Champions league: Milan, Blues through
London, November 29:
Defending champion AC Milan entered the second round of the Champions League with a 1-1 draw with Benfica on Wednesday, and Chelsea advanced with a 4-0 victory against Rosenborg.
Two other qualifying groups are wide open, however, and half of the last 16 won’t be decided until next month’s final games, with nine-time champion Real Madrid under pressure after a 3-2 loss at Werder Bremen. Milan and Chelsea join Barcelona, Manchester United, AS Roma, Inter Milan, Sevilla and Arsenal.
Andrea Pirlo put Milan ahead in the 15th minute, but Maxi Pereira equalised for Benfica in the 20th. Milan still went through because Celtic scored a last-minute goal to beat Shakhtar Donetsk 2-1.
Brandao gave Shakhtar the lead in the fourth minute, but Jiri Jarosik levelled for Celtic a minute before halftime and Massimo Donati scored the winning goal in the first minute of injury time.
Didier Drogba scored the first two of Chelsea’s goals at Rosenborg, giving the Blues 11 points from five games. Despite the heavy loss, Rosenborg stays second with seven points because Schalke and Valencia drew 0-0.
Madrid trailed 3-1 at Werder Bremen after goals by Markus Rosenberg, Boubacar Sanogo and Aaron Hunt. Robinho replied for the Spanish champions in the 14th and Ruud van Nistelrooy added a second in the 72nd.
Madrid and Olympiakos have eight points after the Greek team beat Lazio 2-1. Goran Pandev put Lazio ahead but Luciano Galletti and Darko Kovacevic then scored to give the Greek champions a win.
Liverpool beat FC Porto 4-1 to move closer to a place in the knockout round. Liverpool now has seven points from five games in Group A, where any of the four teams can advance. Porto remain at the top with eight points despite the defeat and Liverpool is even with Marseille, both with seven points. Marseille lost 2-1 at Besiktas, which has six.