Saturday 16 December 2017

Round-up: Morata hat-trick keeps Real top

Alvaro Morata celebrates scoring Real Madrid's second goal with teammate Sergio Ramos at the Estadio Municipal de Butarque in Leganes. Photo: GETTY
Alvaro Morata celebrates scoring Real Madrid's second goal with teammate Sergio Ramos at the Estadio Municipal de Butarque in Leganes. Photo: GETTY

Independent.ie Sportsdesk

An Alvaro Morata hat-trick took Real Madrid back to the top of the La Liga table with a 4-2 victory over Leganes, following Barcelona's 3-0 win over Sevilla.

James Rodriguez opened the scoring for Real, with Morata adding a brace, but Leganes pulled two back before half-time. Morata, though, sealed the result in the second half.

Earlier, Lionel Messi scored twice as Barcelona produced a scintillating first-half display. Luis Suarez's overhead kick had given the hosts a 25th-minute lead.

Meanwhile, Gonzalo Higuain scored twice on his old Napoli hunting ground to send Juventus into the Coppa Italia final despite a 3-2 defeat to their bitter rivals. The Argentinian, returning for the second time since his acrimonious exit last year and booed throughout, didn't celebrate his goals, which gave Juve a 5-4 aggregate win.

Celtic dropped points for only the third time in the Scottish Premier League campaign as Partick Thistle fought back to claim a 1-1 draw at Parkhead.

Scott Sinclair put the newly-crowned champions ahead but missed a penalty after Partick equalised through Ade Azeez. Still, Celtic extended their unbeaten league run to 31 matches this season.

Irish Independent

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