What in the world is going on with the Premier League’s top teams competing in the UEFA Champions League? A day after Chelsea and Arsenal slumped to embarrassed defeats, the Manchester clubs — United and City — slogged their respective paths to come-from-behind victories against a pair of Bundesliga sides.
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A recap of Wednesday’s UCL action:
Manchester United 2-1 Wolfsburg — FULL RECAP
Wolfsburg took their early lead at Old Trafford (4th minute) through Daniel Caligiuri, who benefitted greatly from a tragically disorganized Man United backline, most notably from right back Antonio Valencia. Having already lost to PSV Eindhoven on the opening day of the group stage, Louis Van Gaal‘s side faced the possibility of having won zero points from their first two games in Group B.
Juan Mata played the role of hero, though, as the Spanish playmaker chipped in with a goal (from the penalty spot) and one of the most stunning back-heel flicks you’ll see all season, to set up Chris Smalling for the game-winning goal.
Borussia Monchengladbach 1-2 Manchester City — FULL RECAP
Man City waited a bit longer to go a goal behind away to Monchengladbach, thanks solely to the heroics of goalkeeper Joe Hart. Lars Stindl finally put the home side ahead in the 54th minute, on the fourth serious time of asking.
City pulled level through Nicolas Otamendi in the 65th minute and stole all three points from a poor performance when Sergio Aguero converted from the penalty spot in minute 90. City’s Champions League hopes are still alive (for now).
[ MORE: Tuesday’s UCL roundup — Chelsea, Arsenal lose ]
Malmo FF 0-2 Real Madrid
Real Madrid stayed top of Group A (6 points), thanks to a milestone-breaking and record-setting day from Cristiano Ronaldo. The Portuguese’s first goal (WATCH HERE) was the 500th of his professional career. The second was his 323rd goal for Madrid, tying the club’s all-time record, set by Raul, who appeared in 433 more games than Ronaldo.
Juventus 2-0 Sevilla
Goals scored by Alvaro Morata (41st minute) and Simone Zaza (87th) were enough to make Juventus, finalists in last year’s Champions League, a perfect 2-for-2 in group play. With City’s victory over Monchengladbach, Sevilla (3 points) now find themselves in a heated race for second.
Elsewhere in Champions League action
Shakhtar Donetsk 0-3 Paris Saint-Germain
Atletico Madrid 1-2 Benfica
CSKA Moscow 3-2 PSV Eindhoven
FC Astana 2-2 Galatasaray