Cristiano Ronaldo (pictured) helped Real Madrid defeat Marseille 3-0 as AC Milan suffered a humiliating 1-0 loss at home to Zurich. Manchester United and Chelsea secured their second win in two games to lead their groups.
AFP - Michael Carrick secured a 2-1 win for Manchester United on Wednesday as the English Premier League champions came back from a goal down to edge Germany's Wolfsburg at Old Trafford and make it a perfect six points from two Champions League games.
Carrick swept home a fine strike 12 minutes from the end, after Ryan Giggs's deflected free-kick had cancelled out Edin Dzeko's shock 57th-minute opener for the visitors.
United coach Sir Alex Ferguson, chasing his third triumph in the event after successes in 1999 and 2008, paid tribute to his side, and Giggs in particular, after the Welsh winger scored his 150th goal for the club.
"I thought it was just a matter of time before we did score," Ferguson told ITV. "They never give in - they always keep on playing."
Giggs, however, was dismissive of his landmark goal.
"Obviously, I was proud to do it, but it was more important we won the game," said the 35-year-old, who added: "We showed great character to come back".
The only dark cloud for United was the sight of Michael Owen going off at half-time with a recurrence of a groin strain that could keep him out for up to three weeks.
United's vanquished 2008 final opponents Chelsea had a first-half goal from Nicolas Anelka to thank for a 1-0 win away to the Cypriots of Apoel Nicosia.
With five-times champions Liverpool having suffered a Tuesday setback at Fiorentina, the onus was on the English sides to showcase the Premier League and United and Chelsea did not disappoint, even if their winning margins were wafer-thin.
In United's Group B, CSKA Moscow bounced back from an opening defeat at Wolfsburg to edge Turkish champions Besiktas 2-1, Alan Dzagoev and Milos Krasic scoring for the Russians with Ismail Koybasi on target for the visitors, already beaten at home by United.
Carlo Ancelotti's Chelsea started off with a Stamford Bridge success over two-time champions Porto and the Portuguese secured a 2-0 success at home to Spain's Atletico Madrid after late goals from Falcao and Rolando.
Elsewhere, former Manchester United star Cristiano Ronaldo scored twice and Kaka once for Real Madrid as the Spaniards, desperate to add a tenth crown after seven barren seasons in Europe, dispatched Marseille 3-0 at the Santiago Bernabeu.
But Group C rivals and seven-times winners AC Milan suffered a humiliating 1-0 home loss to Zurich of Switzerland.
Centre-back Hannu Tihinen scored with a neat first-half backheel to increase the pressure on AC Milan coach Leonardo, whose team have endured a miserable start to the season.
Real, in contrast, are on a roll, though they looked ordinary enough for an hour before three goals in six minutes flattened Marseille.
Ronaldo nudged home the first after 58 minutes after running onto a lofted pass from Pepe - coincidentally just as Giggs was netting for United with the kind of free-kick the Portuguese would normally have taken before his 94 million-euro move to Spain in the summer.
Kaka netted from the spot after Souleymane Diawara had fouled Ronaldo to earn a red card and the contest was over on 63 minutes when, in a goal created by 200 million euros of fresh talent, Kaka fed Karim Benzema, who teed up Ronaldo five yards out.
In Group A, French playmaker Franck Ribery of four-time champions Bayern Munich did his utmost to prise open the defence of two-times winners Juventus but the Bavarians had to settle for a goalless stalemate, while French pace-setters Bordeaux had to wait until the closing minutes for Michael Ciani to head the winner against Israel's Maccabi Haifa.
Date created : 2009-09-30