Deflected goals help Milan beat Zenit

World Leagues

St petersburg - AC Milan took advantage of two deflected goals to beat Zenit St Petersburg 3-2 in an entertaining Champions League Group C match on Wednesday.

The Russians champions fought back from two down to level before Milan scored the winner with 14 minutes remaining when a low Riccardo Montolivo shot hit Zenit defender Tomas Hubocan and slid into the near corner.

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AC Milan players celebrate victory against Zenit St. Petersburg after their Champion's league Group C soccer match in St. Petersburg's Petrovsky Stadium October 3, 2012. REUTERS/Alexander Demianchuk

The Italians scored twice in the first quarter of an hour, with the home side in disarray. Urby Emanuelson put the visitors ahead with a 20-metre free kick that took a deflection, wrong-footing Zenit keeper Vyacheslav Malafeyev in the 13th minute.

Stephan El Shaarawy, who turns 20 this month, doubled the lead three minutes later after a mazy solo run through the Zenit defence, becoming the youngest player to score for Milan in Europe's elite club competition.

Brazil striker Hulk, who joined Zenit from Porto for a club record 60 million euros ($77.41 million) before last month's transfer deadline, pulled one back for the home side just before the break before setting up Roman Shirokov's equaliser four minutes into the second half. - Reuters

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