Owen finally opens account for Real

Real Madrid 1 - Dynamo Kiev 0
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The Independent Football

Two months after leaving Merseyside all the frustration of his barren start in Spain emerged from Michael Owen here last night as a jump in the air and a clenched fist signified his first goal for Real Madrid.

Two months after leaving Merseyside all the frustration of his barren start in Spain emerged from Michael Owen here last night as a jump in the air and a clenched fist signified his first goal for Real Madrid.

The England striker, who has been unable to cement a regular first-team position for the Bernabeu giants, scored after 35 minutes against Dynamo Kiev helping Real run out 1-0 winners in an edgy Champions' League Group B encounter.

This time the Real manager, Mariano Garcia Ramon, chose to employ Owen in an attacking formation with Ronaldo and Raul. And Ramon was not disappointed when, in the 35th minute, Owen slid in front of two defenders to turn a Ronaldo cross past the goalkeeper, Olexander Shovkovsky, from close range after the substitute Santiago Solari had broken quickly from inside his own half.

It was a sweet moment for Owen in front of the 45,000-strong crowd in the Bernabeu which rose as one to acknowledge the £8m striker opening his account on the continent.

Real, who were dealt a heavy 3-0 defeat in their opening game to Bayer Leverkusen but produced a memorable 4-2 comeback victory over Roma in their second, made a bright start as they laid siege to the Kiev goal in the opening minutes.

But although they dominated possession, they never looked really comfortable and it was only thanks to some poor finishing from the Dynamo forwards and some fine goalkeeping from Iker Casillas that they did not concede a goal before the break.

Ronaldo and Raul had good chances to extend the lead Owen had given Real early in the second half but both failed to beat Shovkovsky, while the Dynamo striker Kleber was denied by Casillas at the other end 15 minutes before time. Owen was at last the hero.

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