Champions League: Messi sparks Barcelona rout, Lazio sink Dortmund


Lionel Messi became the first player to score in 16 consecutive Champions League seasons as he guided 10-man Barcelona to a 5-1 victory over Ferencvaros in their Group G opener at the Camp Nou. Messi netted from the penalty spot in the first half for his 116th career goal in the competition, before the lively Ansu Fati added a second.

Philippe Coutinho grabbed another goal early in the second half but Gerard Piqué was dismissed for impeding Tokmac Nguen, leading to a penalty for the Hungarian side that was converted by Igor Kharatin. Any thoughts of a dramatic comeback were quashed as the 17-year-old Pedri netted his first Barça goal after arriving from second-tier Las Palmas at the start of the season, and Ousmane Dembélé added the fifth late on.

Juventus also made a winning start in Group G as they defeated Dynamo Kyiv 2-0 thanks to a pair of classic poacher’s goals from Álvaro Morata. With Cristiano Ronaldo ruled out of the trip to Ukraine following a positive test for Covid-19, Dejan Kulusevski was twinned with Morata up front. A clever backheel by Aaron Ramsey set up Kulusevski just after half-time and although the winger’s shot was saved, Morata was on hand to fire home the rebound. The Spaniard then headed home from close range in the 84th minute.

Lazio’s Ciro Immobile scored against his former club Borussia Dortmund in a 3-1 home victory that marked the Serie A side’s return to the Champions League group phase after a 13-year absence. Their second goal was credited as an own goal by the Dortmund goalkeeper Marwin Hitz while the substitute Jean-Daniel Akpa Akpro got the third as the Italians shrugged off their poor form to secure a winning start to their Group F campaign. Erling Braut Haaland kept up his prolific Champions League scoring form with a second-half goal to make it 2-1 but that was to be the German club’s only consolation.

Also in Group F, Club Brugge stunned Zenit St Petersburg with a stoppage-time winner from Charles De Ketelaere to secure a 2-1 away victory. The game was heading for a 1-1 draw when Brugge put together a slick passing move which ended with Ruud Vormer crossing to leave the unmarked De Ketelaere with a simple finish. Emmanuel Bonaventure Dennis had given Brugge the lead in the 63rd minute before Ethan Horvath, replacing Simon Mignolet in goal for Brugge after Mignolet was diagnosed with the coronavirus, was credited with an own goal for Zenit’s leveller.

Angeliño struck twice in four minutes to give RB Leipzig a 2-0 victory over Istanbul Basaksehir in Group H. Last season’s surprise semi-finalists are unbeaten in all competitions this season and went ahead in the 16th minute when the 23-year-old, on loan from Manchester City beautifully controlled a Kevin Kampl cross, pivoted on the spot and fired into the net. He then completed a quick counterattack after the Turks lost possession in their own half. Angeliño, who has already scored twice in four Bundesliga games, came close to a hat-trick but his powerful volley straight from a corner whizzed past the post.