Cardiff City 0-3 Arsenal: Aaron Ramsey fantastic against his old side (video)

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Arsenal remain top of the table after their 3-0 victory over Cardiff, pulling seven points clear of Liverpool and Chelsea, both who play tomorrow.

Right from the start, it looked as though there’d be no chance for Cardiff. It took just a minute for Jack Wilshere to hit the woodwork, jumping on to a ball from Aaron Ramsey and letting fly from the edge of the area. But Cardiff didn’t let it get them down, with the Bluebirds grabbing a great chance ten minutes in. Kévin Théophile-Catherine got away down the right and sent in his cross, but Frazier Campbell’s header went just wide.

Fifteen minutes in, Olivier Giroud missed a wonderful opportunity to put his side ahead. Again it was Ramsey with the through ball, but the forward thought he was offside and stopped clean…only to look over and see there was no flag raised. Needless to say, Arsène Wenger looked none too pleased.

But the Arsenal manager couldn’t help but smile when Ramsey put his side ahead just before the half hour mark. Mesut Özil took off down the left while Ramsey timed his run perfectly in the center. The Welshman got his head to the cross and left David Marshall no chance as the ball looped into the back of the net. The whole of Cardiff City Stadium rose to its feet and, with mutual respect, Ramsey did not celebrate his goal against his former club.

The hosts weren’t quite as accommodating after the restart, however. Once again, the dangerous Ramsey was busy getting the ball into a dangerous area. He pulled back for Giroud to take a shot and, with Marshall out of position, it looked like it would be simple enough for Arsenal to double their lead. Instead, Cardiff defender Ben Turner came rushing in to rescue his side.

Shortly after, the Bluebirds very nearly managed an equalizer, with Frazier Campbell rising above Kieran Gibbs to send in a header. It was only impressive reflexes from Wojciech Szczesny that kept Cardiff out of the game — and seconds later, the Arsenal goalkeeper was back again, this time stopping a shot from Steven Caulker. The pressure continued, with Peter Whittingham’s shot blocked before Szczesny was called into action again, this time preventing a goal from Kévin Théophile-Catherine.

But it was Arsenal that had the last word, scoring two in the second half and sealing their lead at the top of the table. It was Mathieu Flamini, grabbing his first goal in his second stint with the Gunners. Özil was once again the provider, setting up the Frenchman to send it into the top right corner. Then it was Ramsey getting his second, off a lovely counter attack. Ramsey fed Theo Walcott, on moments before for Özil. Walcott looked like he had half a mind to take the shot himself, but instead returned it back to Ramsey, who had no trouble putting it in for Arsenal’s third goal.

Cardiff: Marshall, Taylor (Cornelius 87), Caulker, Turner, Whittingham, Medel, Campbell (Odemwingie 65), Kim (Noone 75), Mutch, Cowie, Theophile-Catherine

Subs not used: Lewis, Hudson, Gunnarsson, Bellamy

Arsenal: Szczesny, Sagna, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Gibbs, Arteta, Wilshere (Monreal 81), Ramsey, Ozil (Walcott 90), Cazorla (Flamini 77), Giroud

Subs not used: Fabianski, Vermaelen, Rosicky, Gnabry

Goals: Ramsey 29′, Flamini 86′, Ramsey 90′

Serie A: Ronaldo scores but Juve’s perfect start is ruined

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MILAN (AP) Cristiano Ronaldo became the first player to net 400 goals across Europe’s top five leagues.

[ MORE: What did we learn in the Premier League, Week 9? ]

It wasn’t enough on Saturday to maintain Juventus’ perfect start to the season.

Ronaldo, who has been accused of rape in a civil lawsuit in the United States, scored in the 1-1 draw against Genoa. It was his fifth Serie A goal in nine matches.

Ronaldo has 311 goals in La Liga for Real Madrid, and 84 in the English Premier League for Manchester United.

Juventus won all of its previous 10 matches across Serie A and the Champions League. Though Juve’s lead in Italy was cut to four points after Napoli won at Udinese 3-0, coach Massimiliano Allegri believed this result would help his side for arguably its toughest test yet, Manchester United on Tuesday in Ronaldo’s return to Old Trafford.

“We drifted out of the game after a good start to the second half and, instead of making it 2-0, we let them make it 1-1,” Allegri said. “This isn’t good, because it’s with matches like this that titles are lost. After 10 minutes of the second half we were already thinking about Manchester. We needed to have more focus.

“But it’s a draw that serves us well. It’ll get our feet back to earth and help us understand that, to win matches, you need sacrifice and hard work.”

[ WATCH: Messi scores, assists, breaks arm in first 16 minutes ]

Kathryn Mayorga filed a lawsuit last month in Nevada state claiming Ronaldo raped her in his Las Vegas hotel room in 2009. Police also reopened an investigation into the allegation at her request. Ronaldo had last weekend off while Juventus was idle during the international break. Normally the star of his national team, he was left off Portugal’s squad.

Less than 20 minutes in on Saturday, he scored. There was a miscommunication between Genoa goalkeeper Ionut Radu and his defender on Joao Cancelo’s cross from the left, allowing Ronaldo a simple tap-in at the far post.

Genoa’s first goal at Juventus since January 2013 came from Daniel Bessa with a header in the 67th minute.

It was a memorable first match back in charge for Ivan Juric, who returned to Genoa for his third spell as coach.


The substitutes made the difference at Udinese.

Fabian Ruiz replaced the injured Simone Verdi in the opening minutes and the midfielder scored his first Napoli goal in the 13th, curling a stunning 20-yard strike into the top right corner.

Dries Mertens doubled Napoli’s lead from the spot eight minutes from time after Udinese substitute Nicholas Opoku handled Jose Callejon’s effort.

There was still time for Marko Rog to score, just 40 seconds after coming off the bench.

Napoli visits Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League on Wednesday.

Roma fell to a surprise 2-0 defeat at home to 10-man Spal, which won at the Stadio Olimpico for the first time in Serie A in 53 years.

Roma went into the international break with four straight wins in all competitions while Spal had lost its last four.

However, the visitors took the lead shortly before halftime when Andrea Petagna converted a penalty after Manuel Lazzari was fouled by Luca Pellegrini.

Spal doubled its advantage 11 minutes after the break as Kevin Bonifazi headed in a corner at the near post.

Spal goalkeeper Vanja Milinkovic-Savic – the younger brother of Lazio midfielder Sergej – did brilliantly to fingertip Pellegrini’s effort onto the bar but swiftly went from hero to villain.

Milinkovic-Savic was booked for time-wasting and he received a second yellow card seconds later for petulantly throwing the ball away, leaving Spal with 10 men for the final 15 minutes.

However, it clung on for its first win at Roma in the top flight since 1965.

Roma hosts CSKA Moscow in the Champions League on Tuesday.

The 2 Robbies: Mourinho Muscles Up

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Robbie Mustoe and Robbie Earle on the 2-2 draw between Chelsea and Manchester United headlined by Jose Mourinho’s touchline altercation with Chelsea assistant, Marco Ianni. After the deep dive on what this result means for Man United (0:20), the gents also discuss Chelsea’s title expectations (19:30), Manchester City’s dominance (24:45) and Liverpool’s ability to be different (26:15) — but is it better? Plus, a rapid recap (30:45) on Tottenham, Cardiff and Newcastle.

Join Earle & Mustoe on The 2 Robbies Football Show, Saturdays at 5pm ET. Listen on the NBCSports Radio App and call 855-323-4622 in the U.S. for lively passionate debate.

All of the The 2 Robbies content can be accessed by clicking on this link:

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Follow them on Twitter @The2Robbies

PL Sunday preview: Streaking Everton host slumping Palace

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With only one game on the Premier League docket for Sunday, it’s a battle of mid-table teams who began the season with plans of finishing safely inside the top half of the table.

[ MORE: What did we learn in the Premier League, Week 9? ]

On one side, there’s 11th-place Everton who have won back-to-back PL games for the first time this season. On the other side, there’s 14th-place Crystal Palace who enter Sunday’s trip to Goodison Park on the back of two straight league defeats.

The Toffees spent big in the summer transfer window, but a bit of patience was required before the return on their investment was realized. Following a comprehensive demolition of Fulham three weeks ago, and a late win away to Leicester City last week, first-year Everton manager Marco Silva is increasingly pleased with the progression his side is making.

“We are looking more like a team – more compact, more solid in some moments, and staying focused during the game. It is up to us to continue in this way, getting better every time, because we have different problems on Sunday with a different opponent, too. We have to be able to find solutions to score and win the match.”

[ WATCH: Messi scores, assists, injuries arm in first 16 minutes ]

The worst part about Palace’s recent slide is the opponents who have resigned them to defeat: Bournemouth and Wolverhampton Wanderers, a pair of sides likely to finish in the bottom half come the end of the season. Even worse, Palace’s do-everything superstar Wilfried Zaha faces a late fitness test in order to be available for selection after injuring his groin while on international duty for Ivory Coast this week. Palace are winless (0W-4D-3L) in their last seven games against Everton.

INJURIES: Everton — QUESTIONABLE: Idrissa Gueye (ankle); RETURNING: Yerry Mina (foot), Andre Gomes (hamstring), James McCarthy (leg) | Crystal Palace — OUT: Christian Benteke (knee), Scott Dann (knee); DOUBTFUL: Wilfried Zaha (groin); QUESTIONABLE: Connor Wickham (calf)

WATCH: Messi scores, assists, breaks arm in first 16 minutes

AP Photo/Manu Fernandez
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UPDATE: It has been confirmed that Messi broke his right forearm and is expected to miss three weeks.

Lionel Messi lasted just 16 minutes of Barcelona’s La Liga clash with Sevilla on Saturday, but fans got their money’s worth as it was an eventful 16-minute shift from the indisputable greatest player of all time.

[ MORE: What did we learn in the Premier League, Week 9? ]

In the end, though, it could prove an incredibly costly outing for the Argentine superstar — but even more so, for his club.

Minute no. 2: Messi sets up the game’s opening goal, scored by Philippe Coutinho, with a delightful first-time pass to play his Brazilian teammate into acres of space.

Minute no. 12: Messi scores Barca’s second goal, a not-so-easy finish made to look incredibly easy from outside the penalty area.

Minute no. 16: Messi braces his fall with his right arm, injuring it (perhaps severely) in the process (WATCH HERE).

It certainly doesn’t look good for the 31-year-old, as the lower portion of his arm appeared to go one direction while the upper portion appeared to go the complete opposite. Ousmane Dembele, who is the most likely recipient of first-team minutes should Messi missed an extended period of time, replaced the Barca captain a few minutes later.