Who can stop Leicester in title run-in?

Leicester’s charge towards the Premier League title is still rolling along nicely, with the downturn of form anticipated by many yet to materialise.

The Foxes are five points clear at the summit after picking up seven from their past three games.

But not only are Claudio Ranieri’s men still winning points – their nearest rivals are continuing to drop them.

Tottenham and Arsenal took points off each other after Saturday’s 2-2 draw in the north London derby.

Fourth-placed Manchester City did, however, revive their title hopes after three straight league defeats with a 4-0 thumping of Aston Villa.

Fifth-placed West Ham and Manchester United, two points behind the Hammers, also still have an outside chance.

Scores in reverse games: beat Newcastle 3-0, beat Crystal Palace 1-0, drew with Southampton 2-2, beat Sunderland 4-2, beat West Ham 2-1, beat Swansea 3-0, drew with Manchester United 1-1, beat Everton 3-2, beat Chelsea 2-1.

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Juventus extended their unbeaten run in Serie A to 18 games

As they moved three points clear at the top of the table with a 2-0 win at Atalanta.

Andrea Barzagli scored in the first half and Mario Lemina in the second as Juventus went clear of Napoli.

Juventus restored their advantage with 10 games remaining after Napoli had moved level on points with a 3-1 h ome win against Chievo on Saturday.

Atalanta remain in mid-table and are without a win in 13 games.

Juventus goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon has now gone 836 minutes of league action without conceding a goal – a new record for Serie A since three points were awarded for a win in 1994.

Another clean sheet edged him closer to the overall record of 929 minutes, set by AC Milan’s Sebastiano Rossi in 1993/94.

Juventus went ahead in the 24th minute when Barzagli seized on a header from Mario Mandzukic and finished from close range.

The visitors held on in the second half despite late pressure from the hosts before doubling their lead with four minutes remaining when substitute Lemina produced a weaving run and cool finish.

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I know what to do to get the Super Eagles flying again – Bonfrere Jo

 Bonfrere Jo believes he is ‘the right coach ‘ to return Nigeria to the back to African champion, 15 years after he was sacked as coach.

69-year-old Bonfrere previously guided Nigeria at the Nations Cup in 2000 and is keen to replace Sunday Oliseh who resigned from the post. Naijabet.com

Bonfrere, who was sacked by Nigeria in 2001 after losing a World Cup qualifier in Sierra Leone, was also assistant Super Eagles coach from 1990 to 1994 and led Nigeria’s under-23 team to gold at the Atlanta Olympics.

“I have worked in Nigeria for a long time in the past and I know what to do to get the Super Eagles flying again,”

“I love Nigeria because that is where my football mentality is most at home and I have a fantastic relationship with the people there” Bonfrere told BBC Sport.

The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) president Amaju Pinnick has said they have no plans to appoint a local coach on a permanent basis.

Current under-23 coach Samson Siasia will take charge for Nigeria’s Nations Cup qualifiers against Egypt later this month.

Bonfrere believes he is the right man to succeed Oliseh on a long-term basis.

“Apart from Stephen [Keshi], the other local coaches have not succeeded because they cannot give what they don’t have to take the team higher.

 

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Bayern maintained five-point lead over Borussia Dortmund

Bayern Munich maintained their five-point lead over second-placed Borussia Dortmund following a 0-0 draw at Westfalenstadion.

A seventh win in eight league games would have lifted Dortmund to within two points of Bayern following the champions’ shock 2-1 defeat at home to Mainz in midweek.

But Pep Guardiola’s side rarely looked like losing again.

The visitors’ Arturo Vidal was closest to a winner when he hit the bar

It was not an epic ‘Der Klassiker’ but there was still plenty of quality on show.

Both sides struggled in front of goal, with Dortmund’s lively striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang twice being denied by Manuel Neuer.

Robert Lewandowski had a quiet night, with Bayern’s best openings falling to Thomas Muller, Douglas Costa, Arjen Robben and Vidal, whose close-range volley was superbly touched onto the bar by Roman Burki.

Guardiola’s side will be the happier of the two as they maintained the status quo at the top of the table with nine games to go.

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Ronaldo claimed his fifth hat-trick of the season

Cristiano Ronaldo scored four times as Real Madrid cruised to a 7-1 win over Celta Vigo to move within a point of second-placed Atletico Madrid.

Ronaldo claimed his fifth hat-trick of the season to take his total to 39.

He struck three times in 15 minutes after the break, after Pepe had headed Real into a 1-0 half-time lead.

Iago Aspas pulled a goal back but Ronaldo completed his treble and headed in a fourth before Jese and Gareth Bale, on his comeback, scored late on.

Ronaldo’s efforts – which took him past 350 goals for Real Madrid and up to second in La Liga history with 252 – saw Real bounce back from losing to Atletico in their previous home game, a 1-0 defeat that virtually ended their hopes of catching Barcelona at the top of the table

That led to some unrest in the Bernabeu and Celta, who were unbeaten in three games in their pursuit of a place in the Europa League, should have gone ahead when ex-Liverpool striker Aspas headed against a post.

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Tottenham 2-2 Arsenal: Wenger and Pochettino pissed with draw

Pochettino was aggrieved with the 2-2 draw as Spurs lost the lead  against ten men  after Francis Coquelin’s receive  red card.

“You feel annoyed and thwarted as a result of  eleven against tenyou would like to keep that result,” said Pochettino.

Wenger felt Arsenal were up to the mark leading 1-0 before the dismissal, adding: “We have massive regrets.

 

Alexis Sanchez’s 76th-minute equaliser gave Arsenal a point after two quick goals from Toby Alderweireld and Harry Kane had put Spurs in front following Aaron Ramsey’s opener and Coquelin’s dismissal.

Pochettino added: “It is true we missed a big opportunity. It was a game that means a lot to us and the feeling is we missed a big opportunity to move forward but we are young and I was proud of my team.”

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Manchester City cannot make more mistakes if they are to win the Premier League

Manchester City lost 3-0 loss at Liverpool on Wednesday – their third league defeat in a row – and they are behind surprise leaders Leicester City by 10 points.

Title rivals Arsenal and Tottenham also lost, but city captain  Kompany said: “We can’t make any more mistakes.”

City are at home to bottom club Aston Villa this weekend, while Leicester visit Watford and Arsenal face Spurs.

“It is an awkward season,” said Kompany. “Good for the fans, but you can’t predict anything, can you?

“If there is one guarantee for this season, it is nothing is sure” he added.

City, who have a game in hand on Leicester, have now lost eight times in the league this season, while Leicester have lost just three.

The last time City lost  three match   league  in a row was in 2008.

“We will see what is happening at the weekend,” said Kompany. “We need to get the three points and maybe Leicester will drop some points.”

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AFCON QUALIFIERS – SAMSON SIASIA RELEASE INVITED PLAYER LIST

“I have absolute faith in the players. Nigeria is blessed with so many talented footballers across the world and I know that those we are inviting for this match will give everything for the six points in both matches,” said Siasia after he released a 42-man squad for the AFCON qualifiers. Naijabet“Personally, I will give everything that I have to offer for us to win both matches.”

“I want to passionately appeal to Nigerians, everybody, to show belief in the team and give us total support.

“It will not be easy, but if we stick together and present a united force to fight this battle, I believe we will triumph.”

Coach Samson Siasia has invited 22 home –based professionals and 20 overseas –based players for Nigeria’s 2017 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying double-take against the Pharaohs of Egypt this month
Eagles host the Egyptians in Kaduna on Friday, March 25 and play away in Alexandria on Tuesday, March 29.

Barcelona set 35-game unbeaten record in all competition

Barcelona broke a 27-year-old Spanish record by going 35 games unbeaten in all competitions with a 5-1 thrashing of nine-man Rayo Vallecano.

Lionel Messi scored a hat-trick – his 35th – as the hosts fell apart after Ivan Rakitic’s opener.Naijabet

Diego Llorente and Manuel Iturra were both dismissed for Rayo, whose only goal was scored by Manucho.

Luis Suarez also had a penalty saved before Arda Turan completed the rout to move Barcelona eight points clear.

Suarez’s miss from the spot means Barcelona have failed to convert half of their 18 penalties this season.

Messi has scored 33 goals this season and now has as many hat-tricks as Real Madrid rival Cristiano Ronaldo.

“I’m pleased with how the season has progressed,” said Enrique.

“There is attitude, intensity and finishing. When Barca manages to be like that, you create danger from the first minute and it’s hard to stop them.”

The win means the Blaugrana remain eight clear of Atletico at the top of the table and 12 ahead of Real Madrid. Those two teams are the only other champions of Spain since 2008-09 with a title apiece: Real in 2011-12 and Atleti in 2013-14. But the trophy will almost certainly not be returning to the capital in May and Barca’s dominance could continue for some time on this evidence.

Super Eagle gain more point in fifa ranking

Nigeria have enraptured up one place in the latest FIFA ranking for Gregorian calendar month that were declared on Thursday.
The 2013 African champions area unit currently within the 62nd spot, up from 63rd that they occupied in January.
The additionally gained four points, from 543 to 547.
Nigeria area unit still outside the highest ten in continent, in eleventh place on the continent.
The country’s last matches were at the African Nations Championship wherever they won one,thespian one and lost one before crashing out in the first stage.
Nigeria’s African Cup of  Nation qualifying opponents Egypt are unit graded 53rd with 589 points, up two places from their January position. Naija and bet

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