Messi and Neymar on target as 10-man Barca extends La Liga lead

Author : turkieses2018
Publish Date : 2021-04-07 09:44:46

Messi and Neymar on target as 10-man Barca extends La Liga lead

The South American duo gave Barca a 2-0 win and put the pressure on second-placed Real Madrid ahead of Sunday's trip to Celta Vigo.

Neymar, who netted both goals in the midweek European Champions League win over Paris St. Germain, opened the scoring in the 17th minute.

The Brazilian grabbed his 19th league goal this season in the 17th minute from Jordi Alba's cross.

Messi, who began that move, doubled Barca's lead eight minutes later from a tight angle after being set up by Luis Suarez.

It was the Argentine's 47th goal in 48 games this season, and his 36th in La Liga -- leaving him second in the 'Pichichi' standings behind Real's Cristiano Ronaldo.

Alba was sent off nine minutes after the halftime break, with the Spain defender booked twice in succession for dissent to the referee.

Mid-table Espanyol, which lost 5-1 at the Camp Nou in December as Messi bagged a hat-trick, could not capitalize on having an extra man -- and lost defender Hector Moreno late in the match in similar circumstances to Alba's dismissal.

'We've survived another week and still depend on ourselves. That's the most important thing,' said Barcelona coach Luis Enrique.

'The five games left have their own challenges. The most important stretch is coming up.'

The match marked the 500th La Liga appearance of veteran Barca midfielder Xavi Hernandez, who came on as a second-half replacement for Andres Iniesta to become the eighth player to reach the milestone.

Meanwhile, third-placed Atletico Madrid moved within four points of city rival Real with a 3-0 win at home to Elche.

France forward Antoine Griezmann netted twice to be the league's third-highest scorer on 22, while Raul Garcia added the other -- all coming in the second half.

German Bundesliga

Bayern Munich will be crowned champion of German for the 25th time on Sunday unless second-placed Wolfsburg wins at Borussia Moenchengladbach.

Pep Guardiola's team is poised for a third successive title -- two of them since the Spaniard took charge -- following Saturday's 1-0 win at Hertha Berlin.

Bastian Schweinsteiger's 80th-minute strike put Bayern 15 points clear with four matches to play, seeking a second treble in three seasons ahead of Tuesday's German Cup semifinal against Borussia Dortmund and next month's Champions League last-four showdown with Barcelona.

Wolfsburg travels to a Gladbach side battling to earn Germany's third automatic Champions League spot -- Dieter Hecking's team is a point behind Bayer Leverkusen, which drew 1-1 at Cologne on Saturday.

Dortmund won 2-0 at home to Eintracht Frankfurt to move up to eighth.

English Premier League

Defending champion Manchester City moved up to second place with a 3-2 win at Aston Villa, thanks to an 89th-minute goal from Brazilian midfielder Fernandinho.

City could drop back to fourth by the end of Sunday, if Arsenal and Manchester United win respectively against leader Chelsea and Everton.

Chelsea will seek to extend its nine-point advantage, having played two fewer games than Manuel Pellegrini's City side.

Liverpool's hopes of a top-four spot seem to be over following a 0-0 draw at West Brom.

Now seven points behind United, Brendan Rodgers' team -- beaten by Villa in last weekend's FA Cup semifinals -- is left in a scrap for a Europa League place with Tottenham and Southampton, who drew 2-2.

Watford will play in the top flight for the first time in eight years after winning 2-0 at Brighton, and can clinch the Championship title by winning the final match next Saturday.

Bournemouth, which hosts Bolton on Monday, is battling Norwich and Middlesbrough for the other automatic promotion place.

French Ligue 1

Defending champion Paris St. Germain bounced back from the defeat against Barca by moving three points clear at the top of the French table with a 6-1 thrashing of Lille.

Argentina forward Ezequiel Lavezzi scored a hat-trick while Uruguay striker Edinson Cavani netted twice against a visiting side who had defender Sebastien Corchia sent off for a second booking in the 72nd minute, with his team already 4-1 down.

Second-placed Lyon, which has already played the same amount of games as PSG, faces a trip to relegation-threatened Reims on Sunday.

Italian Serie A

Roma's hopes of being runner-up in Italy for a second successive year suffered a blow Saturday with a 2-1 defeat at Inter Milan.

Belgian midfielder Radja Nainggolan equalized Hernanes' opener for Inter, but Mauro Icardi became Serie A's second-highest scorer on 17 goals with an 88th-minute winner.

The defeat left Roma level on points with second-placed city rival Lazio, which hosts Chievo Verona on Sunday.

Champions League semifinalist Juventus, seeking a fourth successive title, has a 15-point lead ahead of Sunday's Turin derby at Torino.

Inter moved up to seventh place, while city rival AC Milan was 10th after Saturday's 2-1 defeat at Udinese.

Read: Ronaldo vs. Messi - Who will win?

Read: Barcelona to play Bayern in Euro semis


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