Thursday, November 08, 2007

Champions League Matchday 4: Manchester United 4-0 Dynamo Kiev

There's not a lot to say about this game. It was a comfortable win for United, against decidedly inferior opposition. United are now the only team in the competition with a perfect record so far, and they've guaranteed their place in the last 16 with two games to spare.

Dynamo Kiev still don't have a single point, but they put up a bit of a fight at the beginning of the game, until Gerard Pique broke the deadlock with a header from a free kick that had pinged around the box and off the back of Carlos Tevez. And it was Tevez who scored the second goal, just six minutes later, winning the ball in his own half and exchanging passes with Wayne Rooney before unleashing a powerful shot.

The stats said that United had had a quite incredible 75% of possession by halftime, and although they were slightly less dominant in the second half, they didn't need to be. Dynamo Kiev had a few decent chances but failed to capitalize, which could have changed the game. Wayne Rooney added a third goal in the 75th minute with a perfect volley from Nani's cross, and Cristiano Ronaldo finished things off with a late goal, dinking inside from the left wing and firing it into the far corner.

And in the other games:

  • Lyon 4-2 Stuttgart: Lyon took an early 2-0 lead, but Stuttgart twice pulled within one goal of a draw before Juninho's late goal guaranteed the win that kept their hopes of progressing alive.

  • Barcelona 2-0 Rangers: Barca consolidated their position atop Group E with a straightforward victory, with Rangers unable to repeat their stubborn performance of two weeks ago.

  • Sporting Lisbon 2-2 Roma: Roma opened the scoring in the fourth minute, before Sporting bounced back with two goals from Liedson. But they were denied the three points by a heartbreaking last-minute own-goal that allowed Roma to equalize.

  • Inter Milan 4-2 CSKA Moscow: Inter went behind 2-0 within the first half-hour, but came back to equalize almost immediately and then went on to score twice more and maintain their position at the top of the group.

  • Fenerbahce 2-0 PSV Eindhoven: Fenerbahce widened their lead over PSV in Group G with two first-half goals and moved closer to qualifying for the next round for the first time.

  • Steaua Bucharest 0-2 Sevilla: Two goals from Renato were enough for Sevilla to defeat Steaua Bucharest, who have yet to earn a single point in the group.

  • Slavia Prague 0-0 Arsenal: Arsenal fielded a weakened team and were unable to do more than draw in Prague, but they've qualified for the knockout stages nonetheless after this uninspiring result.

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