Champions League Review: Man. City have it all to do

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Updated: October 4, 2012
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Manchester City were held to a 1-1 draw by German Bundesliga champions Borussia Dortmund at the Etihad Stadium, though the English champions should count their lucky stars that they weren’t well beaten.

Trailing 0-1 in injury time at the end of the game, City were awarded a very fortunate penalty when the ball inadvertently struck Neven Subotic’s hand inside the box from point blank range from a David Silva shot.  Balotteli converted cooly from the spot.

Even then, the visitors had a chance to win the game when Lewandowski forced a fantastic full length save from Joe Hart, who was the man of the match by some distance.

After the game City boss Roberto Mancini admitted that his side didn’t deserve a point.

City now have just one point from two Champions League games and will do very well to clinch a place in the knockout stages as they are already three points adrift of second placed Dortmund.  Defeat at home to Dortmund would have almost certainly meant elimination though.

Elsewhere in Group D, Spanish champions Real Madrid were meeting Ajax for the third group stage running. The Dutch champions were beaten 4-0 and 3-0 in the previous two seasons, and it was a similar story this time. They lost 4-1 as Cristiano Ronaldo struck a hat-trick and Karim Benzema an amazing overhead kick. José Mourinho’s team are two points clear of Dortmund at the top of Group D.

In Group B, Arsenal overcame Olympicos 3-1 at the Emirates.  After an exchange of goals before half-time, Lukas Podolski’s 56th-minute strike set the Gunners on course for the win they deserved with Aaron Ramsey wrapping up the three points deep in injury time.

After a disjointed opening 42 minutes a moment of individual brilliance from man-of-the-match Gervinho put the Gunners in front, only for Kostas Mitroglou to head in the equalizer on the stroke of half-time.

Arsenal were a side transformed in the second half though with Podolski’s strike followed late on by Ramsey’s sumptuous chip at the death being no more than the Londoners deserved.

Arsenal now have maximum points from their opening two games and it looked as though Schalke 04 would join them at the top of the table but they were denied by a late Montpellier equalizer.

In Group A, Dynamo Kyiv bounced back from their opening defeat in Paris by beating Dinamo Zagreb 2-0 while James Rodríguez scored late to give Porto a 1-0 win against Paris Saint-Germain and put them top of the Group,with PSG’s big money signing Zlatan Ibrahimovic missing a couple of glorious chances for the French side.

On a night of spectaculor goals, Eliseu hit two differing yet sublime strikes as Málaga made it two wind from two starts with a 3-0 triumph away to Anderlecht. In Group C’s other game, a fantastic goalkeeping display by AC Milan captain Christian Abbiati helped his side to a 3-2 win at Zenit St Petersburg.

The Rossoneri had taken a two-goal lead with goals from Emanuelson and Shaarway. Zenit came storming back through goals from Hulk and Shirokov though and were pushing for a winner late on.  An inspired Abbiati kept the Russians out however and Tomáš Hubočan’s own goal 15 minutes from time proved to be the difference between the teams.

    UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE RESULTS WEDNESDAY 3rd OCTOBER 2012:

GROUP A:

Dynamo Kyiv   2-0   Dinamo Zagreb

FC Porto   1-0   Paris Saint Germain

GROUP B:

Arsenal   3-1   Olimpiacos

Schalke   0-2   Montpellier

GROUP C:

Zenit Saint Petersburg   2-3   AC Milan

Anderlecht   0-3   Malaga CF

GROUP D:

Ajax Amsterdam   1-4   Real Madrid CF

Manchester City   1-1   Borussia Dortmund


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