PFC CSKA Moskva 1-1 AS Roma
Francesco Totti's 43rd-minute free-kick looked to have earned a crucial Group E win only for Vasili Berezutski to level with the last touch of the game.
Article top media content
• Vasili Berezutski rescues point for CSKA with last touch of game (90+3)
• CSKA defender's attempted cross evades everybody to equalise
• Francesco Totti's first-half free-kick seemed enough for Roma (43)
• Teams still level on points in Group E with five each
• Next games: Bayern v CSKA, Roma v Manchester City (10 December)
Vasili Berezutski scored a last-second equaliser to keep alive PFC CSKA Moskva's UEFA Champions League hopes just as AS Roma looked set to take a giant stride towards the round of 16.
The Italian side had been poised for three points on a freezing Moscow night thanks to a thunderous free-kick from Francesco Totti close to half-time, the 38-year-old Roma captain extending his own record for the competition's oldest scorer. However, three minutes into added time Berezutski's attempted cross evaded everybody to nestle into the Roma net and ensure Group E will go to the wire.
CSKA started brightly with Georgi Schennikov having the first opportunity of the match, shooting from an acute angle with Seydou Doumbia unmarked in the middle. Roma then gained the upper hand and largely controlled possession, but aside from a half-chance for Alessandro Florenzi, Igor Akinfeev was largely untroubled in the home goal.
Indeed, Leonid Slutski's team should have taken the lead on 39 minutes as Bebras Natcho slid Doumbia through on goal, yet Morgan De Sanctis produced a fine block to keep the scores level. As one Roma veteran excelled at one end of the pitch, another broke the deadlock four minutes later, Totti slamming a thunderbolt of a set piece past Akinfeev from just outside the penalty area.
Striving to build on that, Roma might have doubled their advantage on the hour when Radja Nainggolan sliced through the Army Men's defence. With only Akinfeev to beat, he managed to drag his right-footed shot wide of the left-hand post – CSKA were still in the contest.
Ahmed Musa and Alan Dzagoev both had opportunities to equalise with Roma sitting back, though the Giallorossi remained a threat to the Russian champions' goal. Adem Ljajić could have put the game beyond doubt with ten minutes to go, but Akinfeev saved well with his outstretched leg.
That stop appeared as if it would count for little as the match moved into its final seconds with Rudi Garcia's side still in front, yet then everything changed at the last. Berezutski picked up the ball on the left and delivered it into the box and, though neither Dzagoev nor Doumbia could make contact, De Sanctis was unable to keep it out as CSKA grasped a lifeline.