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Galacticos gunned down at home by Arsenal

Thierry Henry scored in 47th minute, eluding four defenders, to set up a 1-0 upset win over Real Madrid on Tuesday.

india Updated: Feb 22, 2006 13:43 IST

Thierry Henry scored in Arsenal's 1-0 upset win at Real Madrid in the Champions League on Tuesday, while AC Milan ended Bayern Munich's 15-match winning streak at home with a 1-1 draw.



Europe's top club competition resumed after a 2 1/2-month break this week with the first leg of the opening knockout round. In other matches on Tuesday, defending champion Liverpool lost 1-0 at Benfica and Lyon won 1-0 at PSV Eindhoven.

Arsenal traveled to Madrid with a youthful defense, without the experienced Dennis Bergkamp and low on confidence after their poor recent record. But the Gunners had three chances to score in the opening 10 minutes— Jose Antonio Reyes, Fredrik Ljungberg and Henry all going close.

Henry scored in the 47th minute, eluding four defenders to net past Madrid goalkeeper Iker Casillas. It's the first time an English club has won at Madrid's Santiago Bernabeu stadium.

"For a very long time, I didn't see an Arsenal team like that," Henry said. "We were brilliant defensively, but more importantly we were not scared to play. You see that as soon as Arsenal is not scared to play, we can play good football.

"We have only won one game, we are not there yet so we have to stay calm and focus."

Real Madrid had two English players— David Beckham and Jonathan Woodgate— starting against Arsenal. Woodgate only lasted eight minutes before coming off with a hamstring injury. Six-time champions AC Milan played five-time winner Bayern Munich in Germany.

Michael Ballack gave Bayern the lead in the 23rd minute with a right-footed shot.

Milan leveled in the 58th when Valerien Ismael handled the ball and a penalty was awarded. Andriy Shevchenko scored by sending Bayern goalkeeper Michael Rensing the wrong way.

Regular goalkeeper Oliver Kahn warmed up but didn't play because of a bruised thigh. "That goal really affected us. We played a poor second half," Bayern coach Felix Magath said. "Clearly this wasn't our ideal result."

Milan and Bayern have met three times— in 1968, 1990 and 2002— and each time the Italians have advanced.

Bayern moved into Allianz Arena this season— a 70,000-seat stadium that will host the World Cup opener— and had won all of their previous 15 matches there, including Champions League games. Benfica's Brazilian defender, Luisao, scored six minutes from the end in Lisbon, Portugal.

"The first leg is always a cautious affair...but we showed we can be dangerous," Luisao said.

Luisao beat his markers to head home a free kick from Armando Petit when the game looked headed for a draw. Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard, who has a minor knee injury, started on the bench. He came on as a late sub.

"I preferred to lose Steve for 80 minutes than for one month," Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez said. "We tried playing second-half counter attacks but we couldn't score."

In Eindhoven, Netherlands, Lyon's Juninho scored in the 65th minute from a free kick. His winner curled toward the middle of the goal and PSV keeper Gomes misjudged the flight for it to bounce in off his thigh.

Lyon midfielder Sidney Govou was sent off in the 80th minute for two yellow cards.

Last season, PSV eliminated Lyon from the last year's quarterfinals on penalties after the teams were level 2-2 at the end of the two-game tie.

On Wednesday, Chelsea hosts Barcelona in another rematch from last season; Werder Bremen hosts Italian league leader Juventus; Scottish club Rangers play Villarreal in Glasgow; and Inter Milan travel to Ajax.

The second legs are on March 7-8.

First Published: Feb 22, 2006 13:08 IST