Juve held at home by Lech, holders Atletico lose

Juventus were astonishingly held to a 3-3 home draw by Lech Poznan as the Europa League group stage kicked off while holders Atletico Madrid began the defence of their crown with a 1-0 defeat at Aris Salonika.

Last Updated: Sep 17, 2010, 09:49 AM IST

Turin: Juventus were astonishingly held to a 3-3 home draw by Lech Poznan as the Europa League group stage kicked off while holders Atletico Madrid began the defence of their crown with a 1-0 defeat at Aris Salonika.

Manchester City won 2-0 at Salzburg in a clash of two big-spending clubs who had been aiming for the Champions League but had to settle for the second-tier competition.

None of Italy`s four representatives won a game between them while three of the four Spanish teams were beaten.

Juve`s Brazil World Cup villain Felipe Melo gave away an early penalty as the Italians fell two goals behind with Artjoms Rudnevs grabbing a hat-trick for the visitors including a stoppage-time equaliser in their Group A match.
Felipe Melo, who enhanced his reputation for reckless tackling by getting sent off in Brazil`s World Cup quarter-final defeat by Netherlands, produced a familiarly clumsy challenge in the 13th minute and Rudnevs opened his account from ths spot.

The Latvian was on target again on the half hour, snapping up a rebound, but Juve equalised when defender Giorgio Chiellini scored either side of halftime before Alessandro del Piero put them ahead in the 68th minute with a superb left-foot strike.
However, the Poles left Italy with a point when Rudnevs equalised in the second minute of added time.

Aris`s Spanish forward Javito scored just before the hour against Atletico in Group B, running onto a flicked pass by Carlos Ruiz and firing a powerful shot into the corner, as they preserved an unbeaten home record in European competition.

Bureau Report