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Manchester City remain favourites to stay as kings of Europe for another year, after they beat RB Leipzig 3-1 in a standout game on our UEFA Champions League matchday two review, making it six points from six in the group stage.
Bayern Munich, Real Madrid and FC Barcelona will also fancy their chances after taking maximum points from the opening two matchdays.
Performance of the week – Manchester United 2-3 Galatasaray
Galatasaray were drawn from pot four into Group A, and despite Manchester United’s poor start to the season, not many would have expected the Turks to win at Old Trafford.
Rasmus Hojlund was United’s only bright spark, and bagged a brace on Tuesday night, but goals from former Red Devils winger Wilfried Zaha, Kerem Akturkoglu and Mauro Icardi won it for the visitors – who came from behind twice.
Best fans in the world. Period. 💛❤️ pic.twitter.com/73ZRzHo6wV
— Galatasaray EN (@Galatasaray) October 3, 2023
Casemiro was also sent off for the hosts, and Icardi missed a penalty, but the visitors edged an entertaining encounter.
The result leaves Galatasaray on four points after two games, and favourites to qualify for the knockouts ahead of United, who have zero points.
Star Man – Davinson Sanchez
Despite conceding twice, Sanchez was key in Galatasaray winning the game. The ex-Spurs defender provided two assists, and no player made more clearances (six) than him.
Galatasaray have won every match Sanchez has played in this season, and he looks to be enjoying a turn of fortunes in Turkey.
UEFA Champions League matchday two review – Honourable mentions
RC Lens produced another stunning performance against Premier League opposition, beating Arsenal 2-1 in France on Tuesday. while Newcastle United stunned French giants PSG 4-1 at St. James’ Park.
Lens 2-1 Arsenal
Lens came back from a goal down to stun Arsenal, and top their group after two matchdays. Gabriel Jesus gave the Gunners the lead, but Adrien Thomasson levelled with a stunning finish a few minutes later.
Elye Wahi produced an acrobatic assist for the equaliser, and was undoubtedly the player of the match as he grabbed the winner with a first-time curling effort. The result also retains Lens’ unbeaten record against Arsenal in the UCL, after a draw and a win in the autumn of 1998.
Newcastle 4-1 PSG
Just 24 hours later, Newcastle picked up the slack for English sides against French opposition, and demolished Ligue 1 holders PSG 4-1.
St. James’ Park was a fortress for their first UCL home game in two decades. The night was made extra special by the fact that two Geordie natives (Dan Burn and Matty Longstaff) got on the scoresheet, as well as Miguel Almiron and Fabian Schar.
Lucas Hernandez grabbed a consolation for PSG, but with the visitors boasting world-class talent like Kylian Mbappe, the Magpies will feel that this was a big scalp.
UEFA Champions League matchday two review – Final Word
Manchester City will still fancy themselves to win the UCL, especially with maximum points from their opening two games, and should qualify from their group easily.
The usual suspects like Real Madrid and Bayern Munich look like their closest challengers at this stage, although 2022/23 finalists Inter Milan have four points from their opening two matches and could go far again.
The surprise packages look to be Newcastle, who have four points in the ‘group of death’, while Manchester United have perhaps been the most disappointing with zero points from their opening two matches.
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