Malaga get off to winning start

Malaga began their first Champions League campaign in perfect fashion as a brace from Isco guided them to a 3-0 win over Zenit St Petersburg.

Last Updated: 18/09/12 at 22:06 Post Comment

Isco: Celebrates one of his goals

Isco: Celebrates one of his goals

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

The game was barely three minutes old at La Rosaleda on Tuesday night when the Spain Under-21 international bent a wonderful shot in off the inside of the post and the hosts were in dreamland when Javier Saviola slid home a second 10 minutes later.

Zenit then missed a host of opportunities to get back into the game, with Russia pair Roman Shirokov and Alexander Kerzhakov the main culprits, and their miserable evening was rounded off when Isco thumped in a third from outside the area with 14 minutes remaining.

Hulk was making his Champions League debut for the Russians after completing his £32m move from Porto two weeks ago, but it was Malaga's strikeforce that started on fire as they score twice within the opening 13 minutes.

Firstly Isco produced a dazzling piece of skill as he received Eliseu's pass on the left side of the area and cut inside before curling a beautiful effort in off the inside of the post.

Hulk nearly responded immediately with a thunderous effort of his own that cannoned back off the underside of the bar, but the hosts continued to overrun their opponents with their intelligent movement and they doubled their advantage when Francisco Portillo released Jesus Gamez and his cross was turned in by Saviola.

The Argentinian could even have extended Malaga's lead as he sent a snap shot just wide from another Gamez cross before Vyacheslav Malafeev made a brave stop to deny the former Barcelona striker.

However as the half progressed, the Russian champions grew into the game and should have reduced the arrears on a number of occasions before half-time.

Willy Caballero did well to divert the ball away from Victor Fayzulin as he burst into the area before the keeper produced two wonderful saves to firstly hold Shirokov's header before clawing away a dragged left-footed effort from Kerzhakov at his near post.

Both men came close again either side of half-time as another Shirokov header flashed inches past the post whilst Kerzhakov fired into the side netting when clean through on Caballero.

Malaga, though, remained a threat on the break and should have made sure of all three points when Eliseu was released through on goal, but he shot straight at Malafeev and Joaquin pulled the rebound wide.

Caballero was then called on to produce his heroics once more as he denied Kerzhakov a certain goal with a diving save at his feet.

But any tension amongst the home fans was extinguished when Isco produced another moment of staggering quality as he received Joaquin's pass 20 yards from goal and flashed a right-footed shot into Malafeev's top left-hand corner.

Football365 Facebook Fan Page

The Football365 fan page is a great place to meet like minded people, have football related discussions and make new friends.

More Match Results

Wednesday, 13 May 2015
19:45
R Madrid 1-1 Juventus Report
Tuesday, 12 May 2015
Bay Munich 3-2 Barcelona Report
Wednesday, 06 May 2015
Barcelona 3-0 Bay Munich Report
Tuesday, 05 May 2015
Juventus 2-1 R Madrid Report
Wednesday, 22 April 2015
Monaco 0-0 Juventus Report
R Madrid 1-0 A Madrid  
Tuesday, 21 April 2015
Barcelona 2-0 PSG  
Bay Munich 6-1 FC Porto Report
Wednesday, 15 April 2015
FC Porto 3-1 Bay Munich Report
PSG 1-3 Barcelona  

Footer 365

One-time FIFA presidential candidate Luis Figo scathing of Sepp Blatter

One-time FIFA presidential candidate Luis Figo was scathing in his criticism of Sepp Blatter after the Swiss was voted in for a fifth term.

Sepp Blatter will not last two years, says FA chairman Greg Dyke

FA chairman Greg Dyke is not surprised Sepp Blatter won a fifth term as FIFA president but he does not expect him to even last two years.

Gordon Taylor says Sepp Blatter's FIFA position is untenable

PFA chief executive Gordon Taylor does not think Sepp Blatter can see out his fifth term as FIFA president.

Mail Box

Players Must Stand Up For Qatar Boycott

Players, not bureaucrats, hold the key to boycotting Qatar. Also in the afternoon mailbox: Wenger is right to rotate, Zlatan can dribble, and it's Barca v Ajax in the budget final...

What Would You Do If You Were Blatter?

Step into Sepp's shoes, is the invitation from one mailboxer. Also: United already have their new number one, Rodgers deserves time, and the best Budget XI so far...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company