Wednesday 22 November 2017

Madrid and Barca held

CESC FABREGAS became the first player in the club's history to score four goals in his first four games, but Barcelona could only manage a 2-2 draw against Valencia in La Liga last night.

The former Arsenal midfielder netted 13 minutes from time, however, given the quality of the home side's display this was a point gained for Barcelona after last weekend's 8-0 drubbing of Osasuna.

Real Madrid were once again frustrated as they drew 0-0 with Racing Santander, having been beaten 1-0 by Levante last weekend.

"This is two matches now without winning against opponents who, to be honest, do not compete with us," said goalkeeper Iker Casillas.

In Italy, Inter Milan sacked coach Gian Piero Gasperini yesterday, hours after a dismal display by the 2010 European champions when they lost 3-1 at promoted Novara.

On the pitch last night, AC Milan could only manage a 1-1 draw against Udinese to leave them with just two points from their opening three games.

•Ireland are up two places to 29th in the FIFA world rankings after back-to-back draws in the Euro 2012 qualifiers. Giovanni Trapattoni's men have risen above the USA and Colombia, with South Korea and Turkey just above them after their scoreless draws against Slovakia and Russia.

Spain are No 1 again having leapfrogged Holland, while England have fallen from fourth to eighth.

Irish Independent

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