Football: Real's Moscow mishap

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The Independent Online
THE EUROPEAN Cup holders, Real Madrid, slumped to a surprise 2- 1 defeat to Spartak Moscow in the Champions' League last night.

Yegor Titov scored the winner as Spartak recovered from a goal down to beat Real in Moscow to take over at the top of Group C with six points out of six.

On a wet pitch in the Russian capital, Spartak put the skids under Real with a spirited fightback. The holders appeared set for their second group victory when Raul headed them in front after 64 minutes, but Spartak's captain, Ilya Tsymbalar, sparked the home side's recovery with an equaliser seven minutes later, and Titov grabbed the winner with 12 minutes left.

Internazionale, Barcelona and Ajax all recorded their first victories in the competition, but the Italian champions, Juventus, were held to a second successive draw.

The Frenchman, Youri Djorkaeff, scored in the final minute to give Inter a much-needed 1-0 victory in Austria over Sturm Graz. Inter had lost their opening Group C match to Real Madrid.

Brazil's Sonny Anderson was Barcelona's two-goal hero against Brondby at Nou Camp as Louis van Gaal's side won 2-0 to go top of Group D. In Group A Ajax earned a 2-1 win over the Portuguese side, Porto, in Amsterdam thanks to Jari Litmanen's 86th-minute penalty.

In Norway, Juventus, held 2-2 at home by Galatasaray a fortnight ago, could only draw 1-1 with Rosenborg Trondheim. Filippo Inzaghi put Juventus in front in first half but Bent Skammelsrud levelled for the Norwegians with a penalty.

In other games Olympiakos Piraeus beat Croatia Zagreb 2-1 in Greece to top Group A on goal difference from Ajax. Galatasaray lead Group B after seeing off Athletic Bilbao by the same score. In Group E Dynamo Kiev drew 1-1 at home to Lens. In Group F Benfica beat PSV Eindhoven 2-1 in Lisbon and Kaiserslautern drew 0-0 with HJK Helsinki in Finland.

n The Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera reported on Tuesday that a positive drug test on a Serie A player had been covered up. A Udinese player reportedly tested positive after a game against Roma on 4 January, but a laboratory under the authority of the Italian Olympic Committee allegedly altered the test results. The Italian football federation has rejected the paper's claims and is threatening legal action against the journalist and the newspaper.

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