Around The First Four of The Big Four I
Setback for Barcelona in Gijon
On their trip to Gijon, Barcelona tied their second match of the season 1-1 against Sporting for match day 22. La Liga leaders where down by one since minute 16, and with 11 minutes to go before the end David Villa was able to send the ball over golie Ivan Cuellar with a an elegant play to even the score. Barcelona gets to 62 points after leaving behind two points, something from which their closest contender, Real Madrid, would benefit from.
An eight-point difference separated Real Madrid from Barcelona prior to their visit to Espanyol. With a win the Whites could reduce that difference to five, which they ended up doing thanks to a lonely goal from Marcelo in the 23rd minute of the first half. From the first play of the game Real Madrid played with ten players after goalie Iker Casillas got a direct red card for a foul on Jose Callejon outside the penalty area.
In the fight for the third place Virrareal lost it to Valencia due to their defeat at La Coruna by 1-0 against Deportivo. That result combined with Valencia's on the road 2-1 win versus Atletico de Madrid, via two goals from Joaquin Sanchez, gave them the lead in the standings with 47 points over 45 from Virrareal.
In Italy, Milan got back to the victory lane after tying two games in a row. Their victim was Parma, whom they defeated at home by a resounding 4-0. Antonio Cassano was the MVP of the game scoring one goal and assisting in both of Robinho's goals. Clarence Seedoorf had opened the score previously. With 52 points Milan continues on top of the Serie A after 25 rounds.
Three points away comes Napoli putting more pressure on them. The Azurri defeated Roma on the road by 2-0, both goals scored by their striker Edison Cavani, who reached to 20 goals in the season and is the top scorer of the Serie A.
No. 3 Lazio defeated Brescia 2-0 on the road and now has 45 goals where scored by Alvaro Gonzales in the first half and Libor Kozak in the second.
While for the fourth place and defending champions Inter this was a negative round, as they lost on their visit to Turin by 1-0 versus Juventus. Now their city rivals and Serie A leaders have increased to eight points the distance between them, but to their favor is the fact that they have one pending game against Fiorentina, which if won this Wednesday will reduce the difference to five points once again.
Rooney's overhead kick wins Manchester's derby
In the city of Manchester's derby between the Red Devils and the Citizens one of the best goals of the year was scored. It was an overhead kick by Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney, when the game was tied to one in the 78th minute of play time. Previously Nani had given the lead in the score to the Red Devils with four minutes to go before the end of the first half. Later in the second half David Silva was going to even things up for the Citizens, until Rooney scored the winner goal that gave Manchester United three more points.
The Red Devils continue in the first place of the Premier League standings with 57 points and one pending match, while the Citizens remain in third place with 49 points after 27 rounds.
Second place Arsenal -who also has a pending game- defeated Wolverhampton Wanderers at home 2-0. Both goals where scored by Robinvan Persie, one in each half. The Gunners reached 53 points withthat victory, keeping alive their chances of winning the Premier League for the first time since the 2003-04 season.
Benefited from Chelsea's tie with no goals against Fulham, Tottenham Hotspur took the forth place away from the Blues with their 2-1 on the road victory against Sunderland. The Spurs overcame an early goal from Asamoah Gyan with two goal from Michael Dawson in the first half, and Niko Kranjcar in the second for the come-from-behind victory.Tottenham is now fourth with 47 points, two more than Chelsea.
The leaders lose two points in Kaiserslautern
Borussia Dortmund, leader of the Bundesliga with 52 points in 22 games, was only able to tie to one in their visit to Bender goal had put Borussia ahead in the score with nine minutes to go, but a crunch time goal from Jan Moravek evened things up for the home team, frustrating the No. 1 team.
Bayer Leverkusen had no problems in their visit to Eintracht Frankfurt and comfortably won 3-0 to put themselves two points closer to the leader Borussia Dortmund, but the distance is still considerable as 10 points separates them. Simon Rolfes and Renato Augusto in the first half, along with Hanno Balitsch in the second scored the goals.
The same situation was experienced by Bayer Munich, who had no problems to overcome their rival TSG Hoffenheim at home by 4-0, but is still far away -13 point difference- from the leaders. The goals were product of Mario Gomes and Thomas Muller in the first half, and Arjen Robben twice in the second one. With the victory Bayern reached to 39 points in Bundesliga and is third.
No. 4 Hannover 96 did suffer a setback in their visit to Werder Bremen, as they tied to one a game that they were winning with Didier Ya Konan's goal in the 26th minute of the first half, but a distraction during the second half in a free kick allowed Per Mertesacker to tie the game. With that result Hannover now has 38 points in 22 matches.