It’s been another busy and exciting weekend of football on the continent. Romelu Lukaku struck a new momentous milestone in Italy, RB Leipzig and Eintracht Frankfurt gained on Bayern and Real kept the heat on Atletico. Lionel Messi netted another brace while Cristiano Ronaldo failed to score at all and in France, Mauricio Pochettino’s PSG are plotting Lille’s downfall.
Here’s our round-up of the latest results from Europe’s top leagues...
Inter In The Groove As Milan and Juventus Stumble
Wow, what a weekend for Inter. After leaders Milan went down 2-0 at lowly Spezia, the Nerazzuri knew a victory over Lazio would launch them back to the top of the Serie A table and, boy, did Antonio Conte’s men respond? It was a stunning evening for striker Romelu Lukaku who opened the scoring from the penalty spot before hitting the 300th goal of his career for club and country to double the hosts advantage. Gonzalo Escalante halved the deficit for the visitors before Lukaku turned on the turbocharge and sprinted down the right from his own half to give Lautaro Martinez a tap-in.
Better still for Inter, Cristiano Ronaldo fired a blank for Juventus who lost 1-0 at Napoli, meaning they trail the summit by eight points in fourth place, though they do have a game in hand. Roma, who defeated Udinese 3-0 at Stadio Olimpico courtesy of a Jordan Veretout brace, are up to third.
Real And Barcelona Are Back In Business But Is It Too Late?
Real Madrid kept the pressure on La Liga leaders Atletico Madrid with a 2-0 victory over Valencia. Zinedine Zidane’s men got the job done early doors with first-half goals from squad veterans Karim Benzema and Toni Kroos. Madrid trail Diego Simeone’s table-toppers by five points having also played two matches more. Atletico, who won at Granada on Saturday thanks to strikes from Marcos Llorente and Angel Correa, go to Levante on Wednesday to tick off one of their games in hand.
Barcelona remain third after battering Alaves 5-1. Lionel Messi thumped home two stunners, Francisco Trincao got a brace of his own and Junior Firpo put the icing on the cake. Real Betis closed the gap on the Europa League places with an impressive 2-1 win at Villarreal.
RB Leipzig And Eintracht Frankfurt Win To Keep Title Challenge Alive
RB Leipzig and Eintracht Frankfurt both closed the gap on first-placed Bayern Munich in the Bundesliga, beating Augsburg and Koln respectively at home. But no, the Bavarians didn’t lose, (don’t be so preposterous), they merely didn’t play this weekend. Instead, they host Arminia Bielefeld who currently occupy the relegation play-off place this evening. Victory will see Robert Lewandowski and Co re-extend their lead at the top to seven points.
It was another disappointing weekend for Borussia Dortmund who were held to a 2-2 draw against Hoffenheim. After Jadon Sancho had given them the lead, they needed an 81st minute equaliser from Erling Haaland to snatch a point and are now 15 points off the pace set by Bayern. Elsewhere, fourth-placed Wolfsburg played out a goalless draw with Monchengladbach while Leverkusen shared four goals with Mainz.
PSG Are On The Hunt For Leaders Lille
Lille have been leading the way in Ligue 1 but will be quaking in their boots with PSG closing in. The club from the capital have won seven of the last eight Ligue 1 championships and were back on top this weekend, albeit only for a day, after beating Nice 2-1. Taking the lead through Julian Draxler, victory was later sealed courtesy of Moise Kean. The striker, on loan from Everton, cancelled out Ronny Lopes’ leveller with his 13th strike of the season.
Lille did return to the summit but it was rather fortuitous as they were held to a goalless draw at home to Brest and will know they must do better if they are to ward off Mauricio Pochettino’s men. Elsewhere, Monaco failed to capitalise on third-placed Lyon’s home defeat by Montpellier, only managing a 2-2 draw with Lorient at Stade Louis II.
Sporting The Winners in Portugal While Ajax Gain Power In Holland
In Portugal, it was another rough weekend for Porto who had to fight back from two goals down to draw at home with Boavista. They now trail leaders Sporting, who face Pacos Ferreira tonight, by seven points. Benfica, too, are ten points off the top, having tied 1-1 at Moreirense.
It was a good week for Ajax over in Holland, as they extended their lead at the top of the Eredivisie table to six points with a 2-0 win at Heracles while challengers PSV could only draw 2-2 at Den Haag. Feyenoord are twelve points behind their Amsterdam rival but did give supporters something to shout about, hammering Willem II 5-0 at De Kuip. AZ Alkmaar stayed third with a 3-1 triumph over Heerenveen.