Welcome to the new Independent website. We hope you enjoy it and we value your feedback. Please contact us here.


Champions League round-up: Villa saves Barça from Russian repeat

Barcelona needed a debatable penalty to salvage a 1-1 draw away to Rubin Kazan yesterday as the Russian team again caused problems for Pep Guardiola's side.

Rubin won at the Nou Camp in last season's Champions League and looked to be on their way to another memorable victory when Cristian Noboa put them ahead from the penalty spot after half an hour. However, the visitors equalised through a David Villa spot-kick in the 60th minute after Andres Iniesta went down rather easily in the penalty area when challenged by Lasha Salukvadze. The fit-again Lionel Messi came on as a second-half substitute for Barça but it was Rubin who nearly snatched a winner when Obafemi Martins' late header hit a post.

In the other game in Group D, Copenhagen made it two wins out of two when they eased past Panathinaikos 2-0 in Athens. In Group B, Brazilian midfielder Michel Bastos scored twice as Lyons shook off their poor domestic form to win 2-1 at Hapoel Tel Aviv, while Schalke beat Benfica 2-0 through goals from Jefferson Farfan and Klaas-Jan Huntelaar.