Ar­se­nal win in Eng­land, Barcelona stum­ble

The China Post - - SPORTS -

Ar­se­nal kept alive its ti­tle chance in the Pre­mier League but still needs Chelsea to stum­ble.

Barcelona gave Real Madrid new hope in the Span­ish league ti­tle race by stum­bling to a draw de­spite spec­tac­u­lar goals from Lionel Messi and Ney­mar.

In Ger­many, Bay­ern Mu­nich kept up its in­evitable charge to­ward the Bun­desliga ti­tle while Ju­ven­tus’ march to the Serie A crown hit an un­ex­pected bump.

Paris Saint-Ger­main al­ready se­cured its first ti­tle of the sea­son by win­ning the French League Cup.

Here is a look at the main ac­tion around Europe on Satur­day:

Eng­land

Ar­se­nal earned its eighth straight Pre­mier League victory as Aaron Ram­sey scored in a 1-0 win at Burn­ley, putting the Gun­ners four points be­hind Chelsea — although Jose Mour­inho’s side still has two games in hand.

Burn­ley goal­keeper Tom Heaton con­ceded his first goal at home since Feb. 28 in the 12th minute af­ter Ram­sey sent a pow­er­ful strike into the top cor­ner.

Chelsea plays Queens Park Rangers on Sun­day, while Manch­ester ri­vals United and City meet in a clash be­tween third and fourth.

The fight against rel­e­ga­tion tight­ened fur­ther with bot­tom­place Le­ices­ter win­ning 3-2 at West Bromwich Al­bion to go within a point of Burn­ley and QPR.

Sun­der­land was thrashed 4-1 at home by Crys­tal Palace, and Hull went down 2-0 at Southamp­ton. Tot­ten­ham slid to sev­enth with a 1-0 loss to As­ton Villa. Swansea drew 1-1 with Ever­ton, while West Ham con­ceded in stop­page time to draw 1-1 with Stoke.

France

Zla­tan Ibrahi­movic and sub­sti­tute Edin­son Ca­vani both scored twice as Paris Saint-Ger­main re­tained the League Cup with a 4-0 win over 10-man Bas­tia.

Ibrahi­movic opened the scor­ing from the penalty spot af­ter Se­bastien Squil­laci was sent off in the 20th. He then dou­bled the lead just be­fore half­time.

Ca­vani added more gloss to the win in the closing stages of the match with a header and a fin­ish af­ter a coun­ter­at­tack.

PSG is chas­ing an un­prece­dented quadru­ple, as Lau­rent Blanc’s side also made it to the French Cup fi­nal and leads the French league stand­ings. It plays Barcelona in the Cham­pi­ons League quar­ter­fi­nals.

Spain

Barcelona squan­dered a twogoal lead to draw 2-2 draw at Sevilla, let­ting Real Madrid pull within two points of the Span­ish league leader af­ter eas­ing past Eibar 3-0 with Cris­tiano Ron­aldo scor­ing his com­pe­ti­tion-high 38th goal of the sea­son.

Barcelona couldn’t have asked for a bet­ter start when Messi curled in a shot for the 14thminute opener be­fore Ney­mar left Sevilla goal­keeper Ser­gio Rico flat- footed with a su­perb free kick in the 31st. But Ever Banega pulled one back in the 38th, and sub­sti­tute Kevin Gameiro capped a coun­ter­at­tack with six min­utes to play to keep Sevilla un­de­feated at home in 32 straight games.

In Madrid, Ron­aldo’s free kick was fol­lowed by strikes from Javier Her­nan­dez and Jese Ro­driguez. But even Ron­aldo was up­staged by Celta Vigo’s 19-yearold Santi Mina, who found the net four times in a 6-1 de­mo­li­tion of Rayo Val­le­cano.

Third-place Atletico Madrid also dropped two points at Malaga in a 2-2 draw, three days be­fore the de­fend­ing league cham­pi­ons host Madrid in the Cham­pi­ons League quar­ter­fi­nals.

Alme­ria ended an eight-game win­less run by beat­ing fel­low strug­gler Granada 3-0.

Italy

Parma pulled off the big­gest sur­prise of the sea­son as the cri­sis-hit club beat run­away leader Ju­ven­tus 1-0, in­flict­ing what was only the sec­ond de­feat of the cam­paign for Mas­si­m­il­iano Al­le­gri’s side.

Jose Mauri scored the only goal of the game on the hour mark, while a string of fine saves from Parma goal­keeper An­to­nio Mirante also helped Roberto Don­adoni’s side to a mem­o­rable win.

Parma was de­clared bank­rupt last month and its play­ers have not been paid all sea­son. It is still in last place, 10 points from safety, with nine matches re­main­ing.

Ju­ven­tus, which hosts Monaco in the Cham­pi­ons League on Tues­day, has a 14-point lead over Roma, which vis­its Torino on Sun­day.

In­ter Mi­lan won 3-0 at Hel­las Verona to move pro­vi­sion­ally level with city ri­val AC Mi­lan, while Genoa beat rel­e­ga­tion-threat­ened Cagliari 2-0.

Ger­many

Robert Le­wandowski scored twice as Bay­ern Mu­nich moved a step closer to the Bun­desliga ti­tle with a 3-0 win against Ein­tra­cht Frank­furt, while his for­mer club Borus­sia Dort­mund slumped to a 3-1 de­feat at Borus­sia Moenchenglad­bach.

Poor de­fend­ing cost Dort­mund dearly in Moenchenglad­bach, where Os­car Wendt scored in the first minute be­fore Raf­fael and Havard Nordtveit made it 3-0. Ilkay Gun­do­gan scored Dort­mund’s con­so­la­tion in the 77th.

Bayer Lev­erkusen stayed two points be­hind `Glad­bach with a 3-2 win at Mainz, Pader­born boosted its chances of avoid­ing rel­e­ga­tion with a 2-1 win at home over Augs­burg, and Schalke was booed by its own fans af­ter be­ing held to a 0-0 draw by rel­e­ga­tion-threat­ened Freiburg.

Ham­burger SV is closer to de­mo­tion af­ter los­ing 2-0 to sec­ond place Wolfs­burg.

AP

Real Madrid’s Cris­tiano Ron­aldo ges­tures af­ter miss­ing a chance dur­ing a Span­ish La Liga soc­cer match be­tween Real Madrid and Eibar at the San­ti­ago Bern­abeu sta­dium in Madrid, Spain on Satur­day, April 11.

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