PHOTOS: European soccer's top performers of the weekend
Eden Hazard inspired Chelsea while Lionel Messi sizzled for Barcelona. Rediff.com takes a look at the other top soccer players of the weekend in Europe.
Eden Hazard was in sparkling form as Chelsea went top of the Premier League, the Belgium winger grabbing a hat-trick in a 3-0 win at home to Newcastle United.
Second-placed Arsenal were thrashed 5-1 at Liverpool while ManchesterCity, in third, were held to a goalless draw at NorwichCity.
Chelsea have 56 points with 13 matches to go, with Arsenal and ManchesterCity respectively one and two points adrift.
Liverpool swept Arsenal aside with four goals in the opening 20 minutes but seventh-placed Manchester United's woes continued as the champions were held to a 2-2 home draw by bottom club Fulham.
Image: Eden Hazard of Chelsea celebrates after scoring against Newcastle United at Stamford Bridge on Saturday.
Photographs: Mike Hewitt/Getty Images
Messi lifts Barcelona back to the top
Lionel Messi grabbed a superb double as Barcelona recovered from a shaky start to secure a 4-1 comeback win at rain-lashed Sevilla that lifted the champions back to the top of La Liga on goal difference.
Atletico Madrid crashed 2-0 at promoted Almeria while Real Madrid eased past Villarreal 4-2.
The victory by the champions at the Sanchez Pizjuan in Seville means the top three all have 57 points with 15 matches left, Barca leading Real and Atletico on goal difference.
Image: Lionel Messi of FC Barcelona celebrates scoring their second goal.
Photographs: Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images
Tevez scores a brace for Juventus
Carlos Tevez bagged two early goals for Serie A leaders Juventus but it was not enough as they drew 2-2 at Verona who hit back with second half strikes from Luca Toni and Juanito Gomez.
Juve, who have 60 points from 23 games, stayed nine clear of second-placed AS Roma who were held to a goalless draw by bitter rivals Lazio at the Stadio Olimpico.
Napoli, third with 47 points, beat Clarence Seedorf's AC Milan 3-1 to keep up their challenge for a Champions League place.
Image: Carlos Tevez of Juventus celebrates after scoring his opening goal.
Photographs: Dino Panato/Getty Images
Mandzukic sparkles for Bayern
Runaway leaders Bayern Munich remained 13 points clear after beating Nuremberg 2-0, their 12th successive Bundesliga win and their 45th without defeat.
Mario Mandzukic gave Bayern an 18th-minute lead when he hooked in David Alaba's cross and Philipp Lahm added the second from a Mandzukic pass after halftime, the captain's first goal since December 2010.
Bayern have 56 points from a possible 60 while second-placed Bayer Leverkusen have 43 after Son Heung-min earned a 1-0 win at Borussia Moenchengladbach where they have not lost for 25 years.
Borussia Dortmund, third on 39 points, thumped Werder Bremen 5-1 with double blasts from Robert Lewandowski and Henrikh Mkhitaryan.
Hamburg SV stayed in the relegation zone after they lost 3-0 at home to Hertha Berlin, their sixth successive league defeat.
Image: Mario Mandzukic of Bayern Muenchen controls the ball.
Photographs: Alex Grimm/Getty Images