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drogba 224.88.(Photo by: AP)
Champions League: Drogba leads Chelsea to 2-0 win
Avraham Grant records his second European win in a row; Benayoun unable to prevent Liverpool losing 2-1 at Besiktas.
Didier Drogba scored one goal and set up another Wednesday in Chelsea's 2-0 win over Schalke in the Champions League. It was the second European win in a row for new Chelsea manager Avraham Grant who appears to be turning around the club's bad form from the start of the season. Also Wednesday, Yossi Benayoun was unable to prevent Liverpool falling to its second consecutive Champions League defeat, against Besiktas in Istanbul. The Turkish side beat Rafa Benitez's Reds 2-1. Real Madrid thumped Olympiakos 4-2 and Benfica edged Scottish champion Celtic 1-0 at the Stadium of Light in Lisbon. Chelsea 2, Schalke 04 0 Florent Malouda scored in the fourth minute for Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, taking a header from Drogba and sending in through the legs of Schalke goalkeeper Manuel Meuer. Drogba made it 2-0 in the 47th when he scored from a diving header after taking a cross from Paulo Ferreira. Schalke striker Kevin Kuranyi aggravated a leg injury before the match and was replaced by Soren Larsen. It was Chelsea's first home game in the Champions League since a 1-1 draw against Rosenborg on Septembre 18. The following day, manager Jose Mourinho left and Grant soon took over. Chelsea leads Group B with seven points, followed by Rosenborg with four and Valencia and Schalke with three each. Rosenborg beat Valencia 2-0 in the other Group B game. Besiktas 2, Liverpool 1 In Istanbul, Serdar Ozkan and Bobo scored a goal each Wednesday to help Besiktas claim the win in the city Liverpool won the Champions League in 2006. Bobo crossed inside the area in the 13th minute, and Serdar picked up the loose ball before beating Liverpool goalkeeper Pepe Reina. In the 81st, Bobo met captain Ibrahim Uzulmez's through ball outside the box, drove in and beat Reina to extend the lead. Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard got one back for the visitors in the 85th. The England midfielder sent a diving header into the net as Besiktas' defensive line failed to stop the ball. Besiktas is in third place in the group with three points, while Liverpool is last with one point. Benfica 1, Celtic 0 Oscar Cardozo scored the winning goal in the 87th minute for Benfica Cardozo chesting down a pass from Cristian Rodriguez and volleyed past Celtic goalkeeper Artur Boruc. The hosts dominated much of the match, and Cardozo hit the crossbar and post in two minutes in the second half. Both Benfica and Celtic have three points from three matches in Group D. Real Madrid 4, Olympiakos 2 In Madrid, Robinho scored twice and Raul Gonzalez and substitute Javier Balboa added one apiece to give Real a sweeping victory over 10-man Olympiakos. Raul netted his 58th goal in the competition to give Madrid the lead in the second minute, with Luciano Galletti leveling five minutes later. Olympiakos, which had Vassilis Torosidis sent off in the 13th, took the lead in the 47th minute through Julio Cesar, but Robinho replied with goals in the 68th and 83rd. Substitute Balboa sealed Madrid's win in injury time. The Spanish champion heads Group C with seven points, while Olympiakos lost its unbeaten group record and stayed with four. AC Milan 4, Shakhtar Donetsk 1 AC Milan's Alberto Gilardino and Clarence Seedorf scored two goals each to help the Rossoneri beat Shakhtar Donetsk 4-1 and get back on track in the Champions League. Gilardino, who had only scored twice before in the competition, headed in goals in the sixth and 14th minutes off corners by Milan midfielders Andrea Pirlo and Seedorf. Seedorf volleyed in both his goals in the 62nd and 69th, after Cristiano Lucarelli pulled one back for Shakhtar in the 51st. The result gave Milan only its second victory of the season at the San Siro since beating Benfica 2-1 in the opening match of Group D more than a month ago, and ruined Shakhtar's perfect start to the tournament. Werder Bremen 2, Lazio 1 Boubacar Sanogo and Hugo Almeida scored to give Werder Bremen a 2-1 win against Lazio in the Champions League on Wednesday. Sanogo scored in the 28th and Almeida added another in the 54th as Bremen won for the first time in Group C. Bremen will try to repeat the feat from two years ago when the Germans also opened with two losses and still advanced to the knockout stage. Lazio's goal came from Christian Manfredini in the 82nd minute, a low shot taken after Bremen goalkeeper Tim Wiese pushed away Aleksandar Kolarov's free kick. Sanogo took a pass from Diego and brought it down with his chest, then eluded goalkeeper Marco Ballotta and bounced a close shot off Lazio's Valon Behrami into the goal. Almeida scored on a cross from Clements Fritz, who was gifted the ball from Kolarov, to seal the win at home in front of 38,000 fans. Bremen has three points from three rounds, while Lazio has two. They play each other again in two weeks.
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