AC Milan rebounded from last week’s defeat to local rival Inter to beat Novara 3-0 and maintain the pressure on Juventus in Italian soccer’s Serie A. Three teams are tied atop German’s Bundesliga after Borussia Dortmund won 5-1 at Hamburg.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic scored twice yesterday for Milan and Robinho also got a goal for the defending champion, which trails first-place Juventus by one point.
Juventus defeated Atalanta 2-0 two days ago to remain unbeaten through 19 games. Yesterday, third-place Udinese won 2-1 against Catania, while Inter Milan beat Lazio 2-1 to move above the Rome club into fourth spot.
Roma’s Francesco Totti scored twice in a 5-1 win over Cesena on Jan. 21 to move to 211 top-flight league goals for the club, a record for a player with a single team in Serie A.
Robert Lewandowski and Jakub Blaszczykowski each got two goals as Dortmund thrashed Hamburg yesterday, with Kevin Grosskreutz scoring the other goal for last season’s champion.
Dortmund now only trails first-place Bayern Munich on goal difference, with Schalke in third. Two days ago, Bayern lost 3-1 at Borussia Moenchengladbach Jan. 20, while Schalke beat Stuttgart 3-1 the next day. Moenchengladbach is one point back.
Bayer Leverkusen defeated Mainz 3-2 in yesterday’s other match.
Ronaldo Leads Real
Real Madrid restored its five-point lead over Barcelona in Spain’s La Liga with a 4-1 victory against Athletic Bilbao, after its archrival beat Malaga by the same scoreline.
Cristiano Ronaldo scored two penalty kicks for Jose Mourinho’s team, which has finished second to Barcelona the past three seasons. Three goals from Lionel Messi and a strike by Alexis Sanchez gave Barcelona the victory.
Third-place Valencia sits nine points behind Barcelona after being held to a 1-1 tie at Osasuna yesterday.
The top two teams in Dutch soccer’s Eredivisie were both held to 1-1 draws yesterday, AZ Alkmaar at home against Ajax, and PSV Eindhoven at FC Utrecht. AZ has a one-point lead.
FC Twente is now only two points further back. It beat RKC Waalwijk 5-0 two days ago in Steve McClaren’s first league match in charge after returning for a second spell as coach.
Ligue 1 took a break this weekend for the round of 32 in the French Cup.
WEEKEND RESULTS =============== Italy: Roma 5-1 Cesena, Atalanta 0-2 Juventus, Cagliari vs Fiorentina, Bologna 0-0 Parma, Lecce 2-2 Chievo, Novara 0-3 AC Milan, Palermo 5-3 Genoa, Siena 1-1 Napoli, Udinese 2-1 Catania, Inter Milan 2-1 Lazio. Spain: Espanyol 3-0 Granada, Racing Santander 1-2 Getafe, Real Sociedad 0-4 Atletico Madrid, Real Betis 1-1 Sevilla, Osasuna 1- 1 Valencia, Rayo Vallecano 0-1 Real Mallorca, Malaga 1-4 Barcelona, Levante 0-0 Real Zaragoza, Real Madrid 4-1 Athletic Bilbao. Today: Villarreal vs Sporting Gijon. Germany: Borussia Moenchengladbach 3-1 Bayern Munich, Nurnberg 2-0 Hertha Berlin, Hoffenheim 0-0 Hannover, Freiburg vs Augsburg, Schalke 3-1 Stuttgart, Wolfsburg 1-0 Cologne, Kaiserslautern 0-0 Werder Bremen, Hamburg 1-5 Borussia Dortmund, Bayer Leverkusen 3-2 Mainz. Netherlands: Den Haag 3-3 Roda JC, De Graafschap 0-2 Heerenveen, Excelsior 3-0 NAC Breda, FC Twente 5-0 RKC Waalwijk, Vitesse Arnhem 0-1 NEC Nijmegen, AZ Alkmaar 1-1 Ajax, Groningen 2-1 Heracles, VVV 2-1 Feyenoord, FC Utrecht 1-1 PSV Eindhoven.