, Wahi 69′ ; Jesus 14′
It was a raucous opening 15 minutes for Lens’ return to the competition, but the young Gunners remained composed and snatched the lead through a superb Gabriel Jesus strike.
The home crowd was brought back to their feet after a David Raya giveaway lead to a sensational strike from Adrien Thomasson to reclaim parity on the night.
The turnaround was complete for Lens after the break when one of Europe’s hottest young strikers, Elye Wahi, found some room in the box to send the home side into the lead.
Scorers: Højlund 18′ 67′ ; Zaha 23′ Aktürkoğlu 71′, Icardi 81′
The Red Devils found just the start they were looking for when newcomer Rasmus Højlund darted into the box before heading home the opening goal of the game.
The celebrations were cut short only four minutes later however, as former Manchester United man came Wilfried Zaha came back to haunt the Old Trafford crowd, levelling the score with a deflected goal from close-range.
Højlund would be the savior once again in the second half, when a slip in defence allowed the striker in behind to fire United back into the lead.
Somehow Galatasaray pulled it back rapidly once again, this time through Kerem Aktürkoğlu to send the traveling fans into delirium.
It quickly got worse for Manchester United when Casemiro took down Dries Mertens in the box, seeing the visitors awarded a penalty kick and Casemiro sent off for a second yellow card.
Their blushes were spared however when Mauro Icardi sent his attempt from the spot wide of the post.
Icardi righted his wrong just three minutes later when darted in behind and fired Galatasaray into the lead with ten minutes remaining.
Another loss for United sees them sit bottom of Group A after two games.
Scorers: Østigård 19′, Zieliński 51′ ; Vinícius Júnior 27′, Bellingham 34′, Valverde 78′
The home crowd was brought to their feet inside 20 minutes when a Kepa error allowed Leo Østigård to dash in and head home Napoli’s owner, putting an injury-hit Real Madrid in a hole early on.
Fortune returned to Real Madrid’s side however, as a mixup at the back allowed Los Blancos in, and Vinícius Júnior fired home to pull the Spanish side back into the game.
In a shock to nobody, the red-hot Jude Bellingham had is say in the first half, taking the ball off a Napoli player in the box before firing Real Madrid into the lead.
After the break Napoli found their way back into the tie when Piotr Zieliński fired Napoli level from the penalty spot after Nacho was deemed to have handled the ball during a sliding challenge.
The scintillating affair continued late on, and the home crowd was stunned when Federico Valverde sent a thunderbolt into the net from long-range to grab the lead with less than 15 minutes remaining.
Scorers: Lerager 55′ ; Musiala 67′, Tel 83′
While Bayern dominated the possession as expected, they struggled to carve out high-quality scoring chances against an inferior Copenhagen.
There was a shock in the second half however, as Copenhagen snatched the lead through Lukas Lerager to set the home crowd alight.
Bayern would not lie down for their hosts however, and they reclaimed parity a few minutes later through Jamal Musiala.
The Bundesliga giants completed the dramatic turnaround when Mathys Tel capped off a Bayern counterattack to wrap up the win for the visitors.
Scorers: De Jong (P) 86′, Teze 90+5′ ; Gudelj 68′, En-Nesyri 87′
Just three total shots on target in the opening 45 minutes told the story of this Group B clash, as neither side truly threatened to open the scoring before the break.
After the restart however, Sevilla appeared to snatch the lead against the run of play when Adrià Pedrosa fired home to open the scoring on the night, but the left-back was judged to have handled the ball in the build up resulting in the goal being chalked off.
The deadlock was finally broken by the visitors who redeemed themselves past the hour mark when Nemanja Gudelj popped up from defence to fire the LaLiga side into the lead.
A Luuk de Jong penalty drew PSV level in the final ten minutes to ratchet up the drama however.
But it would not stop there, as Youssef En-Nesyri appearing to snatch the win for the visitors in the dying minutes.
PSV wanted to tell their own story however, and a stoppage time strike from Jordan Teze did just that, as they snatched a point at the death.
Scorers: Thuram 62′
It was Benfica who created the biggest chance of the first half, but a volleyed effort from Fredrik Aursnes was palmed wide by Yann Sommer.
Finally the deadlock was broken after the break when Denzel Dumfires picked out Marcus Thuram, who sidefooted home to snatch the lead for Inter.
Benfica did little threaten a turnaround in the dying minutes, and Inter perhaps should have put the game to bed with a couple of big chances of their own.
The win sees Inter move into second place in Group D after two rounds.
Scorers: Becker 30′, 36′ ; Niakate 41′ Bruma 51′ Castro 90+4′
In front of a club record crowd, Union appeared to get off to a flying start when Robin Gosens got in behind and fired the ball home but the goal was chalked out due to an offside, much to the chagrin of the 70,000 or so fans inside the Olympiastadion.
The raaucous Union faithful were finally given reason to celebrate when club captain Sheraldo Becker fired the home side into the lead, making history with the club’s first ever goal in the competition.
Becker followed up his opener with yet another strike just six minutes later after breaking in behind, doubling the hosts’ lead before the break.
The celebrations did not last long however, as Sikou Niakate gave Braga a lifeline by tapping in a parried shot to cut the lead in half.
Braga continued to press after the restart, and they got their reward just five minutes into the second interval when Bruma leathered a long-range shot into the top corner to level the scoreline.
The drama would not stop there however, as Braga somehow snatched the win through André Castro, who came off the bench to fire home with the last kick of the game and stun the home crowd.
Scorers: Oyarzabal 7′, Méndez 27′
The LaLiga outfit got just the start they were looking for in Salzburg, as skipper Mikel Oyarzabal found the back of the net with a shot that appeared to surprise Alexander Schlager in the Salzburg goal.
It went from bad to worse for the home side when Sociedad cut through the midfield before Brais Méndez fired home the Spanish side’s second of the night to silence the home crowd before the half-hour mark.
Real Sociedad didn’t need to get out of second gear in the second half, as Salzburg struggled to put together any attacking moves to claw their way back into the affair.
With the win, Sociedad move into first place in Group D, with Inter and Benfica still to play.