March 15, 2011
Around the first four of the big four V
Real Madrid shortens distance with Barcelona to five points, Milan doesn’t take advantage of Inter’s draw, the Premier League took a bye this weekend due to The FA Cup, and Borussia Dortmund suffers setback on the road.
By Andrew Hill
Setback for Barcelona
When Real Madrid received Hercules on Saturday for Round 28 in La Liga they were seven points away from the leaders Barcelona. But thanks to two goals from Benzema –minute 34 and 56- they were able to shorten that difference into four points.
Now the difference with Real Madrid is of five points.
With the pressure of their closest contender’s victory Barcelona travelled to Sevilla on Sunday focused in recuperating their seven-point lead. At minute 30 Bojan put things on the right track with his goal, but at the 49th minute Navas scored the equalizer to upset Barcelona, as they left two valuable points escape. With this draw Barcelona reached 75 points, and now the difference with Real Madrid is of five points.
Third place Valencia suffered a resounding 4-0 defeat at Zaragoza this weekend, with goals from Jarosik and Herrera in the first half, and Gabi twice in the second one. Luckily for them No.4 Villareal was upset at home in crunch time by Castro, who got the equalizer for Sporting, team that was down in the score since minute 29, when Rossi gave the Yellow Submarine the lead.
With these results Valencia is still third with 54 points and Villareal is fourth with 51.
Milan misses chance to extend lead
Udinese snatched No.4 from Lazio.
The Serie A leader Milan missed a good opportunity on Sunday to extend their lead in the championship, since No. 2 Inter had tied to one in their visit to Brescia on Friday for match day 29. A draw to one was all that Milan was able achieve at home against Bari, after being down in the score since minute 39, when Rudolf gave the visitors the lead, until Cassano evened the score at minute 82.
Going back to Inter’s draw, Eto’o scored the defending champions’ goal in the first half, but with five minutes to go in the game Caracciolo tied the score for the home team.
These results leave Milan with 62 points and Inter with 57.
No. 3 Napoli didn’t let go of the great opportunities that arose from this round as they were able to shorten distances with the two teams on top of the standings. They got a 3-1 victory from their visit to Parma after overcoming a first half goal from Palladino, with three in the second half from Hamsik, Lavezzi, and Maggio to reach 56 points.
The other team that took advantage of this situation was Udinese that with a 0-4 win on the road against Cagliari snatched the fourth place from Lazio, team that lost 2-0 in their visit to Roma. Benatia, Sanchez and Di Natale in two occasions scored the goals for Udinese that now has 53 points, two more than Lazio.
No Premier League action due to the FA Cup
The oldest association football competition in the world.
There were no Premier League games this week in England because of the FA Cup, which is the oldest association football competition in the world. Despite this fans got the best from the FA Cup as it matched up the Premier League leaders Manchester United against No.2 Arsenal this weekend for the sixth round. The game was won 2-0 by the Red Devils thanks to goals from Da Silva and Rooney.
1899 Hoffenheim stops Borussia Dortmund
The Bundesliga leader’s 3-win streak came to an end on round 26, as they were defeated 1-0 in their visit to 1899 Hoffenheim. One goal from Ibisevic at minute 63 was sufficient to defeat Borussia Dortmund, that despite the setback continues as the solo leader of the competition with 61 points, nine more than their closest contender: Bayern Leverkusen.
Ibisevic's goal upsets the leader.
Speaking about No. 2 Bayern Leverkusen, they ran with better luck on the road than Borussia Dortmund, as they brought a 1-0 victory from their visit to Mainz 05. Augusto scored the winner goal when there were only eight minutes to go, helping his team reach 52 points.
As for No. 3 Hannover, round 26 was one to forget due to the resounding 4-0 defeat suffered in their visit to Colonia. The goals from: Petit, Podolski, and Novakovic twice buried Hannover’s intentions, and keeps them with 47 points.
But for No. 4 Bayern Munich it was a positive round, as they humiliated their visitors Hamburg with a resounding 6-0 and reached 45 points. The goals were scored by Ribery, Muller, Westermann (OG), and three from the MVP of the evening, Robben.
About the Author
Andrew Hill has been a prominent writer on sports news and the sports betting industry for many exceptional sports web sites. You may reprint this article in its full content, please note no modifications to it are accepted.