CL review: Roma hold Barca, Bayern cruise

Date published: Wednesday 16th September 2015 10:54

Alessandro Florenzi, Roma Barcelona TEAMtalk

Alessandro Florenzi’s stunning strike gave Roma a 1-1 draw with Barcelona, while Thomas Muller scored twice in Bayern Munich’s win over Olympiacos.

Group E

European champions Barcelona saw their perfect start to the season ended after they were held to a 1-1 draw by Roma at the Stadio Olimpico in Wednesday’s Champions League Group E opener.

Luis Suarez gave Barca a 21st-minute lead but Roma equalised eight minutes later with a wonder goal from defender Alessandro Florenzi.

Florenzi drilled a right-footed shot from just over the halfway line and the ball cannoned into the back of the net off a post.

Barca had plenty of chances to move back in front and were unlucky not to do so in the 78th minute when Lionel Messi, making his 100th Champions League appearance, saw his left-footed shot from the right side of the area hit the crossbar.

Roma held on for a point to deny their former coach Luis Enrique a perfect start to the competition.

Hakan Calhanoglu scored a brace either side of Javier Hernandez’s first goal for Bayer Leverkusen as the German side beat BATE Borisov 4-1 at home.

Leverkusen took the lead in the fourth minute through a delightful Admir Mehmedi effort, only for their Belarusian opponents to draw level nine minutes later via Nemanja Milunovic’s deflected header.

An even bigger deflection saw the hosts go back in front two minutes into the second half when Calhanoglu’s shot diverted in off Dzyanis Palyakow.

Hernandez, signed last month from Manchester United, then wrapped things up in the 59th minute, marking his first Leverkusen start with a tidy right-footed finish, before Calhanoglu converted a 75th-minute penalty.

Group F

Thomas Muller’s scoring hot-streak continued as he netted a brace to steer Bayern Munich to a 3-0 win at Olympiacos.

Muller put the Bayern ahead in the 52nd minute with a lofted effort from outside the box which looked as if it had been intended as a cross.

Substitute Mario Gotze then lashed into the net with a minute of normal time remaining, before Muller converted a penalty in stoppage time to take his tally for the season to eight Bayern goals and 11 overall, including those scored for Germany.

Arsenal lost 2-1 to Dynamo Zagreb.

Group G

Dynamo Kiev substitute Vitaliy Buyalskyi struck a late equaliser to rescue a point for his side as their clash against Porto ended 2-2 at the Olympic Stadium.

Midfielder Buyalskyi, a second-half replacement for Oleh Gusev, ran onto a mis-hit shot in the 89th minute to fire home and deny the Portuguese victory after Vincent Aboubakar’s double had cancelled out Gusev’s opener for the Russians.

Chelsea recovered from Eden Hazard’s early penalty miss to beat Maccabi Tel Aviv 4-0.

Group H

Zenit St Petersburg got their Champions League campaign off to a winning start as they recorded a 3-2 victory at Valencia.

Brazilian forward Hulk struck twice to give the visitors a 2-0 half-time lead.

Valencia reduced the arrears in the 54th minute when Joao Cancelo’s shot took a heavy deflection off Axel Witsel to beat Zenit goalkeeper Yuri Lodygin.

Substitute Andre Gomes equalised in the 73rd minute but Valencia’s joy was short-lived as Witsel struck the winner three minutes later to ensure the Russian giants began their European campaign with an away victory.

Gent fought back to clinch a point in a heroic display after having two men sent off in their first ever Champions League group match which ended 1-1 against Lyon.

The Belgian champions, who had Brecht Dejaegere and Thomas Foket both sent off, fell behind to Christophe Jallet’s second-half header but hit back through Danijel Milicevic’s super strike.

Gent goalkeeper Matz Sels saved the day for the home side in the 88th minute when he denied Alexandre Lacazette from the penalty spot.


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