Galatasaray stun Manchester United in Champions League

It was United's sixth defeat in 10 games this season


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Galatasaray's Argentine forward Mauro Icardi celebrates scoring the team's third goal. — AFP
Galatasaray's Argentine forward Mauro Icardi celebrates scoring the team's third goal. — AFP

Published: Wed 4 Oct 2023, 1:20 AM

Mauro Icardi struck in the 81st minute as Galatasaray beat 10-man Manchester United 3-2 in the Champions League on Tuesday and increased the pressure on manager Erik ten Hag.

The striker had already missed a chance from the penalty spot to put the Turkish team ahead at Old Trafford. But he was more clinical when racing on to Davinson Sanchez's header before lifting a shot over United goalkeeper Andre Onana.

It was United's sixth defeat in 10 games this season and are second in after opening two matches in Group A of the Champions League.

To make matters worse for Ten Hag, his team had twice led through goals from Rasmus Hojlund in each half.

But on both occasions Galatasaray produced quick replies to even the score, while Casemiro was sent off when bringing down Dries Mertens for a penalty in the 76th.

Hojlund fired United ahead in the 17th with a header from close range, but the lead didn’t last long as Wilfried Zaha equalised in the 23rd.

Hojlund scored again in the 67th when he seized on a loose ball from Sergio Oliveira near the halfway line, drove forward and finished past Galatasaray keeper Fernando Muslera.

The visitors were level again four minutes later as Kerem Akturkoglu converted from inside the box.

Soon after Mertens charged into the area when collecting Onana's errant pass, but he was brought down by Casemiro before he could shoot and the Brazilian was shown a second yellow card.

Icardo shot wide from the penalty spot, but made no mistake when through on goal to score the winner minutes later.

Arsenal lose

Arsenal slumped to a first defeat of the season on Tuesday as Lens came from behind to win a pulsating Champions League clash 2-1 in France thanks to a fine second-half strike by Elye Wahi.

Gabriel Jesus gave the Premier League side an ideal start when he opened the scoring in the 14th minute to silence a raucous Stade Bollaert.

But Adrien Thomasson soon brought last season's Ligue 1 runners-up back on level terms and the visitors saw Bukayo Saka limp off before half-time.

Wahi, the 20-year-old striker who became Lens' club-record signing when he joined at the start of the campaign, then fired home in the 69th minute and his side held on for a famous victory.

The result lifts them above Arsenal to the top of Champions League Group B on four points, one above Mikel Arteta's side.

The other game in the group on Tuesday saw PSV Eindhoven and Sevilla draw 2-2 in the Netherlands.

Real beat Napoli

Jude Bellingham’s efforts produced two goals during an eight-minute stretch of the first half in Real Madrid’s 3-2 win at Serie A champion Napoli on Tuesday in the Champions League.

Madrid’s new standout first intercepted a pass from Napoli captain Giovanni Di Lorenzo and immediately set up Vinicius Junior for an equaliser at the Stadio Diego Armando Maradona.

Then the England international slalomed through Napoli’s defense from near midfield before slotting in a goal that was reminiscent of the way Maradona, also an attacking midfielder, used to perform in the stadium now named after him.

Madrid’s winner was charged as an own goal by Napoli goalkeeper Alex Meret following a powerful striker from Federico Valverde that deflected off Di Lorenzo before hitting the crossbar. A leaping Meret then had the last touch but couldn’t prevent it from going into his net.

Leo Ostigard had put Napoli ahead early on with a header by leaping over Dani Carvajal.

Napoli midfielder Piotr Zielinski scored a controversial penalty after the break to make it 2-2.

Madrid top Group C with six points, Napoli and Braga have three points each and Union Berlin is last with zero.

Braga beat Berlin 3-2 earlier.

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