Leo Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo both dominated the weekend’s action in Spain as usual with a glut of goals on Sunday.
Ronaldo hit a hat trick in a 4-0 win for Real Madrid against city rivals Getafe early in the day, but Messi still managed to out do him, netting four goals in the rout of Osasuna 5-1. Atletico Madrid were beaten 3-0 at the San Mames by Athletic Bilbao as Real close in on their city rivals. Malaga strengthened their hold on fourth with a 3-2 win at Real Mallorca.
Fifth met sixth as Real Betis were beaten 3-0 at Rayo Vallecano, and Valencia continued their recovery with a 3-2 win at Deportivo la Coruna. Levante beat Valladolid 2-1, Real Sociedad drew 1-1 at Celta Vigo and Espanyol drew 0-0 at Real Zaragoza.
Juventus drew 1-1 at home to Genoa in Italy to continue their unconvincing start to the year. The champions and Serie A leaders saw their lead reduced to three points by Napoli, who won 2-1 at Parma. Lazio lost ground with a 1-0 home defeat by Chievo. Fourth place Inter also stumbled, with a 2-2 home draw against Torino. AC Milan close the gap on the top four after a 1-0 win at Atalanta. Another Argentine netted four this weeend as Mauro Icardi led Sampdoria’s 6-0 rout of Pescara. Fiorentina lost 2-1 at Catania and Roma were held 3-3 by Bologna.
Bayern Munich won 2-0 at Stuttgart in Germany to maintain their convincing lead at the top of the Bundesliga. Bayer Leverkusen in second were held 0-0 by Freiburg, while Borussia Dortmund won 3-0 at home to Nurnberg to close the gap. Eintracht Frankfurt retained their grip on fourth with a 2-1 win over Hoffenheim. Borussia Moenchengladbach won by the same score against Fortuna Dusseldorf. Schalke were held 0-0 by Augbsburg. Mainz won 3-0 at rock bottom Greuther Furth to move into fifth.
Paris St Germain remain top of Ligue 1 after a narrow 1-0 win over Lille in Paris on Sunday night. That moved them back above Lyon, who had temporarily gone top with an impressive 2-0 win at Valenciennes earlier in the weekend. The two sides are level on points, with Marseille three behind after a 2-2 draw at fourth placed Rennes. Bordeaux are up to fifth after a 1-0 win at Nice, who are sixth. St Etienne beat Bastia 3-0 to go seventh and Lorient are eight in spite of losing 2-1 at Nancy. Champions Montpellier beat Sochaux 2-0.
In England there were a host of shocks this weekend in the FA Cup. On Sunday three top Premier League sides, Liverpool, Tottenham and Chelsea, all failed to win against lower league opposition. Liverpool lost 3-2 at Oldham of the third tier, Brentford from the same league held Chelsea 2-2, and second tier Leeds shocked Tottenham 2-1. On Saturday Luton, a non-league side, defeated Premier League Norwich 1-0. Other Premier League sides beaten this weekend were Aston Villa, 2-1 by Millwall, and QPR, who lost 4-2 at home to MK Dons. Arsenal beat Brighton 3-2, Manchester City beat Stoke 1-0 and Manchester United won 4-1 at home to Fulham.
In Turkey Galatasaray won the big Istanbul derby against Besiktas 2-1 to build a five point gap between the two sides. Antalyaspor were beaten 2-0 by Kayserispor, and Fenerbahce won 2-1 at Gaziantepspor. Benfica won 2-1 at Braga in Portugal to go top, with Porto having a game on Monday night against Gil Vicente. In the Netherlands PSV went top again with a 5-1 win at Heracles. Feyenoord and Twente drew 0-0, whilst Vitesse beat champions Ajax 3-2.
At the African Cup of Nations, South Africa, Cape Verde and Ivory Coast all made it to the quarter finals this weekend. Ivory Coast, the tournament favourites, made it with a game to spare from Group D after beating Tunisia 3-0, combined with a 2-0 defeat by Togo of Algeria which sent the latter out. South Africa’s late equaliser against Morocco sent their opponents out of the competition at the expense of Cape Verde. Cape Verde would have gone out had they not scored a last minute winner against Angola which lifted them above Morocco.