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PIX: Lecce hold Juventus; Atletico, Bayern win

Last updated on: October 27, 2019 21:49 IST

A round of Saturday's matches in Series A, La Liga and Bundesliga.

Paulo Dybala puts Juventus ahead from the penalty spot in Saturday's Serie A match against Lecce.

IMAGE: Paulo Dybala puts Juventus ahead from the penalty spot in Saturday's Serie A match against Lecce. Photograph: Ciro De Luca/Reuters

Juventus dropped points for just the second time this season in Serie A when they were held to a 1-1 draw at Lecce on Saturday.

Paulo Dybala’s penalty put the champions in front early in the second half but Lecce captain Marco Mancosu quickly replied with a spot kick of his own.

 

Juventus, who remain unbeaten in the league under Maurizio Sarri, came into the game on the back of a seven-match winning run in all competitions.

They struggled to find a breakthrough against the spirited hosts in the absence of rested star man Cristiano Ronaldo, but Sarri said he had been right to leave the forward at home.

“Ronaldo was tired both physically and mentally, so it wouldn’t have helped him to make this journey and sit there,” the coach told Sky Sport Italia.

“When a player expresses his fatigue, it was only right to give him a rest.”

It was only the second time this season that the Turin club had failed to win a league match, after they were held to a 0-0 draw by Fiorentina in September, while Lecce earned their first home point of the campaign.

Marco Mancosu scores for Lecce from the penalty spot.

IMAGE: Marco Mancosu scores for Lecce from the penalty spot. Photograph: Ciro De Luca/Reuters

Juventus remain top on 23 points after second-placed Inter blew the chance to go top when they were held to a 2-2 draw by Parma to remain one point behind the leaders.

“The fact remains, we created 10 scoring opportunities and didn’t finish them,” Sarri added.

“I think we took it a bit easy in our finishing and after we took the lead, acting almost as if it was natural we would win.”

Juventus thought they were in front after 17 minutes when Gonzalo Higuain turned in an Alex Sandro cross-shot, but the Argentina international was flagged for offside.

The visitors broke the deadlock five minutes into the second half, when Dybala fired home a penalty after a Video Assistant Referee (VAR) review showed Miralem Pjanic had been brought down just inside the box.

Lecce needed just six minutes to draw level, Matthijs de Ligt’s handball inside the area giving Mancosu the opportunity to calmly send goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny the wrong way.

Juventus forward Federico Bernardeschi did brilliantly to control a long ball and round the goalkeeper, only to fire his finish off the post.

Sociedad go level with leaders Barca after edging past Celta

Real Sociedad went level on points with La Liga leaders Barcelona after riding their luck to snatch a 1-0 win at Celta Vigo on Sunday, continuing their superb start to the campaign.

Sweden international Alexander Isak came off the bench to decide the match with nine minutes remaining, meeting a pass from Martin Odegaard with his back to goal and freeing himself from two defenders to score.

Celta forward Santi Mina missed two clear chances to give his side the lead before halftime and the match began to slip from the hosts after Pape Cheikh was sent off for a second yellow card midway through the second half.

The win takes Sociedad second with Barca on 19 points after 10 games although the Catalans have a game in hand after the ‘Clasico’ against Real Madrid, originally scheduled for Saturday, was postponed until December due to security concerns.

Atletico Madrid, who also have 19 points, are third after beating Athletic Bilbao 2-0 on Saturday.

Atletico return to winning ways

Alvaro Morata scores Atletico Madrid's second goal.

IMAGE: Alvaro Morata scores Atletico Madrid's second goal. Photograph: Susana Vera/Reuters

Atletico Madrid snapped a three-game winless streak in La Liga by beating Athletic Bilbao 2-0 at home on Saturday to move level on points with table-topping Barcelona.

Saul Niguez put injury-stricken Atletico ahead in the 28th minute while Alvaro Morata bundled the ball in from close range in the 64th to seal their first home league win for four games.

Atletico have 19 points after 10 games along with champions Barca, who have a game in hand after the ‘Clasico’ against Real Madrid was postponed until December due to security concerns.

The victory helped ease tensions at the Wanda Metropolitano after fans booed the team and especially midfielder Koke in the midweek 1-0 win over Bayer Leverkusen in the Champions League.

“Today the fans were on our side and that makes you much more up for the game from the start,” Saul told reporters. 

“We always go out looking to win and the three draws in a row (in la Liga) had left us with a bittersweet taste so it was vital that we won today.”

Atletico were without their record 126 million euro (£109 million) signing Joao Felix due to an ankle injury and first-choice central defenders Jose Gimenez and Stefan Savic, while Diego Simeone left out Diego Costa in favour of Angel Correa.

Argentine Correa has enjoyed little first team football this season and was making only his second start in the league but he played a decisive role in the victory by setting up both goals.

He used strength and pace to burst into the box and roll the ball across for Saul to strike it into the net to break the deadlock against an Athletic side who before the game had the joint-best defensive record in the league along with Atletico.

Correa then got down to the byline to send a low cross towards Morata, who only had to guide the ball into the net.

The visitors had nearly taken the lead early in the game when defender Inigo Martinez glanced a header towards the top corner but Atletico goalkeeper Jan Oblak produced an outstanding leaping save to keep the effort out.

Athletic then had a half-hearted appeal for a penalty waved away shortly after the opening goal when Iker Muniain appeared to be pushed to the ground by Saul.

Lewandowski on target again as Bayern go back on top

Robert Lewandowski

IMAGE: Robert Lewandowski celebrates scoring Bayern Munich's second goal. Photograph: Michael Dalder/Reuters

Robert Lewandowski scored for a league-record ninth consecutive Bundesliga match as Bayern Munich scraped past promoted Union Berlin 2-1 on Saturday to reclaim top spot in the league.

Lewandowski, who has scored in every competitive game in the league, Champions League and German Cup this season for a total of 19 goals, netted his 13th league goal eight minutes after the restart for his new Bundesliga record.

He had previously shared the record with former Borussia Dortmund striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who scored in the first eight league games.

Benjamin Pavard volleyed in from 17 metres to put the hosts ahead in the 13th minute but the rest of the half was far less entertaining with Bayern again struggling for ideas and the visitors putting up a fight.

Bayern keeper Manuel Neuer did well to save a penalty three minutes later as the hosts battled for their first clean sheet after conceding two goals in each of their last five matches in all competitions.

But Neuer was beaten by Sebastian Polter in a second spot kick in the 85th minute after the striker was brought down by Pavard.

The Bavarians were again far from convincing but thanks to Lewandowski’s scoring prowess they moved up to top spot on 18 points, one ahead of Freiburg, who stunned RB Leipzig 2-1 with both teams scoring a goal in stoppage time.

Borussia Dortmund are on 16 after settling their Ruhr valley derby with Schalke 04 with a goalless draw. Schalke are on 15.

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