By James Agberebi:
Super Eagles forward Victor Moses was benched for Chelsea who announced their return to the UEFA Champions League with an emphatic 6-0 win against Group C opponents Azerbaijan side Qarabag FK at Stamford Bridge on matchday one on Tuesday.
Pedro Rodriguez gave Chelsea the perfect start when he opened scoring in the fifth minute.
New signing Davide Zappacosta marked his full home debut with a 30th minute goal to make it 2-0 to Chelsea.
In the 55th minute, Cesar Azpilicueta got on the score sheet to make it 3-0 to the EPL champions.
Summer signing Tiemoue Bakayoko also got on the score sheet to make it 4-0 on 71 minutes before Michy Batshuayi rounded up the scoring with a brace in the 76th and 82nd minutes.
In Group C’s other game, last two season’s Champions League beaten finalist Atletico Madrid held AS Roma to a 0-0 draw at the Stadio Olimpico.
In the biggest game of the night in Group D, Barcelona avenged their quarter-final ouster in the hands of Juventus last season as they triumphed the Italian club 3-0 at the Nou Camp.
A brace from Lionel Messi and a solitary strike from Ivan Rakitic earned Barcelona the perfect start to this season’s competition.
After a tight opening half, Barcelona eventually broke the deadlock through Messi on the stroke of half-time. It was Messi’s first ever goal against Gianluigi Buffon.
Rakitic made it 2-0 before Messi added a third goal in the 69th minute.
Group D’s other game saw Portuguese club Sporting Lisbon defeat Olympiacos 3-1 in Greece.
Former Super Eagles striker Emmanuel Emenike was brought on in the 62nd minute.
Goals from Ivory Coast striker Seydou Doumbia (2nd minute), Gelson Martins (13th minute) and Bruno Fernandes (43rd minute) gave Sporting Lisbon a commanding 3-0 lead before Felipe Pardo pulled one back for Olympiacos.
At the Alianz Arena in Group B, Super Eagles striker Henry Onyekuru made his Champions League debut coming on in the 59th minute but could not help 10-man Anderlecht from losing 3-0 to Bayern Munich.
Robert Lewandowski put Bayern 1-0 up in the 12th minute before Thiago Alcantara added the second goal on 65 minute.
In the 90th minute Joshua Kimmich got in the act to end the game 3-0 in favour of Bayern.
In Scotland, in another Group B clash, Paris Saint-Germain put up a class act as they smashed Celtic 5-0.
Neymar (19th minute), Kylian Mbappe (34th minute), a brace from Edinson Cavani (40th minute penalty, 85th minute) and an own goal by Mikael Lustig in 83 minute, gave PSG the perfect start.
Mbappe’s goal against Celtic makes him the youngest player to score for more than one club in the Champions League.
Another team making a return to the Champions League Manchester United outclassed Swiss club Basel 3-0 at Old Trafford in Group A.
Maroune Fellaini, Romelu Lukaku, Marcos Rashford all scored in the 35th, 53rd and 84th minutes respectively to seal the win.
And in another Group A clash, Aaron Samuel was in from the start before he was replaced as CSKA Moscow came from a goal down to beat Benfica 2-1 in Portugal.
Haris Seferivic gave Benfica the lead on 50 minutes before Vitinho and Timur Zhamaletdinov scored for CSKA on 63rd and 71 minutes.
UCL matchday 1 results:
Chelsea 6-0 Qarabag FK
Roma 0-0 Atletico Madrid
Barcelona 3-0 Juventus
Olympiacos 2-3 Sporting Lisbon
Bayern Munich 3-0 Anderlecht
Celtic 0-4 PSG
Benfica 1-2 CSKA
Man United 3-0 Basel