By JOHN BOSCHINI
It seemed like an easy three points for Inter Milan as they opened UEFA Champions League play against Turkish replacements Trabzonspor, but the 2010 European champions were shocked with a 1-0 defeat at home.
Inter couldn't convert a plethora of chances and were eventually made to pay with a well-taken goal from Ondrej Celustka with 15 minutes to play. Inter, which fell to a disappointing 4-3 loss to Palermo to open Serie A play, finds itself at the bottom of Group B.
Inter recorded seven shots on goal, but Trabzonspor goalkeeper, Tolga Zengin, was up to the task and notched a shutout. Celustka's goal came from the top of the box with the Czech defender's smashing home a rebound off the post.
Manchester United managed to grab an away point despite fielding a weakened side as they drew 1-1 with Benfica in Portugal.
The ageless Ryan Giggs fired home a stunning equalizer just before halftime to cancel out an equally impressive opener from Oscar Cardozo. Both teams had several chances in the second half but in the end settled for a share of the spoils.
United manager Alex Ferguson should be happy with the draw after making eight changes from the side that squashed Bolton in anticipation of this weekend's clash with Chelsea.
United's noisy neighbors, Manchester City, opened their Champions League campaign with a thrilling 1-1 draw with Napoli in a game that saw a lot more offense than the scoreline suggests.
Both teams hit the woodwork early on with Napoli's Ezequiel Lavezzi's superb effort coming back off the crossbar in the 19th minute, and Yaya Toure seeing his shot careen of the crossbar just before halftime. The visiting Italians took a surprising lead with Edinson Cavani's goal in the 69th minute, but Aleksander Kolarov's curling free kick salvaged a draw for City.
Bayern Munich's quest to survive the so-called "Group of Death" is off to a good start with a 2-0 victory over Villarreal. Toni Kroos scored within the first 10 minutes, and Rafinha provided an insurance goal late on as the 2010 runners-up snatched a surprising road victory. Bayern, which is also top the Bundesliga, is showing signs of a resurgence after a last season's disappointment.
Real Madrid got off to a relatively easy victory in their Group D opener with a 1-0 victory over Dinamo Zagreb. Angel Di Maria finally broke through for Madrid in the 53rd minute with a shot into the top corner. Worryingly for Madrid will be the imminent suspension of Marcelo after he was shown a red card in the 73rd minute.
Madrid remain top of the group following Ajax and Lyon's listless 0-0 draw in Amsterdam. Ajax had the majority of possession but Lyon, which has advanced past the group stages in every tournament except 2003, never surrendered a goal.
CSKA Moscow battled back from a two-goal deficit to earn a point from Lille in France thanks to a brace from Seydou Doumbia. Moussa Sow and Benoit Pedretti put the French champions ahead within an hour but splendid goals from the Ivorian international earned a point for the Russians.
FC Basel outlasted Otelul Galati for a 2-1 victory in a match that saw both teams reduced to 10 men. Fabian Frei and Alexander Frei's penalty were enough to overcome Marius Pena's goal. Adrian Salageanu was sent off for Otelul, while Benjamin Huggel was ejected for Basel.
Manchester City 1, Napoli 1
Bayern Munich 2, Villareal 0
Trabzonspor 1, Inter Milan 0
CSKA Moscow 2, Lille 2
Benfica 1, Manchester United 1
FC Basel 2, Otelul Galati 1
Ajax 0, Lyon 0
Real Madrid 1, Dinamo Zagreb 0
What did you think of today's results? Shocked by Inter's upset? Confident both Manchester teams can still advance? Impressed with Real Madrid, or did you expect more?
Share your thoughts below.