European football leagues (La Liga, Ligue 1, Bundesliga, Serie A, etc.) 2021-22 Discussion Thread


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  1. #1
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    European football leagues (La Liga, Ligue 1, Bundesliga, Serie A, etc.) 2021-22 Discussion Thread

    WHEN DOES THE 2021-22 LA LIGA START AND END?

    La Liga action kicks off on the weekend of August 14 with Valencia hosting Getafe on Friday 13.

    The campaign concludes on Sunday, May 22.

    Rayo Vallecano, Espanyol and Mallorca will be testing themselves against the top sides this year following promotion, while La Liga will be without relegated teams Eibar, Huesca and Real Valladolid.


    WHEN DOES THE 2021-22 SERIE A START AND END?

    Serie A champions Inter Milan feature in the opening game of the 2021-22 season when they host Genoa on Saturday, August 21.

    The final round of matches are due to take place on Sunday, May 22.

    Empoli, Salernitana and Venezia all achieved promotion from Serie B last term and will replace Parma, Crotone and Benevento in Italy's most competitive league.


    WHEN DOES THE 2021-22 BUNDESLIGA START AND END?

    Bayern Munich face Borussia Monchengladbach in the first match on Friday, August 13.

    The Bundesliga season concludes a week earlier than the other top European leagues with final matches taking place on Saturday, May 14.

    Bochum and Greuther Furth are the newly promoted teams to look out after replacing the relegated Schalke and Werder Bremen.


    WHEN DOES THE 2021-22 LIGUE 1 START AND END?

    Ligue 1 is the first of the Europe's top five leagues to begin with Monaco taking on Nantes on Friday, August 6.

    The season concludes on Saturday, May 21.

    Clermont Foot and Troyes earned promotion to Ligue 1 last season while Dijon FCO and Nimes were relegated from the top division.


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  2. #2
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  3. #3
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    Karim Benzema scored twice as Real Madrid beat Alaves in their La Liga opener as Carlo Ancelotti and Gareth Bale returned to the club.

    Bale, back from a loan spell at Tottenham, was in former Everton boss Ancelotti's first starting XI.

    Eden Hazard set up Benzema's opener with a nice flick and Nacho doubled the lead with a volley.

    Benzema scored again and Joselu slotted a penalty for Alaves before Vinicius Jr scored a late fourth for Real.

    David Alaba made his Real debut at left-back after his free-transfer move from Bayern Munich - and set up that late Vinicius goal.

    Real laboured in the first half but cruised after the break, with Hazard looking in good shape following the fitness problems that have plagued his time at Madrid so far.

    A backheel pass by the Belgium playmaker for Benzema's opener in particular was outstanding.

    Bale's Real Madrid career looks revived after the appointment of Ancelotti, having struggled to get in Zinedine Zidane's team before going to Spurs for a year. His previous Real game was against Mallorca in June 2020.

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  4. #4
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    Barcelona began life without Lionel Messi by beating Real Sociedad in an entertaining La Liga opener.

    Gerard Pique opened the scoring for Barca with a powerful header from Memphis Depay's free-kick.

    Martin Braithwaite scored either side of half-time to become the first Danish player to score a La Liga brace.

    Real Sociedad pulled it back to 3-2 through Julen Lobete and Mikel Oyarzabal but Sergi Roberto added a fourth for Barcelona in added time.

    It was fitting that Barca's first goal of the season was scored by Pique after the defender agreed to reduce his wages earlier in the week so the club could register three new signings in time for the new season.

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  5. #5
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    16th August:

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    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

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  7. #6
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    Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski scored twice to help his side retain the German Super Cup with a 3-1 win over Borussia Dortmund.

    Lewandowski put Bayern in front shortly before half-time, before Thomas Muller added a second just after the restart.

    Marco Reus pulled a goal back for the hosts at Signal Iduna Park on 64 minutes.

    But Lewandowski restored his side's two-goal lead 10 minutes later with his 24th strike against his former club.

    The Poland international spent four years at Dortmund between 2010 and 2014.

    The German Super Cup is contested between the champions of the Bundesliga, which Bayern won for a record-extending ninth time in a row last year, and the DFB-Pokal winners.


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  8. #7
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    Robert Lewandowski wants a new challenge away from Bayern Munich but the club has valued him at more than £100m.

    Sky Sports News has been told Lewandowski, who turns 33 on Saturday, is happy at Bayern but wants to secure a move to another top European club before the age of 35.

    The German champions' valuation, designed to keep him until the end of his contract in 2023, is likely to price the FIFA and UEFA player of the year out of a departure.


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  9. #8
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    Paris St-Germain were without a number of star players, including new signing Lionel Messi and Neymar, but still had too much for Brest as they made it three wins out of three to top Ligue 1.

    Ander Herrera's volley and a Kylian Mbappe header put PSG in control before Franck Honorat pulled one back.

    Idrissa Gueye fired in from way out, but Brest refused to lie down with Steve Mounie side-footing in.

    Substitute Angel di Maria decided the contest for good with a neat lob.

    Six-time Ballon d'Or winner Messi is yet to feature for PSG after joining from Barcelona earlier this month.

    Both the 34-year-old and fellow forward Neymar started pre-season training late after an extended break following the Copa America, in which Messi's Argentina beat his club-mate's Brazil 1-0 in the final in Rio on 11 July.

    Also absent was another summer signing, defender Sergio Ramos, while European Championship-winning Italian goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma was on the bench.

    Such is the frightening level of talent available to PSG boss Mauricio Pochettino, his starting XI still included a host of internationals, including Mbappe, Achraf Hakimi, Giorginio Wijnaldum and Marco Verratti.

    Italian Verratti should have scored from close range in the first half before Herrera showed him the way with his brilliantly-executed finish from outside the box.

    PSG looked to be pulling away when Mbappe latched on to a loose ball to head in but Honorat was set up to fire in on the break as Brest kept the result in the balance.

    The best goal of the lot came from Gueye, who picked the ball up midway inside the Brest half and firing a dipping effort into the bottom corner - just his fourth PSG goal in 79 games.

    Mounie kept the game alive, but sub Di Maria underlined PSG's quality with a lovely lobbed finish after a rapid break.

    It takes Mauricio Pochettino's side to nine points, three more than Angers and Clermont, both of whom play their own third game of the league season on Sunday.

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  10. #9
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    Jude Bellingham played a part in a Borussia Dortmund goal and hit the post but could not stop them slipping to a Bundesliga defeat at Freiburg.

    Outstanding goals early in each half from Vincenzo Grifo and Roland Sallai gave the home side control but Dortmund had hope when Bellingham's volley went in off Yannik Keitel for an own goal.

    The visitors controlled possession but lacked cutting edge in the final third.

    Defeat leaves Dortmund with three points from their first two games.

    Dortmund had equalled the club record of eight successive league wins with victory over Eintracht Frankfurt in the season opener but rarely looked like breaking the record here.

    Their best chance to equalise fell to the usually clinical Erling Braut Haaland, but he spooned over when clean through.

    This defeat caps a disappointing week for Dortmund, who also lost in the German Super Cup to Bayern in midweek.

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  11. #10
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    Barcelona moved to the top of La Liga on goals scored as Memphis Depay rescued a point in an entertaining draw at Athletic Bilbao.

    Depay's ferocious strike cancelled out Inigo Martinez's headed opener after Athletic Bilbao had dominated.

    Both sides hit the crossbar and passed up numerous chances to claim all three points.

    Barca defender Eric Garcia was sent off in injury time for fouling Nico Williams when clean through.

    There is no doubt Ronald Koeman's side are in transition - the loss of Lionel Messi leaving them in search of a new talisman and trying to find new ways to win.

    But in Depay they may have a new hero. He scored a blistering first goal for the club and could have scored a winner, only to drag wide late on.

    Bilbao had sensed weakness and tore into their illustrious visitors from the kick-off.

    Inaki Williams terrorised a nervous-looking Barca backline and strike partner Ohian Sancet hit the crossbar with a skilful swivel and shot.

    Gerard Pique limped off for Koeman's side midway through the first half and replacement Ronald Araujo had a spectacular goal disallowed for a foul by Martin Braithwaite.

    Frenkie de Jong's impudent chip almost levelled before Depay's strike - but Koeman faces defensive issues for next week's home match with Getafe after Garcia hauled down Williams in stoppage time and was sent off.

    Title rivals Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid will have the chance to leapfrog Barcelona should they win their games on Sunday.


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  12. #11
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    21st August scores

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  13. #12
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    Fabrice N'Sakala: Besiktas defender "doing better" after collapsing during league match

    Besiktas say defender Fabrice N'Sakala is "doing much better" after collapsing during Saturday's Turkish Super Lig match with Gaziantep.

    N'Sakala, 31, fell to the ground in the 70th minute and was taken to hospital, but the cause is not yet known.

    Besiktas said their left-back was conscious, and the decision was precautionary.

    The match, in which on-loan Chelsea striker Michy Batshuayi made his debut for Besiktas, ended 0-0.

    "The Congolese international left-back was taken to the hospital immediately," his club said in a statement on Sunday. "The early reports have shown that he is in better condition and doing quite well.

    "Besiktas have thanked those football lovers who have shown concern."

    The incident comes two months after Denmark midfielder Christian Eriksen suffered a cardiac arrest on the pitch during a Euro 2020 group-stage match against Finland in Copenhagen.

    https://www.bbc.com/sport/football/58297651

  14. #13
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    Fans invade pitch
    Nice were leading 1-0 when a group of home fans stormed on to the pitch
    Dimitri Payet was hit by a bottle and threw it back into the crowd before fans stormed the pitch causing Nice v Marseille to be abandoned.

    Marseille's Payet was struck in the back by a bottle thrown from the home supporters as he went to take a corner.

    He launched it back, leading to fans pouring on to the pitch as stewards and players struggled to restrain them.

    After a long delay, Nice's players came out to finish the game - but Marseille's players refused to.

    The game was abandoned as a result. Nice were leading 1-0 through Kasper Dolberg's first-half goal.

    Some of the Marseille players were reportedly injured in the trouble.

    "Our players were attacked," said Marseille president Pablo Longoria.

    "We decided for the safety of our players, who were attacked during the pitch invasion, not to resume the match because the safety of our players was not guaranteed."

    The chaos continued as the players tried to leave the pitch, with scuffles breaking out and Marseille coach Jorge Sampaoli having to be held back by his staff.

    Marseille players had been targeted by plastic water bottles from that section of the crowd throughout the match, before one hit Payet and saw the midfielder fall to the ground.

    In the melee that followed, team-mates Alvaro Gonzalez and Matteo Guendouzi ran towards the end of the ground to face down the fans and Nice skipper Dante then attempted to calm angry supporters.

    A security cordon of stewards tried to stem the pitch invasion before a brawl broke out between players of the two teams, supporters and staff.

    Players and officials eventually made it off the pitch and back down the tunnel away from the chaos outside.

    It comes after Marseille's opening 3-2 win at Montpellier two weeks ago was also held up when fans pelted the pitch with bottles.

    That game was halted in the 89th minute after Marseille substitute Valentin Rongier was hit on the head and Montpellier's Florent Mollet was also hit as he prepared to take a corner.

    Citing that game a fortnight ago, Longoria added: "This is the second time it's happened. We have already experienced this in Montpellier where we decided to continue after the decision to carry on was made.

    "What happened today is unacceptable. We must make it a precedent for French football and that's why we decided to return to Marseille."

    However, Nice president Jean-Pierre Rivere, who had appealed for calm over the stadium's public address system during the delay, felt some blame for the scenes lay with Marseille.

    "It's disappointing that the game ended like this," he said.

    "Everyone saw what happened. We can't deny that water bottles were thrown because we could all see it. What ignited the clashes was the reaction of two Marseille players who retaliated.

    "Afterwards, it is deplorable that the Marseille security staff intervened on the ground and hit our players."


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  15. #14
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  16. #15
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    Joaquin Correa came off the bench to score two late goals on his Inter Milan debut as the defending Serie A champions beat Verona.

    Ivan Ilic intercepted a poor Samir Handanovic pass and chipped the keeper to give the hosts a shock lead.

    Lautaro Martinez levelled with a header from a flicked-on long throw-in.

    Correa, on loan from Lazio, headed Matteo Darmian's cross into the top corner and then hammered in a second in injury time from 20 yards.

    Inter only completed the signing of the 27-year-old Argentina international the day before the game.

    Simone Inzaghi's side beat Genoa 4-0 in their season-opener on Saturday.

    BBC


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  17. #16
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    Borussia Dortmund beat Hoffenheim in a thriller - with all three of their goalscorers born in England.

    The England midfielder Jude Bellingham, from Stourbridge, set up Sunderland-born Giovanni Reyna for the opener.

    After Christoph Baumgartner equalised, 18-year-old Bellingham hammered in from the edge of the box.

    Munas Dabbur scored in the 90th minute for Hoffenheim - but then Erling Braut Haaland, from Leeds, blasted in an injury-time winner.

    Haaland plays for Norway and Reyna is a USA international, with both born in England while their fathers played in the Premier League. Claudio Reyna had two years at Sunderland, while Alf-Inge Haaland played for Nottingham Forest and Leeds - and both had spells at Manchester City.

    Reyna's goal for Dortmund came on the day he became the youngest player to feature in 50 Bundesliga games.

    BBC


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  18. #17
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    27th August scores:

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  19. #18
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    28th August

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  20. #19
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    29th August

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  21. #20
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    12th September, 2021

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  22. #21
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    Bayern Munich cruised to an emphatic 7-0 victory over VfL Bochum to move to the top of the German Bundesliga.

    Joshua Kimmich scored twice after Leroy Sane hit an excellent free-kick to begin the rout.

    Serge Gnabry, Robert Lewandowski and Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting also got on the scoresheet as Vasilis Lampropoulos put through his own net.

    Bayern were playing in a dark green Oktoberfest kit, their fourth different shirt this season.

    Victory was all-but assured at half-time when Bochum centre-back Lampropoulos converted into his own goal to hand the hosts a 4-0 lead at the Allianz Arena.

    The thrashing takes Bayern's goal tally to 20 after their opening five games of the season, although Wolfsburg can move back to the top of the table if they beat Eintracht Frankfurt on Sunday.

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  23. #22
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    18th September:

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    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  24. #23
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    19th September:

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    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  25. #24
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  26. #25
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    Ronald Koeman "won't answer any more questions about the future" after Ronald Araujo's injury-time header rescued a point for his poor Barcelona side against Granada.

    It did little to paper over the cracks of another poor home display as the pressure continues to build on Koeman.

    Centre-back Araujo - playing as a makeshift striker - found the net right at the end of a half Barca dominated.

    Granada had led from the second minute through Domingos Duarte's header.

    But having been humbled by Bayern in the Champions League last week, it will do little to lift spirits, as questions continue to be asked about Koeman's future as Barcelona boss.

    And Granada will be disappointed not to have picked up a first win of the season - and second victory in two seasons at the Nou Camp - after dealing so well for so long with the home side's aerial bombardment.

    The final whistle was met with whistles by the home crowd, who were disappointed with the result and unimpressed by the hosts' direct style of play.

    "We changed our style a little bit," Koeman said. "If you see the list of players, what do you do? Play tiki-taka? Tiki-taka when there are no spaces?

    "We did what we had to do. We tried to win another way. We don't have players one-on-one or with speed. We're talking... I'm not going to say more because it seems I have to argue about everything."

    In total, Barca sent over a remarkable 45 open-play crosses in the game in search of an equaliser, with only a Sergi Roberto poked shot and Araujo header superbly saved by Luis Maximiano to show for their first-half efforts.

    It was only in the second period, with towering defenders Gerard Pique and Araujo pushed up top alongside substitute striker Luuk de Jong that the visiting backline was properly and consistently tested.

    It looked like De Jong had spurned the golden chance, somehow heading over from inside the six-yard box, but Araujo showed him the way with a composed and well-taken effort.

    Barca remain unbeaten in La Liga, with this result taking them up to seventh with eight points from four games.

    They now face two games before the week is out - at Cadiz and then at home to Levante - before a big Champions League trip to Benfica a week on Wednesday.

    Granada are winless and sit 17th on three points.


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  27. #26
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    25th September:

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    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  28. #27
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    26th September:

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    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  29. #28
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    2nd October:

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    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  30. #29
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    Reigning champions Atletico Madrid went level with Real Madrid at the top of La Liga and inflicted further damage on Ronald Koeman's struggling Barcelona with a deserved win in Spain's capital.

    Thomas Lemar scored the opener, finishing well at the end of a move involving Joao Felix and Suarez.

    Suarez then slotted in against his former club to put Atletico in charge.

    Antoine Griezmann also featured against his former club as a late substitute as Atletico basked in their superiority.

    For all the woe surrounding Barca this season, this loss was actually their first in La Liga - but it leaves them eighth in the table on 12 points, five behind Diego Simeone's side, who are second only on goal difference but have played a game more than rivals Real.

    Prior to this, Barca had three wins and three draws to their name, with back-to-back chastening 3-0 losses in the Champions League doing most to harm Koeman's position at the club.

    Barca had chances on Saturday, especially at 1-0, with Philippe Coutinho volleying an effort just wide and Frenkie de Jong just inches away from converting from close range following Memphis Depay's header across goal.

    Coutinho also had a great chance to get the visitors back into the game in the second half but saw his shot from inside the box saved by Jan Oblak.

    Despite having much more of the ball, Barcelona were second best at the Wanda Metropolitano, falling to a defeat that may well test president Joan Laporta's assertion from earlier on Saturday that Koeman would continue at the club regardless of the result in Madrid.

    "It's important and well done for his part - because if everything isn't clear in this sense, then it's difficult to work and have the kind of calm you need to try to make the changes we are trying to implement," Koeman said after Saturday's game.

    "We know how it is from today moving forwards... We spoke last night on the phone and then again this morning."

    Barca now have a two-week break from action for internationals, with their next fixture at home to Valencia on 17 October.

    "There's a solution [to what is happening], but it can't be done overnight," added Koeman. "We have to work hard, give time to the youngsters and get back our injured forwards."

    https://www.bbc.com/sport/football/58667966


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  31. #30
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    3rd October:

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    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  32. #31
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    Lazio beat Inter 3-1 at the Olympico after trailing at half-time.

    Lazio's second goal a tad controversial after Filipe Anderson refused to put the ball out of play with one of the Inter players down with a head injury, and then popped up to score from a spilled shot by Handanovic, leading to a fracas between the players.

  33. #32
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  34. #33
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    16th October:

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    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  35. #34
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    Napoli 0-0 against Torino in the second half at the San Paolo thus far, chasing an 8th consecutive win to start the season.

    Earlier Atalanta thrashed Empoli 4-1 away.

  36. #35
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    17th October:

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    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  37. #36
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    Fiorentina away to Venezia in the graveyard Monday night slot this evening, nil-nil after twenty minutes.

    Serie A has become to my view the most watchable league in the world, matches are being played at a quick tempo while not losing any of the customary tactical fluidity for which Italian managers are renowned. Furthermore, there is an inescapable impression of there being a big game or two each weekend.

    It kinda reminds me of the days of English football in the late 90s and early 2000s, when the popularity of the league was exploding worldwide due to the exciting and dynamic style of football on display. The key thing Serie A is missing currently is the marketing that English football had in that era.
    Last edited by Last Monetarist; 19th October 2021 at 01:40.

  38. #37
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    18th October:

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    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  39. #38
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    Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema has gone on trial in France accused of complicity in an attempt to blackmail fellow footballer Mathieu Valbuena over a sex tape found on his phone.

    He has ridiculed the charge against him as a "masquerade" and did not appear at the court in Versailles.

    The case dates back to June 2015, when the two footballers were at a France training camp.

    The saga rocked French football and both players lost their team places.

    Karim Benzema, 33, has since returned to the France team and scored in Real Madrid's victory in Kyiv on Tuesday in the Uefa Champions League. His lawyer put his absence down to "professional" reasons.

    He is on trial with four other men accused of trying to blackmail Mr Valbuena, who told the court on Wednesday that football was his life.

    "I knew if that video got out it would make things difficult with the French team," he said.

    The sex tape case began in 2015 when Mr Valbuena, now 37, asked a man in Marseille, Axel Angot, to upload the contents of his mobile phone to a new device.

    Mr Angot found sexually explicit material on the phone, and he and another defendant in the trial, Mustapha Zouaoui, are then accused of trying to blackmail Mr Valbuena by threatening to make the tape public.

    Mr Zouaoui told reporters he had shared the tape, but there had never been an attempt to extort money.

    Mathieu Valbuena described being approached by another defendant, Younes Houass, who then told the court the player was acting as if nothing was wrong and he had warned him of the seriousness of the issue, without asking for money.

    When the footballer went to the police, they set up a sting operation with an undercover agent named Luka, who was given the task of acting as his intermediary.

    Another defendant was allegedly brought into the scam - Karim Zenati, who is a childhood friend of Mr Benzema. He is then accused of getting the footballer involved, to act as a "middleman" with Mr Valbuena.

    In October 2015 Mr Benzema approached his fellow France player in his room at the national team's training camp.

    Mr Benzema said he had merely tried to help his team-mate get rid of the compromising video, warning him: "Be careful, Math, they're big, big thugs."

    He then offered to put him touch with someone he could trust - his childhood friend, Karim Zenati.

    Police were by now tapping their phone calls and recorded Mr Benzema telling his friend: "He's not taking us seriously."

    Mr Zenati is said to have replied: "We're here to sort it out; if he doesn't want that he'll have to deal with the piranhas."

    Meanwhile, Mr Valbuena is said to have already told his family about the footage on his phone.

    Giving evidence at the start of the trial, Mathieu Valbuena said he had never considered handing over money to stop the video getting out.

    The defence lawyers have already argued that police were wrong to use an undercover agent and that the agent pushed the defendants to demand money. But French courts threw out the lawyers' objections to police methods in 2018.

    The trial will continue until the end of the week, with four defendants facing charges of attempted blackmail and Karim Benzema accused of complicity.

    The maximum sentence for complicity in attempted blackmail is five years in jail and a €75,000 (£63,000) fine.

    Unlike his former team-mate, Mathieu Valbuena has never played for France since the sex-tape affair emerged. He now plays for Olympiacos in Greece.

    BBC


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  40. #39
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    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  41. #40
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    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  42. #41
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    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  43. #42
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    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  44. #43
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    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  45. #44
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    Jose Mourinho's struggles at Roma continued as minnows Venezia came from 2-1 down to sink the Italian giants.

    Roma have won just one of their past seven matches and remain 12 points off leaders Napoli in Serie A.

    Mattia Caldara put the hosts in front in the third minute, before goals from Eldor Shomurodov and Tammy Abraham put Roma ahead at the break.

    Mattia Aramu's penalty levelled the scores with David Okereke scoring the winner in the 74th minute.

    Roma have now lost four of their last seven matches, a run which includes a 6-1 defeat to Norweigen side Bodo/Glimt in the Europa Conference League.

    Venezia's victory was just their third of the campaign, and it was the first time they've scored more than two goals in a game this season.


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  46. #45
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    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  47. #46
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    Real Madrid forward Karim Benzema has been found guilty of complicity in the attempted blackmail of former France team-mate Mathieu Valbuena over a sex tape and sentenced to a one-year suspended jail term by a court in Versailles.

    He was also fined 75,000 euros (£63,000). Benzema's lawyer said the player would appeal against the verdict.

    Benzema, who had denied any wrongdoing, was not in court. He is due to play for the Spanish club against Moldovan side Sheriff Tiraspol later on Wednesday in the Champions League.

    "This outcome in no way corresponds with the reality of events," lawyer Antoine Vey told reporters afterwards.

    Real Madrid did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

    Prosecutors had argued Benzema had encouraged Valbuena to pay a suspected group of blackmailers in order to keep the sexually explicit tape out of the public eye.


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  48. #47
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    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  49. #48
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    Juventus say they are cooperating with investigators after Italian financial police searched the Serie A club's offices seeking information about player trading between 2019 and 2021.

    The Turin club has said chairman Andrea Agnelli, vice-chairman and former player Pavel Nedved, and chief financial officer Stefano Cerrato, along with former Juve officials, are under investigation


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  50. #49
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    Serie A update, 28 November 2021:

    Udinese 0-0 Genoa: FT
    Spezia 0-1 Bologna: FT
    Milan 1-3 Sassuolo: FT

    Huge result for Sassuolo at the San Siro, leaving Milan in 2nd place behind Napoli, who play at home in the late kick-off against Lazio tonight.

  51. #50
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    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  52. #51
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    Juventus could be relegated to Serie B and have their 2020 top-flight title stripped off them due to their investigation into capital gains, a consumer rights watchdog in Italy has claimed


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  53. #52
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    AC Milan moved top of Serie A by beating Salernitana - and paid tribute to injured defender Simon Kjaer, who is not expected to play again this season.

    Franck Kessie put Milan ahead after five minutes with a low shot after a fine run from Rafael Leao, before Alexis Saelemaekers curled in a second.

    After Saelemaekers' goal, he ran to the bench and held up Kjaer's shirt.

    Kjaer, who helped save Denmark team-mate Christian Eriksen's life in the summer, has suffered a knee injury.

    He was injured after four minutes of Milan's 3-0 win over Genoa on Wednesday and is expected to be out for at least six months.

    A statement from Milan on Friday said: "Simon Kjaer underwent arthroscopic surgery today to reconstruct the anterior cruciate ligament and reinsert the medial collateral ligament in his left knee.

    "The operation, which was carried out at the Casa di Cura La Madonnina clinic, was a perfect success."

    On Monday, Kjaer, 32, attended the Ballon d'Or ceremony, where he was named the 18th best player of 2021 and received a round of applause and praise from host Didier Drogba.

    During Denmark's match against Finland in the summer's Euro 2020, Eriksen, 29, suffered a cardiac arrest on the pitch with Kjaer starting the CPR process that helped save his team-mate's life.

    Milan's win takes them above Napoli, who will return to the top if they beat Atalanta at home in the evening game (19:45 GMT).

    Milan have been Italian champions 18 times but not since 2010-11 and this victory means they have won 12 of 16 league games this season.

    BBC


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  54. #53
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    Horrible first hour for Mourinho's Roma at home against Inter, 3-nil down and it can easily get worse. Not looking good for Mourinho, murmurs of discontent among the fans already. It's more evidence he is finished at the top level as a manager.

  55. #54
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    Roma 0 Inter 3 on full-time at the Olympico. Horrible performance by Roma.

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    Last edited by Last Monetarist; 5th December 2021 at 00:28.

  56. #55
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    Real Madrid produced a convincing performance to beat Real Sociedad and extend their lead at the top of La Liga to eight points.

    The impressive Vinicius Jr opened the scoring for the visitors, combining well with Luka Jovic inside the area before finding the bottom corner.

    Jovic, who replaced the injured Karim Benzema in the first half, then scored his first goal of the season, heading in from close range following a corner.

    The hosts created little in response.

    Alexander Isak flicked on a well-weighted delivery from Diego Rico in the first half, but Eder Militao recovered well to block the Sociedad forward's effort.

    Militao, who looked solid in the centre of Madrid's defence, sent Vinicius through with a clever pass late on, but the frontman was denied by the feet of keeper Alex Remiro.

    It means Real Madrid head into the derby against Atletico a week on Sunday with a healthy lead at the top after Diego Simeone's side were beaten 2-1 at home by Mallorca.

    That saw Atletico slip back to fourth on 29 points, with Sevilla now Real's closest challengers on 31 points and with a game in hand on the leaders.

    It was a second successive defeat for Real Sociedad after going 13 unbeaten in the top flight, meaning they sit fifth, level on points with Atletico having played a game more.


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  57. #56
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  58. #57
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    https://www.bbc.com/sport/football/59548308

    The German Football Association is investigating England midfielder Jude Bellingham's comments about referee Felix Zwayer after Borussia Dortmund's 3-2 defeat by Bayern Munich.

    Bellingham, 18, questioned Zwayer's appointment, referring to his six-month ban for a match-fixing scandal in 2005.

    Zwayer rejected Dortmund's appeals for a penalty before giving their rivals a spot-kick for a Mats Hummels handball.

    Robert Lewandowski scored the penalty to secure victory for Bayern.

    Speaking to Viaplay, Bellingham said: "You give a referee, that has match fixed before, the biggest game in Germany. What do you expect?"

    Bayern's win in Der Klassiker on Saturday saw them move four points clear of Dortmund at the top of the Bundesliga.

    "For me, it wasn't [a penalty]. He [Hummels] is not even looking at the ball and he's fighting to get it and it hits him," added Bellingham.

    "You can look at a lot of the decisions in the game."

    The DFB control committee have written to Bellingham and asked him to comment on his statements "as soon as possible".

    Once Bellingham's response has been evaluated, the control committee will decide what action to take.

    Dortmund are "100%" behind Bellingham, said sports director Michael Zorc.

    "It was a very emotional situation, he was very disappointed and only named known facts," Zorc told Ruhr News.

    Dortmund chief executive Hans-Joachim Watzke added: "To be clear, Jude was not spreading lies, but what happened in the past.

    "This statement shouldn't have been, but I don't see anything untrue there. I don't expect that to have any consequences for Jude. "

  59. #58
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  60. #59
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    England midfielder Jude Bellingham has been fined 40,000 euros (£34,000) by the German Football Association after questioning the appointment of referee Felix Zwayer for Borussia Dortmund's Bundesliga match against Bayern Munich.

    Bellingham criticised Zwayer after Dortmund's 3-2 defeat on Saturday, referring to the official's six-month ban for a match-fixing scandal in 2005.

    The 18-year-old has been fined for "unsportsmanlike behaviour".

    Dortmund will not appeal.

    During Saturday's game, Zwayer turned down Dortmund's appeals for a penalty before giving their rivals a spot-kick for a Mats Hummels handball. Robert Lewandowski scored it to give Bayern victory.

    Speaking to Viaplay, Bellingham said: "You give a referee, that has match fixed before, the biggest game in Germany. What do you expect?

    "For me, it wasn't [a penalty]. He [Hummels] is not even looking at the ball and he's fighting to get it and it hits him.

    "You can look at a lot of the decisions in the game."

    Bayern's win in 'Der Klassiker' saw them move four points clear of Dortmund at the top of the Bundesliga.

    Bellingham joined Dortmund from Birmingham City in July 2020 in a deal which could eventually be worth over £30m.

    BBC


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  61. #60
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    Joshua Kimmich: Bayern Munich player suffers lung trouble after Covid

    Bayern Munich utility man Joshua Kimmich has been ruled out until the New Year after suffering a lung problem as a result of Covid-19.

    Kimmich, 26, who admitted he had not been vaccinated against the virus in October, tested positive last month.

    His quarantine period ended on Wednesday.

    Kimmich said he is now "fine" but added he is not yet allowed to push his body to the limit "due to slight infiltration" on his lungs.

    "I'm dying to get started and to be with the team," Kimmich said on Instagram.

    "However, I have to be patient a little longer. I'll watch the remaining three games this year from the couch and we'll attack together again from January."

    The German international, who can play in defence and midfield, was initially forced to isolate after coming into contact with a positive case, which meant he missed a 2-1 defeat by Ausburg.

    He was then absent for Bundesliga matches against Arminia Bielefeld and Borussia Dortmund, as well as Champions League games against Dynamo Kyiv and Barcelona, because he had the virus.

    Kimmich previously suggested scepticism stopped him getting jabbed, but added that there was a "very good chance" he would in the future.

    He will be unavailable against Mainz, Stuttgart and Wolfsburg before the Bundesliga winter break.

    https://www.bbc.com/sport/football/59599689

  62. #61
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    Spanish clubs approve £1.7bn CVC capital injection but Barcelona and Real Madrid opt out

    Thirty-seven clubs voted in favour of the "La Liga Boost" deal that buys CVC an 8.2 per cent stake in a new company that will get revenues from broadcasting and sponsorship; La Liga president Javier Tebas said: "This is a new milestone in the history of La Liga and its clubs."Spanish clubs approved a two billion euro (£1.7bn) investment from private equity fund CVC Capital Partners, but Barcelona and Real Madrid opted out.In the first deal of its kind in Europe, 37 clubs voted in favour of the "La Liga Boost" deal that buys CVC an 8.2 per cent stake in a new company that will get revenues from La Liga broadcasting and sponsorship rights.Real Madrid, Barcelona, Athletic Bilbao and Ibiza voted against the deal, one source close to the negotiations told Reuters.

    There was no immediate official statement from those clubs or details on their next moves.

    At least 32 of the 42 teams from the Spanish first and second divisions needed to back the plan. On top of the four objections, one other club abstained from voting, the source said, without naming the club.La Liga had said the deal would be worth £2.3bn when it was first unveiled in August. The lower figure announced on Friday reflected the opt-outs and will be shared among the participating clubs and paid over a three-year period, the league said.

    It marks the first investment agreement from a private equity firm in a major European League.

    https://www.skysports.com/football/n...madrid-opt-out

  63. #62
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    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  64. #63
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  65. #64
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    Real Madrid won for the 10th game in a row to beat neighbours Atletico Madrid and move eight points clear of Sevilla at the top of La Liga.

    La Liga's top scorer Karim Benzema powered in a fantastic volley from Vinicius Jr's cross to give Carlo Ancelotti's side the lead.

    And Vinicius picked out Marco Asensio to slot home their second.

    Defending champions Atletico, who are 13 points behind Real, had chances but the clinical hosts deserved the win.

    Real have only lost twice in 23 games - and none since 3 October - since Carlo Ancelotti replaced Zinedine Zidane in the summer.

    Diego Simeone's Atletico, who sit fourth, look miles away from the team who won La Liga last season.

    They did force Real keeper Thibaut Courtois into six saves, including to keep out Antoine Griezmann's free-kick.

    A double change at the break and the introduction of Luis Suarez could not help them find a way through though.

    Real deserved their win with Vinicius involved in both goals. Benzema's opener was his 13th La Liga goal of the season and his 36th for Real in all competitions in 2021, his best annual haul for the club. He was replaced by Luka Jovic at the break.

    Barcelona are down in eighth, 18 points behind Real, after a 2-2 draw at Osasuna.

    BBC


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  66. #65
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  67. #66
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    Real Madrid have confirmed that 4 players as well as their technical assistant have tested positive for Covid-19.


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  68. #67
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    Robert Lewandowski scored his 43rd Bayern Munich goal of 2021 to break Gerd Muller's record for the most Bundesliga goals in a calendar year.

    The Poland striker, 33, volleyed home three minutes from time as Bayern thrashed Wolfsburg 4-0 at Allianz Arena.

    Muller's achievement of 42 Bundesliga goals in a year had stood since 1972.

    The win moves Bayern nine points clear of Borussia Dortmund at the top of the table.

    Lewandowski had already broken one of former Bayern Munich striker Muller's 49-year-old league records in May after he scored in the last minute of the season to claim his 41st goal of the 2020-21 campaign.

    Midfielder Thomas Muller, who was celebrating his 400th German top-flight appearance, opened the scoring on seven minutes before setting up Dayot Upamecano with a header in the second half to double Bayern's lead.

    Leroy Sane added to the scoreline two minutes later with a curled shot into the top corner to put the game beyond 12th-placed Wolfsburg.

    On 87 minutes Lewandowski, who missed out on the Ballon d'Or to Paris St-Germain forward Lionel Messi in November, wrote his name in the history books yet again by firing in from close range past goalkeeper Koen Casteels.

    https://www.bbc.com/sport/football/59702618


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  69. #68
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    Friday 17th December:



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  70. #69
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    Roma beat Atalanta 4-1 away, good result for Mourinho. They move up to 5th with 31 points after 18 games.

  71. #70
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    Substitute Nico Gonzalez scored a late winner as Barcelona edged past Elche in La Liga to end their three-game winless run in all competitions.

    Ferran Jutgla headed in an opener for the hosts after 16 minutes before 17-year-old Gavi grabbed his first La Liga goal with a superb solo effort.

    Substitutes Tete Morente and Pere Milla then stunned the hosts as Elche scored twice in as many minutes to draw level.

    But Gonzalez poked into the top corner five minutes from time to win it.

    It means Xavi's side sit seventh, three points off a Champions League spot and 15 behind leaders Real Madrid.

    Barcelona had failed to win their previous three outings, with a 2-2 draw at Osasuna last Sunday following defeats by Bayern Munich in the Champions League and Real Betis in La Liga.

    Jutgla saw an effort ruled out for offside inside 90 seconds but the summer signing did not have to wait long for his first goal at the Nou Camp, heading in Ousmane Dembele's corner.

    The impressive Gavi added a second three minutes later, flicking the ball through his legs on the turn and running directly at the defence before picking out the bottom corner.

    But Barcelona momentarily collapsed in the second half, conceding twice in two minutes as first Morente fired into the roof of the net and then Milla headed in at the back post after the hosts gave the ball away.

    It was an inspired double change from boss Francisco Rodríguez, who saw the substitutes score within five minutes of being brought on.

    Elche looked to have earned a hard-fought point, only for to ball to drop to Gonzalez, who finished smartly to earn Xavi's young side all three points.

    Elche remain 16th, two points above the relegation zone.

    BBC


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  72. #71
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    18th December:



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  73. #72
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    19th December:

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    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  74. #73
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    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  75. #74
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    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  76. #75
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    BREAKING: Lyon and Paris FC have been thrown out of the French Cup after their match was abandoned earlier this month due to crowd trouble.



  77. #76
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    Real Madrid missed the chance to open up an 11-point lead at the top of La Liga as they lost to Getafe.

    Enes Unal scored the only goal after just nine minutes when he robbed Eder Militao of possession inside Real Madrid's penalty area.

    Luka Modric went closest to an equaliser, striking the crossbar with a powerful drive.

    Carlo Ancelotti's side have played two games more than closest challengers Sevilla, who face Cadiz on Monday.

    Real dominated the first half but only forced one save from Getafe goalkeeper David Soria, who did magnificently to tip Modric's long-range drive past the far post.

    The Croatian midfielder also struck the woodwork with a thunderous left-footed shot from the edge of the Getafe penalty area, while Toni Kroos fired wide from a promising position.

    Real increased the pressure in the second half and went close to salvaging a point through Casemiro, but the midfielder's sweetly struck effort was palmed to safety by Soria.

    BBC


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  78. #77
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    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  79. #78
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  80. #79
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    Kylian Mbappe scored a second-half hat-trick as Paris St-Germain beat fourth-tier Vannes in the French Cup last 32.

    Presnel Kimpembe headed in PSG's only goal of the first half from Nuno Mendes' corner.

    Mbappe slotted in from Kimpembe's ball before hitting a sweet first-time effort from 20 yards for his second from a Xavi Simons pass.

    He completed the hat-trick after a one-two with Junior Dina Ebimbe for his 150th PSG goal in 196 games.

    PSG have won six of the past seven French Cups, reaching every final since 2015.

    Lionel Messi was one of four PSG players to miss the game after testing positive for Covid-19.

    BBC


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  81. #80
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    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

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