European roundup: Inter close on leaders, victory for Barça and Xavi | European club football


Hakan Calhanoglu thrashed dwelling a robust first-half strike and Lautaro Martínez scored a penalty with the final kick of the sport for champions Internazionale to beat Venezia 2-0 and close the hole on the highest two groups in Serie A.

Third-placed Inter are actually one level behind joint leaders Napoli and Milan, who each have dwelling matches on Sunday the place they’ll restore their four-point benefit.

Inter dominated early in opposition to their hosts, who’re again within the high flight of Italian football after an absence of virtually twenty years, however in the long run have been hanging on for victory. Defeat left Venezia nonetheless in fifteenth place and ended a run of successive wins.


Juventus suffered one other setback as they misplaced 1-0 at dwelling to Atalanta, with a fifth defeat in 14 Serie A video games leaving them in eighth place. The hosts struggled to create any openings of be aware within the first half and they left Duván Zapata free to fireplace dwelling within the twenty eighth minute.

Juve failed to supply a lot of a response, with Paulo Dybala’s late free-kick that clipped the crossbar as close as they got here to a leveller.

Atalanta held on in relative consolation and stretched their unbeaten run to eight video games in all competitions to remain fourth on 28 factors, 4 factors behind the leaders, Napoli, and seven factors forward of Juve, who’re 11 factors off the tempo. The victory was Atalanta’s first at Juventus since 1989.

“Atalanta did little in entrance of objective. The one shot was made by Zapata on our mistake,” the Juventus coach, Massimiliano Allegri, mentioned. “Whenever you don’t rating issues get very nervous. The one factor that we have now to do is figure, as we have now at all times performed, and attempt to win a recreation.”

Earlier, Empoli scored two late objectives to earn a dramatic dwelling derby win over Fiorentina. The guests went forward by Dusan Vlahovic earlier than Filippo Bandinelli and Andrea Pinamonti struck within the 87th and 89th minutes. Sampdoria boosted their survival hopes with a 3-1 comeback win at dwelling to Verona.

Memphis Depay celebrates on the closing whistle after his objective helped Barcelona to a 3-1 win over Villarreal. {Photograph}: Aitor Alcalde Colomer/Getty Photos

Barcelona scored twice within the closing levels for a 3-1 triumph at Villarreal to win away for the primary time this season and hand their new coach, Xavi, a second successive La Liga triumph.

Memphis Depay calmly went round goalkeeper Gerónimo Rulli to attain a dramatic 88th-minute objective that restored their lead and Philippe Coutinho added a stoppage-time penalty to go away Barcelona seven factors behind leaders Actual Madrid, who play Sevilla on Sunday.

Villarreal had fought again by Samuel Chukwueze to equalise on 76 minutes after Frenkie de Jong’s early second-half effort had given Barcelona the lead.

Barcelona’s victory adopted a fortuitous 1-0 win over Espanyol final week in Xavi’s teaching debut and a goalless draw with Benfica within the Champions League in midweek.

Erling Haaland scored on his comeback with a second-half volley as Borussia Dortmund got here from a objective right down to beat Wolfsburg 3-1 and keep a degree behind the Bundesliga leaders, Bayern Munich. The Norwegian striker scored within the 81st minute after coming on as a second-half substitute following his restoration from a hip flexor muscle damage that had sidelined him since mid-October.

Erling Haaland of Borussia Dortmund celebrates after scoring the last goal in his side’s 3-1 win at Wolfsburg
Erling Haaland of Borussia Dortmund celebrates after scoring the final objective in his facet’s 3-1 win at Wolfsburg. {Photograph}: Martin Rose/Getty Photos

With their sixth win within the final seven league matches, Dortmund moved as much as 30 factors, one behind Bayern, who edged previous Arminia Bielefeld 1-0 because of Leroy Sané’s highly effective drive within the 71st minute. The Bundesliga’s high two groups face one another subsequent Saturday, with Dortmund at dwelling.

“Rather a lot has occurred prior to now few days. However we performed a superb recreation and the outcome stands above every little thing else,” Dortmund’s Julian Brandt mentioned after his facet crashed out of the Champions League to Sporting Lisbon on Wednesday. “We’re extraordinarily glad. Now we have now a superb full week to organize for Bayern and we’ll go into that recreation with plenty of confidence.”

The Wolves took a second-minute lead by Wout Weghorst who headed in on the close to put up to finish a textbook break that had left the Dortmund backline uncovered.

The Ruhr valley club levelled with an Emre Can penalty within the thirty fifth after Marco Reus was introduced down within the field by Wolfsburg’s Maxence Lacroix. Donyell Malen put them in entrance by rifling in from a Reus move to attain for the third consecutive recreation in all competitions.

There was extra excellent news for the guests, with Haaland making a second-half substitute look and trying as sharp as ever forward of the massive recreation in opposition to the Bavarians subsequent week. He wanted solely eight minutes on the pitch to bag his tenth league objective in seven appearances, volleying in from close vary to develop into the youngest participant to achieve 50 Bundesliga objectives at 21 years and 128 days.

Bayern have had a turbulent few days after final week’s Bundesliga loss to Augsburg and a string of Covid-19 circumstances, and they have been pissed off in a dominant first half by Arminia’s goalkeeper, Stefan Ortega.

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After the break the Bavarians picked up the place they left off and had two early golden probabilities by Sané and Thomas Müller. Sané had one other good alternative within the 57th with a volley that sailed simply broad however he didn’t miss within the 71st, rifling in from outdoors the field from a Müller move.

The substitute Serge Gnabry rattled the bar minutes later nevertheless it was Sané’s objective that meant Bayern set a league document with 102 Bundesliga objectives in a calendar yr, beating Cologne’s mark from 1977

Sebastian Andersson scored in damage time as Köln beat Borussia Monchengladbach 4-1 within the Rhine derby. The Augsburg substitute Michael Gregoritsch equalised within the seventh minute of damage time to salvage a 1-1 draw at Hertha Berlin.

Hoffenheim routed last-place Greuther Fürth 6-3 away and Bochum got here from behind to beat visiting Freiburg 2-1.

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