Manchester United opened its Premier League title defense with a 2-1 victory over West Bromwich Albion on Sunday, and Andre Villas-Boas' first game in charge of Chelsea ended in a scoreless draw at Stoke.

United, beginning its bid for a 20th English title, won when Ashley Young's cross was deflected into the net by West Brom defender Steven Reid in the 81st minute. Wayne Rooney put United ahead 1-0 in the 13th minute, and West Brom evened the score in the 37th when Shane Long's angled shot went under David de Gea, renewing questions about the new 20-year-old Spanish goalkeeper.

"It was just a bit of concentration there, but welcome to English football," United manager Alex Ferguson said.

Star United defender Rio Ferdinand hurt his hamstring and will be out six weeks.

Chelsea striker Fernando Torres caused Stoke problems but could not score, leaving the Spaniard with just one goal since his signing in January. In the second half, Stoke goalkeeper Asmir Begovic tipped over the bar a dipping volley from John Obi Mikel and a curling shot from Nicolas Anelka.

Chelsea's stalemate followed draws for Arsenal and Liverpool on Saturday. Big-spending Manchester City hosts Swansea on Monday.


MADRID (AP) — Xabi Alonso's second-half goal gave Real Madrid a 2-2 draw against Barcelona in a first-leg Spanish Supercup match the host largely dominated.

Alonso fired a low shot beyond goalkeeper Victor Valdes in the 54th minute to equalize after Barcelona stunned Madrid by taking a 2-1 halftime lead.

Madrid went ahead in the 13th through Mesut Oezil at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium and dictated play for much of the half as Barcelona's passing game lacked its usual sharpness. But the individual quality of its players made up for it, as David Villa and Lionel Messi created goals out of seemingly nothing to give the Spanish champions two valuable away goals.

Barcelona may field Cesc Fabregas in Wednesday's return leg at the Camp Nou after announcing during the game it had reached a deal for the Arsenal midfielder.


PARIS (AP) — Marseille squandered a two-goal lead in tying Auxerre 2-2 in the French league.

Loic Remy opened the scoring for Marseille after two minutes by heading in a free kick from Mathieu Valbuena. Andre Ayew headed home a corner kick to make it 2-0 before halftime.

Alain Traore scored for Auxerre after the break and Roy Contout nodded in a corner kick by Dariusz Dudka to even it in the 81st minute.

In Evian, Tunisia's Saber Khelifa scored from a sharp angle in the 51st minute to give the hosts a 1-0 victory over Nice. Toulouse has won both its games and is even on points with Caen and Saint-Etienne.


BERLIN (AP) — Michal Kadlec scored a late goal for Bayer Leverkusen to beat Werder Bremen 1-0 at home, giving the Bundesliga runner-up its first win of the season.

Kadlec scored on the second attempt following Gonzalo Castro's corner kick in the 85th minute. The Czech defender's initial header was blocked by teammate Eren Derdiyok's back before Simon Rolfes lobbed the ball back in for Kadlec to score.

Kaiserslautern's Itay Shechter scored late in the game for a 1-1 draw, denying Augsburg its first win ever in the Bundesliga.


AMSTERDAM (AP) — Ajax maintained its strong start with a 5-1 romp over SC Heerenveen in which five players scored for the Dutch league champions.

Kolbeinn Sigthorsson scored first for Ajax, his first for the club. After Heerenveen's Bas Dost tied it, Toby Alderweireld put Ajax ahead for good with a blistering 25-yard shot.

After two games, Ajax, FC Twente and Feyenoord all have six points. Ajax leads the standings with a 9-2 goal difference.

Heracles Almelo beat NAC Breda 2-1, and Utrecht drew 2-2 with De Graafschap.