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UCL Wrap: Onana’s Mistakes, Bellingham Saves Real Madrid, and the Top Talking Points
- Manchester United's disastrous start to the season continued unabated
- Meanwhile, Jude Bellingham continued his purple patch for Real Madrid
- Sports Brief looks at all the talking points from Wednesday's UCL games
Wednesday night brought about a thrilling continuation of Europe's top club competition, with multiple matches filled with drama and excitement.
Arsenal marked their return to the Champions League on September 20 with a convincing win against PSV Eindhoven at the Emirates Stadium.
In contrast, Manchester United had a forgettable night, setting an unwanted record in their 4-3 defeat against six-time champions, Bayern Munich, The Telegraph reports.
Sports Brief considers four key takeaways from the second matchday of the 2023/24 UCL group stage:
1. Andre Onana's mistakes cost Man United
Man United's season has gotten off to its worst start since 1987, compounded by breaking an unwanted 45-year-old record. This came after they suffered a 4-3 defeat to Bayern Munich in their opening UCL group stage match at the Allianz Arena on Wednesday night.
Erik ten Hag's team was once again plagued by defensive vulnerabilities, with new goalkeeper, Andre Onana conceding a Leroy Sane strike that slipped under his body, giving the hosts the lead just before the half-hour mark.
Despite a resilient fightback and three goals scored, Bayern's sharp attack ensured they secured all three points in a chaotic encounter.
2. Jude Bellingham rescues Real Madrid
Jude Bellingham's spectacular beginning with Real Madrid continued in superlative fashion as he netted a stoppage-time winner against Champions League newcomers, Union Berlin at the Santiago Bernabeu Stadium, according to the BBC.
The home team appeared poised for a frustrating goalless draw, struggling to breach the resilient Bundesliga outfit.
However, the former Borussia Dortmund star found the net from close range with virtually the final kick of the Group C encounter, securing his sixth goal in as many matches and delivering all three points for Carlo Ancelotti's squad.
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3. Arsenal gun down PSV in scintillating style
Arsenal's return to Europe's premier club competition was nothing short of a fairy tale, marked by a comfortable victory over PSV Eindhoven, per Sky Sports.
Their six-year absence was forgotten as a dazzling offensive performance led to goals from Bukayo Saka, Leandro Trossard, Gabriel Jesus, and Martin Odegaard, resulting in a commanding 4-0 win.
The outcome propels Arsenal to the top of Group B, following Angelo Fulgini's equaliser that cancelled out Lucas Ocampos' opener, leading to Lens securing a 1-1 draw against Sevilla on the road.
4. Red-hot Lautaro saves Inter's blushes
Lautaro Martinez rescued a 1-1 draw against Real Sociedad with an 87th-minute equaliser following Brais Mendez's early goal, Eurosport reports.
After their commanding performance against city rivals AC Milan in the Derby della Madonnina, the Nerazurri faced a tough challenge and had to score late to secure a point in Spain.
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While last season's Champions League runners-up can take solace in salvaging a point from a near-defeat, Sociedad will regret their missed opportunities in front of the goal in their return to the elite level after a decade's absence.
Onana warned over costly mistakes
Earlier, Sports Brief reported on Man United legend, Rio Ferdinand firing a warning to Onana after a costly mistake against Bayern Munich in the UCL.
The Cameroonian shot-stopper's signing came with a lot of optimism but he has so far failed to live up to the hype since his major move to England.
During United's first group game in this season's Champions League, Onana could not keep a clean sheet, including what fans dubbed an 'easy goal'.