Cristiano Ronaldo added another two goals to his growing Real Madrid collection as the Spanish giants continued their barnstorming start to the season by seeing off 10-man Marseille 3-0 with a second-half blitz at the Bernabeu.
Madrid struggled to make any headway in the opening period, but three goals in six second-half minutes from big-money signings Ronaldo (two) and Kaka ensured Manuel Pellegrini’s men a seventh successive competitive victory this campaign.
However, Marseille will be angry about the 60th-minute refereeing decision that left them down to 10 men and gave Kaka the chance to double Madrid’s lead from the penalty spot, with Souleymane Diawara being penalised for a hard but seemingly fair sliding challenge on Ronaldo.
That tackle earned Diawara his second yellow card and Kaka rolled home the resulting spot-kick to leave Madrid in total control and well on their way to a second successive Champions League triumph following their 5-2 win over FC Zurich.
However, while Madrid remain in cruise control, Group C’s other big name suffered a shock defeat with AC Milan losing 1-0 at home to FC Zurich.
A classy goal by Finnish defender Hannu Tihinen piled on misery on coach Leonardo as the Rossoneri’s struggles continue.
Tihinen got behind Milan Gajic’s cross from the right and back-heeled the ball into the back of the net after 10 minutes.
Ryan Giggs’ 150th goal for Manchester United rescued the Red Devils as they came back from a goal down to beat Wolfsburg 2-1 at Old Trafford.
Edin Dzeko had given the Germans a shock lead, but Giggs’ deflected free-kick levelled matters before Michael Carrick won it 12 minutes from time.
Also in Group B, CSKA Moscow put their defeat to Wolfsburg behind them to see off a late spell of pressure from Besiktas and claim a 2-1 victory at the Luzhniki Stadium.
Alan Dzagoev, who was on target in the 3-1 defeat to the Wolves, gave CSKA an early lead with his superb seventh-minute strike before Milos Krasic made it two in the second half.
Besiktas finally put together some meaningful possession in the last few minutes, capped off with a memorable finish from Ekrem Dag.
Chelsea stuttered to an unconvincing 1-0 victory over Apoel Nicosia thanks to a first-half goal from Nicolas Anelka.
The Blues, hammered 3-1 by Wigan in the Barclays Premier League last Saturday, produced another lacklustre performance against the Cypriot champions.
But victory keeps Chelsea top of Group D with a 100% record, even if the performance does not bode well for their home clash with title rivals Liverpool at Stamford Bridge on Sunday.
Second-half goals from Falcao and Rolando secured Porto a deserved win against struggling Atletico Madrid in Group D’s other game.
Falcao opened the scoring with a neat back-heel 15 minutes from time and Rolando snaffled a rebound to clinch the points seven minutes later after a fine save from substitute goalkeeper David De Gea.
The result earned the Portuguese side a first pool win following their opening loss to Chelsea, but heaped further misery on Abel Resino’s visitors. Atletico lie in La Liga’s relegation zone and were booed off the pitch after being held to a goalless draw by minnows Apoel a fortnight ago.
Bayern Munich were held to a frustrating goalless draw by Juventus in a largely one-sided Champions League encounter at the Allianz Arena.
Juventus will be the happier of the two sides after emerging with a point despite a dominant Bayern performance in the first period, with Franck Ribery pulling the strings and carving out the hosts’ best chances from the midfield.
The stalemate leaves Bayern on four points but still top of Group A after two matches, while Ciro Ferrara’s Juve are third in the standings after their second draw in succession.
Bordeaux moved up to second as they picked up their first win, making hard work of beating Maccabi Haifa 1-0.
The French champions began the night as favourites, but the game could have gone either way in the first half.
Bordeaux were much improved after the break, but still had to wait until seven minutes from time for Michael Ciani’s header to settle it.
Maccabi ended the game with 10 men as Baram Kayal’s frustrations got the better of him and he was sent off three minutes from time.