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Bayern spoil Lewandowski return, Tottenham lose during injury time, Potter ready to lead Chelsea




Champion striker Robert Lewandowski has had an unhappy return to his former home as Bayern Munich beat Barcelona 2-0 in their Champions League Group C match.

Bayern scored twice in four minutes against the run of play through Lucas Hernandez and Leroy Sane in Munich on Tuesday night and are now top of their group on six points from two matches. Barcelona were dominant for 50 minutes and have only themselves to blame for not taking the lead, with Lewandowski coming close twice and Pedri and Gavi also missing golden chances.

Lewandowski left the German club in the summer after eight years to join Barcelona, who are on three points, alongside Inter. Viktoria Plzen are in last place. The hosts, who had keeper Manuel Neuer to thank for keeping them in the game, scored five minutes after the restart with defender Hernandez’s header from a corner.

Before Barcelona had time to regroup, Bayern struck again when Jamal Musiala flicked a perfect pass for Sane and the Germany international slipped the ball past keeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen. Edin Dzeko scored one and created another as Inter Milan cruised to a 2-0 victory over Viktoria Plzen. Inter controlled the match and opened the scoring in the 20th minute when Joaquin Correa picked out an unmarked Dzeko, whose right-footed shot beat keeper Jindrich Stanek.

The Czech champions spent most of the game defending and had Pavel Bucha sent off in the 61st minute for a dangerous tackle. The visitors doubled their lead when Dzeko’s clinical pass allowed Denzel Dumfries to slot home.

Joel Matip headed in an 89th-minute winner as Liverpool beat Ajax Amsterdam 2-1 in their Group A match at Anfield, bouncing back from a 4-1 loss at Napoli in their opening game. Mohamed Salah fired the home side ahead in the 17th minute after being picked out by Diogo Jota.

The lead lasted just 10 minutes before Ajax pulled level with a stunning strike from Mohammed Kudus.
Substitute Darwin Nunez should have won the game for Liverpool in the 83rd minute after he was slipped in by Salah but scuffed his shot wide.

Tottenham conceded two goals in injury time to slip to a 2-0 defeat at Sporting Lisbon.

Spurs were frustrated not to have scored themselves when things went very wrong. Paulinho nodded home from a corner and then, with virtually the last kick, Arthur Gomes sauntered into the box to convert and put Sporting top of Group D with two wins from two.

Olympique de Marseille’s chances of reaching the knockout phase were dented when they were beaten 1-0 at home by Eintracht Frankfurt, their second defeat in as many games. Marseille fell victim to a Jesper Lindstrom second-half goal that put Europa League champions Eintracht in third place in Group D on three points.

Porto’s Champions League struggles continued with a 4-0 home loss to Club Brugge. Brugge scored once in the first half and three times in the second to hand Porto their fourth straight loss in the Champions League going back to last season.

Struggling Bayer Leverkusen left it late to earn a welcome 2-0 home win over Atlético Madrid. Two goals in three minutes from Robert Andrich and Moussa Diaby were enough for Leverkusen to claim just their second win of the season after six defeats in eight games across all competitions.

Meanwhile, Graham Potter has revealed he has never even attended a Champions League match ahead of taking charge of Chelsea for the first time. Potter’s Chelsea debut will also double as his Champions League bow, when the Blues host RB Salzburg at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday.

And the 47-year-old admitted the closest he has come to Europe’s top-tier club competition until now has been to watch on TV. Potter described his switch from Brighton to Chelsea last week as a “whirlwind”. The English coach replaced the sacked Thomas Tuchel at the Stamford Bridge helm.

Potter admitted the opportunity was too compelling to pass up. But asked if he had even attended a Champions League match before, he replied: “Off the top of my head, I don’t think I have.

“But it’s a good time for me to get into the dugout.

“My experiences in the Champions League are just at supporter level.

“But obviously I’ve experienced the Europa League with Ostersund (in Sweden), winning at Galatasaray and getting through the group stage.

“Wherever we would start it would be a heck of an introduction, wherever we start it’s going to be brilliant, so why not start here?

“You have to look at the tradition, the quality, size and ambition of the club here. It’s a completely different challenge from the one I had at Brighton.

“I had three fantastic years there, but I’m very thankful to the owners here for putting their trust in me.”

Chelsea sacked Tuchel on Wednesday last week, the morning after a chastening 1-0 Champions League loss at Dinamo Zagreb. Potter overhauled Ostersund’s entire set-up, driving a small club from Sweden’s fourth tier to the Europa League between 2011 to 2018.

The new Blues boss might be unproven at the very top level, but insisted there is no greater risk in accepting the Stamford Bridge challenge than when he headed out to Sweden.

“If we walk across the road, there’s a risk – that’s what life is,” said Potter.

“I left England aged 30 and I went to a club that had sacked the manager every year for four years.

“I left a secure job and my wife left her business.

“Now I’m here, 17 years later, and I think I’ve taken careful steps with my career.

“Life’s about going outside your comfort zone, taking responsibility and believing there’s more to us than is here now.

“When I went to Sweden I was working in in the ninth tier of English football. There was the bottom, a few more levels, then there was me. I didn’t ever have a plan to be sitting at a level like this.

“But while ambition is good, responsibility is better. And my responsibility is to do my absolute best at every level.”

© AAP





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