LONDON (AP) — Richarlison marked his Champions League debut by scoring his first goals for Tottenham to earn a 2-0 win over 10-man Marseille in their opening group-stage match on Wednesday.
The Brazil forward was unmarked in the middle of the penalty area when he met a cross from the left by Ivan Perisic with a header that flew past goalkeeper Pau Lopez, putting Tottenham ahead in the 76th minute.
His second goal five minutes later was pretty much a replica, with Richarlison this time nodding in a deep cross from Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg.
Marseille was unable to eke out a draw at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium after having center back Chancel Mbemba sent off in the 47th for bringing down Son Heung-min as the last man.
Slovenian referee Slavko Vinčić dropped the red card on the ground as he was about to brandish it to Mbemba. Tottenham wing back Emerson Royal picked the card up to allow Vinčić to complete the job in an incident that proved a turning point in what was a lackluster stalemate at that point.
It was Marseille’s first loss of the season in all competitions and continued a dreadful run of results in the Champions League. France’s one and only European champion — in 1993 — lost five of its six group matches in 2020-21 and all six in its previous appearance in the competition, in 2013-14.
Tottenham remained unbeaten in all competitions and has a new attacking star in Richarlison, who has forced his way into the starting team in recent weeks following an offseason move from Everton.
Sporting beat Eintracht Frankfurt 3-0 in the other game in Group D.
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The Associated Press