Wednesday, 1 October 2008

CL - MD2: Wednesday Review

Bordeaux 1-3 RomaA Julio Baptista brace helped Roma secure a crucial 3-1 victory away at ten-man Bordeaux, while Inter were held to a 1-1 draw by Werder Bremen.

Roma staged a determined fight-back against ten-man Bordeaux to clinch their first win in Group A, as second-half goals from Mirko Vucinic and Julio Baptista, who scored twice, boosted the Roman club's hopes of reaching the knockout stage. Defeated surprisingly by CFR Cluj in their opening game, last season's Serie A runners-up were in trouble again in south-west France after an excellent start from the hosts was rewarded by a fine goal from Yoann Gourcuff, who is on loan from AC Milan. But after Henrique's 36th-minute sending off, Roma turned the contest around with two goals in seven minutes, before substitute Baptista completed the victory with his second goal late on.

In the other game, Cluj proved their Matchday 1 victory at Roma was no flash in the pan as they held Chelsea to a goalless draw in their second match in Romania. The result keeps the two sides above Roma with four points.

Inter 1-1 Werder BremenINTER 1-1 WERDER BREMEN
Inter and Werder Bremen shared the spoils in an eventful Group B draw as Claudio Pizarro returned to haunt the Nerazzuri with another goal. Pizarro, who Inter coach Jose Mourinho signed at Chelsea, had scored against Inter for Bayern Munich at the same stage of the 2006/07 Champions League and, after a glaring first-half miss, made amends two minutes past the hour with another crucial strike. That cancelled out Douglas Maicon's opening goal, negated Inter's dominance and kept alive the European hopes of the visitors. Inter, on four points, are dead level at the top with their next opponents Anorthosis Famagusta.

The Cypriots celebrated the nation's independence day in style by beating Greek rivals Panathinaikos in Nicosia for their country's first win in the Champions League group stage. A Jose Sarriegi own goal and Sinisa Dobrasinovic header in the first 15 minutes set Anorthosis on their way and although Dimitris Salpingidis reduced arrears from the spot, substitute Hawar Taher put the result beyond doubt with 12 minutes left.

Barcelona turned defeat into victory in Ukraine as two late goals from substitute Lionel Messi overhauled a Shakhtar Donetsk side seemingly destined for the Champions League Group C summit. The hosts had taken the lead through Ilsinho but failed to hold on for the last few minutes.

Sporting Lisbon got their Champions League campaign off the ground against FC Basel, although it took a bizarre own goal to break the Swiss side's staunch resistance. David Abraham's attempted clearance struck Reto Zanni and rebounded into his own goal ten minutes into the second period and with Basel forced to commit more men forward, Sporting looked increasingly likely to double their advantage and the impressive Derlei duly sealed a first win four minutes from time.

Sergio Aguero was at his scheming best as Atletico Madrid made it two wins in two Group D appearances with a 2-1 victory against Marseille as the Champions League made a triumphant return to the Vicente Calderon. The Argentinian took just four minutes to make his mark with a skilfully-taken opener and although Erik Gerets' team equalised through Mamadou Niang soon after, Raul Garcia re-established Atletico's advantage midway through the half.

In the other game, Robbie Keane's first goal in a Liverpool shirt and Steven Gerrard's 100th added to Dirk Kuyt's early opener to condemn PSV Eindhoven to their second defeat in the group. The Dutch champions did get a well-taken consolation goal by substitute Danny Koevermans late on.

[Tuesday 30 Sept] - [Wednesday 2 Oct]

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