Tuesday, May 18, 2021

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European Football Review: Bayern streak broken, Man City Crumbles, Ronaldo rescues point

After an eventful summer, FC Barcelona reassured themselves after their win against Villarreal. In England, the weekend was more complicated for Manchester City who lost at home by a score of 5 to 2 against Leicester. Across the Rhine, after ten months of invincibility, Bayern Munich suffered a heavy defeat in the Bundesliga at Hoffenheim (4-1).

Premier League: City crumbles

Manchester City suffered a heavy loss (5-2) at home to Leicester on Sunday in the Premier League. The Citizens have fallen back into their pitfalls of last season after losing their lead and conceding three penalties in the process. Riyad Mahrez opened the scoring after placing the ball at he top corner with only four minutes of play. Last season’s Premier League top scorer, Jamie Vardy was the executioner of Pep Guardiola’s men, causing and converting two penalties.

Thanks to this victory, Leceister sits.top of table with nine points. The Foxes are ahead of Everton in the standings on goal difference. Everton won 3-1 against Crystal Palace, with Carlo Ancelotti’s players continuing their flawless performance since the start of the season. Meanwhile, Tottenham was deprived of a deserved victory against Newcastle (1-1) after a penalty was awarded for a hand ball and after consultation with the VAR. Newcastle who produced a poor performance for the whole of 94 minutes (5 shots, 0 on target), equalized through Callum Wilson, after the referee considered that the ball having touched the arm of Eric Dier, was worth a penalty. Provisionally third in the standings, Arsenal faces Liverpool on Monday evening.

La Liga: Ansu Fati’s brace

Barcelona reassure themselves In their first match of the season, Barcelona, who have had an eventful summer, reassured themselves with a 4-0 win over Villarreal.

The Spanish prodigy Ansu Fati, who scored a brilliant double, gave Barça a glimpse of light. While the pressure was enormous on their shoulders, after the recent transfers of several players club, the abortive departure of the legendary Lionel Messi and the issue surrounding their current management, 17-year-old Ansu Fati seemed to feel none of it.

The Argentinian striker also scored from the penalty spot. Atletico Madrid were the weekend’s big hit. The Colchoneros curbed Granada (6-1). Luis Suarez, fresh from Barcelona, set up an assist and scored two goals in the parry, while Real Madrid, who were held at bay by Betis Sevilla on Saturday night, winning 4-3 at the end after their opening 0-0 draw at Real Sociedad on Sunday. Real Betis and Sevilla top the standings with two wins from three games.

Serie A: Ronaldo saves Juve

Juventus relied, as often, on Cristiano Ronaldo to save a point in Rome (2-2) against a resilient Roma. Leading 2-1 and reduced to ten men on the hour after Rabiot’s dismissal, the defending champions were in a bad way. But the Portuguese used his legendary trigger to go for an an equaliser in the 69th minute avoiding a first defeat for new coach Andrea Pirlo.

In the standings, Napoli are in the lead on goal difference after beating Genoa 6-0 with goals from Lozano, Zielinski, Mertens, Elmas, Politano. The Sicilians are ahead of AC Milan who won 2-0 at Crotone thanks to goals from Kessié and Diaz. Hellas Verona is third after their victory on their home turf against Udinese (1-0).

Bundesliga: Bayern fall

After almost ten months of invincibility, reigning European champion Bayern Munch fell heavily on Sunday, beaten 4-1 at Hoffenheim on the second day of the Bundesliga. This defeat also puts an end to their record series of 23 consecutive victories in all competitions, which no club in the big five championships had ever achieved before. Bayern had been unbeaten since 7 December 2019 (2-1 in Mönchengladbach).

This victory, thanks notably to a double of Andrej Kramaric, allowed Hoffenheim to share the lead at the top of the table with Augsburg, with 6 points in two matches. Freiburg has missed the opportunity to join them at the top of the Bundesliga. They were unable to get a win after dominating possession at home against Wolfsburg and drew 1-1.

Ligue 1: PSG wins

PSG won for the third time in a row at the poorly-rated Reims (2-0). It was a double from Argentinian Mauro Icardi, who had been lacking in confidence scored his two goals from two decisive passes from Kylian Mbappé, the second of which was created on the edge of the box.

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