Manchester City and Manchester United are making a break for it in England, while Dortmund made their move in Germany after toppling Bayern Munich.
English Premier League
Weekend Results, Saturday; Norwich 1 Arsenal 2, Everton 2 Wolverhampton 1, Manchester City 3 Newcastle 1, Stoke City 2 QPR 3, Sunderland 0 Fulham 0, West Bromwich 2 Bolton 1, Wigan 3 Blackburn 3, Swansea 0 Manchester United 1, Sunday; Chelsea 1 Liverpool 2
The top two moved further away from the pack over the weekend, with Manchester City easing past third-placed Newcastle 3-1, with Mario Balotelli shining while Manchester United edged past Swansea 1-0. Chelsea were the big story after their 2-1 loss to Liverpool left them some 12 points off the pace. Liverpool and Arsenal are now level on points with the Blues.
Bottom pair Blackburn and Wigan played out an unbelievable 3-3 draw which doesn’t do much for either side. Meanwhile, Bolton’s woes continued after a 2-1 loss at West Bromwich. Everton had a big win, 2-1 over Wolverhampton, which sees them move up to 12th.
Topscorers, Robin van Persie (Arsenal) 13 goals, Edin Dzeko (Manchester City) 10 goals, Sergio Aguero (Manchester City) 10 goals, Wayne Rooney (Manchester United) 9 goals
Weekend Results, Friday; Kaiserslautern 0 Bayer Leverkusen 2, Saturday; Schalke 04 4 FC Nurnberg 0, SC Freiburg 2 Hertha BSC 2, FC Koln v FSV Mainz (postponed), Wolfsburg 4 Hannover 1, Moenchengladbach 5 Werder Bremen 0, Bayern Munich 0 Borussia Dortmund 1, Sunday; VfB Stuttgart 2 FC Augsburg 1, Hamburg SV 2 Hoffenheim 0
Borussia Dortmund moved to within two points of leaders Bayern Munich after their 1-0 win at the Allianz Arena on Saturday, thanks to Mario Gotze’s winner. Moenchengladbach made a big statement too, smashing Werder Bremen 5-0, with Marco Reus netting a treble. Klaas-Jan Huntelaar hit a double as Schalke beat Nurnberg 4-0 to move up to fourth.
Hamburg SV were the big movers down the bottom, with new boss Thorsten Fink enjoying his first league win in charge with a 2-0 triumph over Hoffenheim. Nurnberg’s woeful run of defeats continued at Schalke, along with newly-promoted Augsburg who lost 2-1 at Stuttgart and are beginning to slip behind.
Topscorers, Mario Gomez (Bayern Munich) 13 goals, Klaas-Jan Huntelaar (Schalke 04) 12 goals, Claudio Pizarro (Werder Bremen) 11 goals, Marco Reus (Moenchengladbach) 10 goals
Spanish La Liga
Weekend Results, Saturday; Villarreal 1 Real Betis 0, FC Barcelona 4 Real Zaragoza 0, Valencia 2 Real Madrid 3, Sunday; Real Sociedad 0 Espanyol 0, Sporting Gijon 2 Getafe 1, Osasuna 0 Rayo Vallecano 0, Sevilla 1 Athletic Bilbao 2, Atletico Madrid 3 Levante 2, Granada v Real Mallorca (suspended)
The top two in Spain keep on winning, although Real Madrid didn’t do it easy, recording a 3-2 win over Valencia at the Mestalla, with Cristiano Ronaldo scoring the decisive goal. Elsewhere, Barcelona cruised past Zaragoza 4-0, but there were defeats for three of the top five, with Levante slipping to their third consecutive defeat, 3-2 at Atletico, while Sevilla lost 2-1 at home to Bilbao.
There’s a real logjam down the bottom of the Spanish table, with Sporting Gijon getting the jump on a host of clubs after their 2-1 win over Getafe. Zaragoza have conceded 26 goals this campaign and are struggling, having failed to win in their past five games. Newly-promoted Granada had their early relegation battle with Mallorca suspended after the linesman was injured by an umbrella thrown on the pitch. Granada were leading 2-1 at the time.
Topscorers, Lionel Messi (FC Barcelona) 15 goals, Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid) 14 goals, Gonzalo Higuain (Real Madrid) 10 goals, Roberto Soldado (Valencia) 8 goals
Italian Serie A
Weekend Results, Saturday; Inter Milan 2 Cagliari 1, Fiorentina 0 AC Milan 0, Napoli 0 Lazio 0, Sunday; Bologna 0 Cesena 1, Catania 1 Chievo Verona 2, Genoa 1 Novara 0, Juventus 3 Palermo 0, Parma 2 Udinese 0, Siena 2 Atalanta 2, AS Roma 2 Lecce 1
Antonio Conte’s Juventus moved into top spot after a 3-0 win over Palermo, while previous leaders Udinese slipped down to fourth after their surprise 2-0 defeat at Parma. Lazio drew 0-0 at Napoli, while AC Milan also missed the chance to go top after a goalless draw at Fiorentina. AS Roma’s 2-1 win over Lecce has them up to fifth.
Claudio Ranieri’s Inter Milan recorded a much-needed 2-1 triumph over Cagliari on Saturday, to move away from the drop and towards the top half, while Novara’s woes continued after a 1-0 loss at Genoa. Bottom club Cesena celebrated their first victory of the campaign, 1-0 at Bologna thanks to Marco Parolo’s 84th-minute winner.
Topscorers, German Denis (Atalanta) 9 goals, Antonio Di Natale (Udinese) 8 goals, Sebastian Giovinco (Parma) 7 goals, Miroslav Klose (Lazio) 6 goals