A late Eden Hazard strike ensured Chelsea maintained their unbeaten start to the Champions League while United saw off Benfica in the group stage matches played yesterday.
By SportBrief Reporter
Chelsea remain unbeaten in the champions’ league despite a dominant Roma staging a late fight back from two goals down to lead in a pulsating game at Stamford Bridge.
The English side’s talisman, Eden Hazard, was in impressive form as he scored in each half, his second goal being a headed effort from Pedro’s cross with 15 minutes to go to keep the Blues top of Group C.
The Belgium forward had given Chelsea a two-goal lead in the first half after David Luiz scored a wonderful opener.
But the Serie A side fought back, with Aleksandar Kolarov scoring before Edin Dzeko netted twice in six minutes as the two ex-Manchester City players combined to give the home side the lead.
However, that lead only lasted just five minutes as Hazard levelled to make it 3-3 and keep Chelsea’s two-point lead intact, with Atletico Madrid held to a goalless draw by FK Qarabag in the other Group C game.
Interestingly, it was the first time a Conte side has conceded three goals in a Champions League game, but it could have been more as Dzeko headed wide late on following his superb double.
But, ultimately, Chelsea remain top of the group after three games, as they again dug out a result – having scored a 94th-minute winner against Atletico Madrid last time out in Europe.
On the other hand, a solitary goal from Marcus Rashford was enough to seal all three points for Manchester united as they maintained their 100% champions league record this season, their best UCL start since the Sir Alex Ferguson era.
The Red Devils were made to work hard for it though, as a resolute Benfica defence kept Mourinho’s men at bay for much of the first half.
But Mourinho’s men improved after the break and took control of the contest, forcing the opposition to take hopeful shots outside the box.
The goal eventually did arrive courtesy of some witty play from Rashford helped on by a horrendous mistake by the 18 year-old Benfica goalkeeper Svilar. Rashford spotted the keeper off his line and whipped in a powerful free-kick from outside the box and as Svilar backpedalled to receive the ball, he crossed the goal-line and by the time he had caught the ball, he was already in his own net.
United eventually held on to collect the maximum points away from home.