The UEFA Champions League group stage got off to a thrilling start on Tuesday with eight games across Europe.
In one of the early kickoffs, Super Eagles forward Emmanuel Dennis got off the mark, scoring the first goal as his Belgian team Club Brugge stunned Russian league leaders Zenit Saint Petersburg 2-1 away from home.
Dennis was on target in the 63rd minute and while Zenit were gifted an equalizer 10 minutes courtesy of an own goal. Charles De Ketelaere’s 90th-minute goal ensured all three points for Brugge in matchday 1.
Last season, Dennis grabbed the headlines when he bagged a brace against Real Madrid, before firing a stunner against Manchester United in the UEFA Europa League
In the Group F game, Lazio made an impressive return to the UEFA Champions League after 13 years away as they thumped Borussia Dortmund 3-1.
At Camp Nou, Barcelona started their quest for another Champions League crown on a bright note by thrashing Hungarian minnows Ferencvaros 5-1.
This is their first European game since last season’s humiliation by Bayern Munich.
Lionel Messi scored a penalty before the 17-year-old Ansu Fati volleyed in one for himself and then setting up another for Philippe Coutinho.
16 – Barcelona’s Lionel Messi is the first player in Champions League history to score in 16 consecutive seasons; no player in the competition’s history has scored in more seasons overall than the Argentinian (16 – level with Ryan Giggs). Sweet. pic.twitter.com/aOTEPOcQYu
— OptaJose (@OptaJose) October 20, 2020
Ousmane Dembele put the icing on the victory and gave Barcelona some much-needed momentum ahead of Saturday’s Clasico in La Liga against Real Madrid.
The big win by Barcelona sees them sit top of Group G though Juventus had earlier beaten Dinamo Kyiv 2-0 away from home.
Álvaro Morata struck twice in the second half to secure victory for Juve.
Elsewhere, Marcus Rashford struck with three minutes left to help Manchester United beat last season’s finalists PSG 2-1 in Paris.
10 – Manchester United have won 10 consecutive away games in all competitions for the first time in their history. Perfect. pic.twitter.com/ss5j9cD8oU
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) October 20, 2020
Nigerian striker, Odion Ighalo, was an unused substitute in the tie played at Parc Des Princes.
In Germany, Angeliño scored twice in the first 20 minutes to propel RB Leipzig to victory over Turkish newcomers Başakşehir which has Nigerian midfielder Azubieke Okechukwu in their roster.
The group stage of the Champions League will continue on Wednesday with two more Nigerians expected in action.
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