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Champions League | Bayern beat Man United 4-3; Arsenal thrash PSV

Bayern’s Harry Kane celebrates after scoring his side’s third goal from a penalty kick during the Champions League group A soccer match between Bayern Munich and Manchester United at the Allianz Arena stadium in Munich, Germany, Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2023.

Bayern’s Harry Kane celebrates after scoring his side’s third goal from a penalty kick during the Champions League group A soccer match between Bayern Munich and Manchester United at the Allianz Arena stadium in Munich, Germany, Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2023.
| Photo Credit: AP

Bayern Munich struck twice in four minutes in the first half to set them on their way to a 4-3 victory over an embattled Manchester United on Wednesday and make a winning start in Champions League Group A.

Goals from Leroy Sane and Serge Gnabry in the 28th and 32nd minutes put the hosts firmly in the driving seat with injury-hit United, who have now lost their last three matches, pulling a goal back in the 49th through Rasmus Hojlund’s deflected effort.

United, who lost 3-1 to both Brighton & Hove Albion and Arsenal in their previous two games, have now conceded three goals or more in three consecutive matches for the first time since December 1978.

Bayern crushed United’s hopes of a comeback four minutes later with a Harry Kane penalty, awarded for a handball by Christian Eriksen, to restore their two-goal cushion.

Casemiro slotted in from close range in the 88th minute but substitute Mathys Tel scored once more for Bayern in stoppage time. Casemiro headed in another for United with the last move of the game.

The hosts, unbeaten now in their last 28 Champions League group stage home matches also hit the woodwork through Sane and Thomas Mueller in the second half.

Arsenal back in style

Arsenal enjoyed a triumphant return to the Champions League with a 4-0 thrashing of outclassed PSV Eindhoven in Group B as their impressive start to the season continued on Wednesday.

Six years after their last appearance among Europe’s elite, goals by Bukayo Saka, Leandro Trossard and Gabriel Jesus before halftime paved the way for an easy victory, with captain Martin Odegaard also on target in the second half.

Saka, one of several Arsenal players making their debuts in the competition, struck from close range after eight minutes and Trossard’s low shot made it 2-0 12 minutes later before Jesus hammered Arsenal’s third to effectively wrap up the points.

Arsenal, who have taken 13 points from their opening five Premier League games, travel to Lens next week while PSV must try to repair some of the damage at home to Sevilla.

The last time Arsenal played in the Champions League they suffered a chastening 10-2 aggregate drubbing at the hands of Bayern Munich, since when their perennial place amongst the Premier League’s top-four became a fading memory.

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