Ukrainian champions Dynamo Kiev battled back from a goal down to get off to a winning start in the new UEFA Champions League campaign beating 3-1 Russian champions Kazan on Wednesday.
Dynamo's goals came from Nigerian midfielder Ayila Yussuf, Brazilian defender Gerson Magrao and Ukrainian international halfback Oleg Gusev, while Argentinian forward Alejandro Dominguez was on target for Kazan.
Dynamo took top spot in Group F after Italian league winners Inter Milan and Spanish European champions Barcelona ended with a goalless draw. Kazan, who were playing their first ever UEFA Champions League match, started lively and created a set of early chances but to no immediate avail.
Dynamo, much more experienced fighters in the European arena, soon took the initiative back and began testing the visitors' defence but their efforts also remained fruitless. In the 25th minute Dominguez lifted Kazan 1-0 up with a precise 23 metre free-kick into the top left-hand corner after Dynamo's Serbian midfielder Milos Ninkovic fouled skipper Sergei Semak in front of goal.
Dynamo's Ninkovic had a chance to level five minutes later but his shot from the edge of the box past Kazan goalie Sergei Ryzhikov edged wide. After the interval the hosts, spurred on by their supporters, added power to the attacks pinning Kazan back and in the 71st minute Yussuf levelled with a six-yard header from Magrao well-placed corner.
Dynamo upped the tempo and eight minutes later Magrao put Dynamo in front 2-1 with a powerful shot from close range. Gusev rounded off the scoring in the 85th minute firing in a rebound from close range.