and many observers expected a real examination for the Reds on the back of the draw in Cardiff and Leverkusen's outstanding home form.
Opposition Leverkusen appeared to miss Sidney Sam, who was ruled out through injury, and star striker Kiessling was often too deep to make a telling impact. The Germans are above Borussia Dortmund and only behind Bayern Munich in the Bundesliga on merit and had won their last eight home group games in the Champions League. However, they were very much second-best on the night.
Move of the match The first goal actually came from a corner for the hosts. Kagawa won possession and found Giggs, who played the ball out wide to Rooney. A dangerous cross allowed Valencia to arrive late at the far post and finish off a clinical counter-attack.
In the stands Sir Alex Ferguson was among the crowd and will have enjoyed the proceedings just as much as the noisy travelling supporters who were vocal from the outset. Numerous chants rang out but there was some special serenading reserved for Giggs, who turns 40 on Friday. Those in attendance witnessed a special, record-breaking performance.