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Monday, September 23, 2013

EUROPEAN LEAGUES REVIEW: Man City Crash United, Super Mario Misses Penalty as Bayern and Inter Cruise

The fifth week of English Premier League action saw Arsenal wrestle top spot from Liverpool. With the Merseyside club losing 1-0 to Southampton on Saturday, the Gunners’ 3-1 win over Stoke City on Sunday soared them to top spot albeit only on goal difference since they are level on points with Tottenham who beat Cardiff City 1-0. Sergio Aguero netted a brace and Yaya Toure and Samir Nasri were also on target for Manchester City as they handed David Moyes’ Manchester United 4-1 humbling, the reigning champions’ second defeat in five Premier League games. Chelsea got back to winning ways with a 2-0 win over Fulham, Oscar and John Obi Mikel on the score sheet for Jose Mourinho’s men.

Barcelona and Atletico Madrid kept their 100% start to the season with both teams collecting away victories. Pedro Rodriguez netted a hat-trick and Cesc Fabregas also scored in the Catalans 4-0 win at Rayo Vallecano. A goal either side of half-time from Raul Garcia and Diego Costa were enough for Atletico to dismiss Real Valladolid 2-0 at Estadio Municipal Jose Zorrilla. Real Madrid remained within touching distance of the top two with a 4-1 demolition of Getafe, Cristiano Ronaldo grabbing a brace either side of Pepe and Isco’s goals. Madrid are two points adrift of Barca and Atletico who have 15 points. Promoted side Villarreal are 4th on 11 points after their barren draw at Celta de Vigo.

Bayern Munich got themselves level on points with Borussia Dortmund at the top of the German Bundesliga with a 4-0 thumping of Schalke 04. With Dortmund drawing 1-1 against Nurnberg, Bastian Schweinsteiger and Mario Mandzukic gave the Champions league winners a 2-goal caution heading into the interval and they added two more goals courtesy of Frank Ribery and Claudio Pizzaro. Sami Hyypia’s Bayern Leverkusen bounced back from their midweek champions league defeat against Manchester United with an assured 4-1 win at Mainz while Hannover 96 beat Augsburg 2-1 to remain fourth on the log. Eintracht Frankfurt collected their first point of the season after frustrating Stuttgart 1-1.

Mario Balotelli missed the first penalty of his career in AC Milan’s 2-1 loss to Napoli at the San Siro. The Italian forward won the penalty after being brought down in the box in the 59th minute and stepped up to take it only to see Pepe Reina dive on the right side and tip it wide. Super Mario atoned for the miss with a stunning consolation goal in stoppage time. He was then sent off after the final whistle for arguing with the referee. The win kept Rafa Benitez’s 100% win record intact and they lead the standings on 12 points, same as Roma who finally beat AS Lazio 2-0 after they have failed in the previous five attempts. Inter Milan mauled promoted side Sassuolo 7-0 as champions Juventus ensured they are not far off from the pace with a 2-1 win over Hellas Vorona.

The biggest game in the French Ligue 1 was a battle of the moneybags as PSG hosted Monaco. Zlatan Ibrahimovic lived up the match grabbing a goal within the opening five minutes. However, it took only 15 minutes for Monaco to draw level via Radamel Falcao and that was a far as it went in terms of goals as the two teams shared a 1-1 draw which saw Monaco remain top of the log and PSG climb to 2nd and dislodge Saint Etienne who lost 2-1 to Toulouse. Olympique Lyonnais beat Nantes 3-1 to move to 7th place while bottom side Sochaux are still looking for their first win of the season after going down 0-2 to Lille.

And That's thesteifmastertake!!