LONDON: Cristiano Ronaldo and Wayne Rooney led the goal glut as the Champions League group stage made a lively start across Europe last night.
Ronaldo celebrated his £17m new contract by scoring a hat-trick as Real Madrid shrugged off the fierce reputation of Istanbul’s Ali Sami Yen Stadium with a crushing 6-1 win over Galatasaray in Group B.
Isco hit Real’s 33rd minute opener against the run of play but his goal sparked the visitors into life as they added two more from Karim Benzema and Ronaldo’s first of the night.
Ronaldo netted his second in the 66th minute from a free-kick taken by Gareth Bale who had arrived as a substitute moments earlier, Benzema made it 5-0 on 81 minutes, and after Umut Bulut had grabbed a late consolation Ronaldo completed his hat-trick in injury time.
In the other Group B fixture, Fabio Quagliarella’s 54th minute equaliser salvaged a 1-1 draw for Juventus at Kobenhavn who led through Nicolai Jorgensen’s 14th minute strike.
England forward Rooney scored twice as Manchester United beat Bayer Leverkusen 4-2 at Old Trafford in Group A. Rooney volleyed United’s opener on 22 minutes but the home side were shocked by Simon Rolfe’s equaliser for the Germans with a deflected shot nine minutes into the second half.
Robin Van Persie put United back in front with an acrobatic effort before Rooney netted his 200th United goal from a long clearance by David De Gea on 70 minutes. Antonio Valencia made it 4-1 before Omer Toprak scored a late consolation for the visitors.
Real Sociedad failed to make their early dominance pay in their Group A clash with Shakhtar Donetsk in Spain, and the Ukrainians wound up 2-0 winners with two second half goals from Alex Teixeira.
Defending champions Bayern Munich eased back into Champions League life with a powerful 3-0 win over CSKA Moscow at the Allianz Arena in their opening match in Group D.
David Alaba, Mario Mandzukic and Arjen Robben scored for the Germans who served notice of their intent with a dominant performance on a night when they could have scored more.
Alaba fired the opener from a third minute free-kick and Mandzukic came close twice before making it 2-0 four minutes from the break with a header from Arjen Robben’s cross.
Robben made the game safe in the 68th minute when he scored Bayern’s third with a superb volley from an Alaba lay-off.
Also in Group D Manchester City made an equally strong impression with three goals in 10 second half minutes to sink Viktoria Plzen 3-0 in the Czech Republic.
City struggled to get going but opened the scoring through Edin Dzeko three minutes after the break and Yaya Toure lashed home a stunning second in the 53rd minute. Sergio Aguero’s neat shot on the turn sealed City’s comfortable win five minutes later.
In Group C, Paris Saint-Germain withstood a bright opening from Olympiacos to run out 4-1 winners in Greece.
Vladimir Weiss hit the woodwork twice for the home side in the early stages before Edinson Cavani gave the visitors a 19th minute lead against the run of play.
Weiss grabbed a richly deserved equaliser six minutes later but Thiago Motta restored the Ligue 1 side’s lead with a 68th minute header. Thiago’s second five minutes later sealed the win and Marquinhos scored a fourth for the visitors four minutes from time.
Benfica edged home 2-0 against Anderlecht courtesy of two first half goals, Filip Djuricic giving the Portuguese side the lead after just four minutes and Luisao scoring the second on the half-hour.