Paris (AFP) Inter Milan were stunned at Sparta Prague, Schalke 04 put their Bundesliga woes to one side when cruising past Salzburg while Mario Balotelli got on the score sheet for Nice again in Europa League action.
AFP Sports picks out the best of the early games from matchday two on Thursday:
Schalke reborn in Europe
While Schalke 04 have suffered five consecutive Bundesliga losses under new coach Markus Weinzierl, the Blues skipped to a 3-1 win over Austrians Salzburg.
"We can compete for the title," were the words uttered by Schalke and USA midfielder Jermaine Jones back in the July heat of the Schalke training camp. Lofty words for a club that has not won a Bundesliga league title since 1958. But the atmosphere surrounding the club was one of optimism. Schalke came off a season where they defeated their arch rivals Borussia Dortmund twice, they managed to extend the contract of the second best German talent, Julian Draxler, something the hated rivals were not able to do with Mario GÃ¶tze (the best German talent in case you were wondering) and they had also signed another great talent in Leon Goretzka who chose Schalke over Dortmund.
ALEMANIA (Seleccionador: Joachim Löw) [Lista provisional de 30 jugadores, reducida a 27 con los descartes de Marcell Jansen, Leon Goretzka, Andre Hahn y Max Meyer, más la incorporación de Christoph Kramer] Porteros: Manuel Neuer (Bayern), Roman Weidenfeller (Dortmund) y Ron-Robert Zieler (Hannover).