Weekend Developments From Europe's Top Leagues
It was another good weekend for the leaders in England, Italy and Spain but German leaders Dortmund continue to falter while there’s an interesting two-horse race emerging in Turkey.>
English Premier League
Weekend Results Saturday; Wolverhampton 0 Everton, Blackburn 1 Birmingham 1, Bolton 3 West Ham 0, Chelsea 1 Wigan 0, Manchester United 2 Fulham 0, Sunderland 2 West Bromwich 3, Tottenham 3 Stoke City 2. Sunday; Blackpool 1 Arsenal 3, Aston Villa 1 Newcastle 0. Monday; Liverpool v Manchester City
Leaders Manchester United continued on their way to the title after a comfortable 2-0 win over Fulham with Dimitar Berbatov and Antonio Valencia getting the goals, both in the first-half. Arsenal kept up the pressure with a 3-1 win at Blackpool. Manchester City can move back into third when they play Liverpool on Monday.
The bottom four all lost in the Premiership this weekend, as Aston Villa’s 1-0 win over Newcastle moved them away from danger up to 14th on 37 points. Wolverhampton’s 3-0 home loss was arguably the most alarming for any of the strugglers, while West Ham’s recent resurgence was thwarted by a 3-0 thumping from Bolton.
Topscorers Dimitar Berbatov (Manchester United) 21 goals, Carlos Tevez (Manchester City) 19 goals, Darren Bent (Aston Villa/Sunderland) 13 goals, Kevin Nolan (Newcastle) 12 goals, Robin van Persie (Arsenal) 12 goals
Spanish La Liga
> Weekend Results Saturday; Athletic Bilbao 0 Real Madrid 3, Barcelona 3 Almeria 1, Mallorca 2 Sevilla 2. Sunday; Gijon 1 Osasuna 0, Hercules 0 Espanyol 0, Racing Santander 1 Levante 1, Malaga 0 Deportivo Coruna 0, Atletico Madrid 3 Real Sociedad 0, Valencia 5 Villarreal 0. Monday; Zaragoza v Getafe
Barcelona retain their eight-point buffer at the top after a come-from-behind 3-1 win over Almeria. Lionel Messi was the star with the equalising penalty, then the assist for the goal which put them ahead before rounding it out with a cool finish for the third.
None of the bottom eight clubs in La Liga won this weekend, meaning Gijon’s 1-0 win over Osasuna was the big result, as they made it three wins in a row to move up to 11th. Fourteenth-placed Real Sociedad lost for the fifth game in a row, 3-0 at Atletico Madrid, while strugglers Malaga and Deportivo played out a goalless draw.
Topscorers Lionel Messi (Barcelona) 29 goals, Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid) 28 goals, David Villa (Barcelona) 17 goals, Giuseppe Rossi (Villarreal) 15 goals, Joseba Llorente (Athletic Bilbao) 15 goals
Italian Serie A
> Weekend Results Saturday; Internazionale 2 Chievo Verona 0, Udinese 1 AS Roma 2. Sunday; Juventus 3 Genoa 2, Cagliari 1 Brescia 1, Bari 1 Catania 1, Palermo 2 Cesena 2, Sampdoria 1 Lecce 2, Bologna 0 Napoli 2, Lazio 2 Parma 0, Fiorentina 1 AC Milan 2
AC Milan remain the team to catch in Italy after an impressive 2-1 win at Fiorentina, where they produced some fine attacking football with Clarence Seedorf and the in-form Alexandre Pato getting the goals. Napoli won 2-0 at midtable Bologna with Edinson Cavani to keep up the pressure.
Sampdoria’s Serie A status remains precarious after a 2-1 home loss to Lecce who move up to 15th. Parma’s poor form continued with their 2-0 loss at Lazio, while all bottom three sides drew this weekend with Cesena’s incredible fightback, with two goals in stoppage-time, earning them a 2-2 draw at Palermo despite being down to 10 men.
Topscorers Antonio Di Natale (Udinese) 26 goals, Edinson Cavani (Napoli) 25 goals, Marco Di Vaio (Bologna) 19 goals, Samuel Eto’o (Internazionale) 19 goals, Alessandro Matri (Juventus/Cagliari) 18 goals
> Friday; Eintracht Frankfurt 1 Werder Bremen 1. Saturday; FC Nurnberg 1 Bayern Munich 1, Hamburg SV 1 Borussia Dortmund 1, Schalke 04 1 VfL Wolfsburg 0, Hannover 96 2 FSV Mainz 0, SC Freiburg 3 Hoffenheim 2, VfB Stuttgart 2 Kaiserslautern 4. Sunday; Moenchengladbach 5 FC Koln 1, Bayer Leverkusen 2 St Pauli 1
Jakub Blaszczykowski scored in stoppage-time to rescue a point for leaders Dortmund in their 1-1 draw with Hamburg SV, as they hang onto a five-point advantage at the top. They’ve now only won one of their past four matches. Second-placed Leverkusen made it five consecutive wins with a 2-1 win over struggling St Pauli.
Bottom-club Moenchengladbach breathed life into their survival bid with an unbelievable 5-1 rout of FC Koln, with Marco Reus scoring a double. Elsewhere, Kaiserslautern won a crucial relegation battle over VfB Stuttgart 4-2 with Srdjan Lakic grabbing a brace.
Topscorers Papiss Demba Cisse (SC Freiburg) 20 goals, Mario Gomez (Bayern Munich) 19 goals, Theofanis Gekas (Eintracht Frankfurt) 16 goals, Srdjan Lakic (Kaiserslautern) 13 goals, Lucas Barrios (Borussia Dortmund) 13 goals, Milovoje Novakovic (FC Koln) 13 goals, Didier Ya Konan (Hannover 96) 13 goals
Random League: Turkish Super Lig
> |Pos|Team|Pts| |—|—-|—| |1|Trabzonspor|66| |2|Fenerbahce|64| |3|Bursaspor|52| |4|Gaziantepspor|49| |5|Kayserispor|43|
It’s become a two-horse race in Turkey, with Trabzonspor and Fenerbahce battling it out for honours with six games to play. Trabzonspor claimed a 1-0 win at fallen giants Galatasaray on the weekend, while Fenerbahce came from behind to win 3-1 at Eskisehirspor.
Elsewhere, champions Bursaspor are completely out of form after losing 3-2 to Antalyaspor meaning they’ve collected four points in their past five matches.
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