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Atletico Cuts Barcelona’s Lead; Juventus Extends Advantage

Atletico Madrid cut Barcelona’s lead atop La Liga to eight points with a 2-0 victory against Levante yesterday. Inter Milan tied 1-1 in Italian soccer’s Serie A.

Adrian Lopez and Koke scored for Atletico as it took advantage of Barcelona’s first league defeat of the season, 3-2 at Real Sociedad on Jan. 19. It was Atletico’s 12th straight home win in the league, matching the club record set in games bridging the 1939-40 and 1940-41 seasons.

Cristiano Ronaldo and Angel di Maria each scored twice as Real Madrid cruised to a 5-0 win at Valencia. Barcelona has 55 points, with Atletico on 47 and Real on 40 in third place.

Osasuna beat Deportivo La Coruna 2-1 to climb two spots to 18th in the 20-team standings, with its opponent dropping into last place.

Francesco Totti put Roma ahead in the 22nd minute with a penalty kick and Rodrigo Palacio tied it for Inter in added time at the end of the first half.

Inter is in fourth place in Serie A with 39 points. Defending champion Juventus leads with 48 points, with Napoli and Lazio on 43 points.

Juventus rebounded from a two-match winless run in the league to defeat Udinese 4-0 two days ago. Napoli and Lazio drew 1-1 at Fiorentina and 2-2 at Palermo respectively.

Among yesterday’s games, AC Milan beat Bologna with two goals from Giampaolo Pazzini and bottom club Siena won 1-0 against Sampdoria.

PSG Wins

Paris Saint-Germain moved level on points with Lyon atop Ligue 1 after a 1-0 victory at Bordeaux yesterday. Zlatan Ibrahimovic got the goal two minutes before halftime.

Lyon and PSG have 42 points, one ahead of Marseille. Lyon drew 0-0 against Evian on Jan. 18, while Marseille rallied to defeat defending champion Montpellier 3-2 two days ago with an injury-time winner from Andre-Pierre Gignac.

In the first round of games since the Bundesliga’s winter break, Bayern Munich defeated last-place Greuther Fuerth 2-0 on Jan. 19 to maintain its nine-point lead.

Mario Mandzukic got both goals for Bayern, which has 45 points. The 22-time German champion this week hired former Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola as its next manager to replace Jupp Heynckes, who’ll retire when his contract expires after the season.

Second-place Bayer Leverkusen won 3-1 against Eintracht Frankfurt, which is another six points back along with Borussia Dortmund -- a 5-0 winner at Werder Bremen.

Yesterday, Hamburg tied 1-1 at Nurnberg, and Augsburg won 3-2 at Fortuna Dusseldorf.

Ajax took advantage of slips by FC Twente and PSV Eindhoven as Dutch soccer’s Eredivisie restarted, winning 3-0 against fourth-place Feyenoord yesterday.

The defending champion joins PSV on 40 points, one behind Twente. PSV suffered a 3-1 home defeat to Zwolle on Jan. 18, while Twente was held to a scoreless tie by RKC Waalwijk two days ago.

WEEKEND RESULTS
===============
Spain: Espanyol 3-2 Real Mallorca, Granada 2-0 Rayo Vallecano,
Real Sociedad 3-2 Barcelona, Getafe 1-1 Sevilla, Malaga 1-1
Celta Vigo, Osasuna 2-1 Dep. La Coruna, Real Valladolid v Real
Zaragoza, Atletico Madrid 2-0 Levante, Valencia 0-5 Real Madrid.
Today: Real Betis vs Athletic Bilbao.

Italy: Palermo 2-2 Lazio, Juventus 4-0 Udinese, Fiorentina 1-1
Napoli, AC Milan 2-1 Bologna, Atalanta 1-1 Cagliari, Chievo 1-1
Parma, Genoa 0-2 Catania, Pescara 0-2 Torino, Siena 1-0
Sampdoria, Roma 1-1 Inter Milan.

Germany: Schalke 5-4 Hanover, Bayer Leverkusen 3-1 Eintracht
Frankfurt, Bayern Munich 2-0 Greuther Furth, Hoffenheim 0-0 B.
Monchengladbach, Mainz 0-0 Freiburg, Wolfsburg 2-0 Stuttgart,
Werder Bremen 0-5 Borussia Dortmund, Nurnberg v Hamburg, Fortuna
Dusseldorf 2-3 Augsburg.

France: Lyon 0-0 Evian, Marseille 3-2 Montpellier, AC Ajaccio 1-
1 Valenciennes, Brest 0-1 St Etienne, Lorient 3-2 Troyes,
Sochaux 1-0 Reims, Toulouse 2-1 Nancy, Bastia 0-2 Rennes, Lille
v Nice, Bordeaux 0-1 Paris St Germain.

Netherlands: PSV Eindhoven 1-3 FC Zwolle, AZ Alkmaar 4-1 Vitesse
Arnhem, FC Twente 0-0 RKC Waalwijk, Heerenveen 0-1 Heracles, NAC
Breda 1-0 VVV, Ajax 3-0 Feyenoord, Groningen 0-2 FC Utrecht,
Roda JC 2-0 NEC Nijmegen, Willem II 1-1 ADO Den Haag.

To contact the reporter on this story: James Cone in London at jcone@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Christopher Elser at celser@bloomberg.net.

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