La Liga and Serie A roundup: Ronaldo keeps scoring, Juve bags seven

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Catch up on all of this weekend’s action from Spain and Italy’s top flights.

La Liga

Real Madrid 5-1 Rayo

Gareth Bale returned from injury for Real and it only took the Welshman nine minutes to get on the scoresheet. Goals from Ramos, Kroos, Benzema and, you guessed it, Ronaldo, helped keep Real at the top of the table. Ronaldo goalscoring update: 18 in 10 La Liga matches.

Almeria 1-2 Barcelona

Down 1-0 at the half, Neymar and Luis Suarez came on as substitutes and helped Barcelona earn a win after losing successive matches in La Liga. Neymar and Jordi Alba tallied for Barca as Suarez provided the assist on both goals. Lionel Messi hit the woodwork twice as he remains two goals from the all-time La Liga goalscoring record.

[ HIGHLIGHTS: Suarez helps assist Barca to victory ]

Real Sociedad 2-1 Atletico Madrid

A late goal from Imanol Agirrretxe helped Real Sociedad take three points from Atletico. Real Sociedad played against ten-men for nearly a whole half after Guillherme Siqueira was sent off for Atletico in the 50th minute after earning his second yellow card. A win for Atletico would have put them second on the table as they now sit in fourth, four points behind Real Madrid.

Around La Liga:
Cordoba 0-0 Deportivo
Getafe 0-0 Elche
Celta Vigo 0-0 Granada
Malaga 2-1 Eibar
Sevilla 1-1 Levante
Espanyol 1-1 Villareal
Valencia 0-0 Athletic

Serie A

source: Getty Images
Carlos Tevez scored twice for Juventus in a route against Parma.

Juventus 7-0 Parma

In a matchup between first-place and last-place, Juventus showed why they are league leaders with a 7-0 thrashing over Parma. Fernando Llorente, Alvaro Morata and Carlos Tevez all scored twice for Juve, while Stephan Lichsteiner also got his name on the scoresheet. The match was highlighted by Tevez’s brilliant individual effort to score, taking the ball from midfield on a blazing run, beating the entire Parma defense before slotting it home.

[ WATCH: Carlos Tevez scores wonder goal against Parma ]

Sampdoria 2-2 Milan

AC Milan remains winless in their last four league matches as they needed a Jeremy Menez penalty kick to earn a draw at fourth-place Sampdoria. Sampdoria has only lost once this season and have relied on a stingy defense that has only conceded eight goals in eleven games.

Inter Milan 2-2 Verona

A brace from Mauro Icardi helped ten-men Inter earn a draw against Verona. Just minutes after Icardi put Inter up 2-1, Gary Medel was sent off for a handball in the box, his second yellow of the match. Luca Toni stepped up to the spot only to see his penalty saved by Inter keeper Samir Handanovic. Verona continued to press until finally scoring an equalizer in the 89th minute to take a point from the San Siro.

Around La Liga:

Sassuolo 0-0 Atalanta
Cagliari 1-1 Genoa
Chievo 2-1 Cesena
Palermo 1-1 Udinese
Fiorentina 0-1 Napoli
Empoli 2-1 Lazio
Roma 3-0 Torino

Chelsea signs Tomori to new 5-year deal

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Chelsea center back Fikayo Tomori earned a new five-year contract with the club.

The 21-year-old has a goal and an assist in 16 matches across all competitions, though he’s spent the past two Premier League outings on the bench.

[ MORE: Premier League schedule ]

Tomori joined Chelsea at age 7, and made his Premier League debut in the 2016 season finale versus Leicester City.

He averages 2.3 tackles per game, with 1.7 interceptions, and 2.6 clearances in Premier League action this season.

From ChelseaFC.com:

“The club has been so good to me, looking after and developing me during that time into the player and the person I am today. It’s a dream come true to sign a new five-year contract. I’m really happy the club have shown this faith in me and I’m just excited to carry on.”

The 21-year-old Tomori became a full England international after loan stints to Brighton and Hove Albion, Hull City, and Derby County. The latter stop found him under Frank Lampard, which certainly didn’t hurt his opportunity to shine at the parent club this season.

Chelsea has four strong, young center backs in Tomori, Kurt Zouma (25), Andreas Christensen (23), and Antonio Rudiger (26). Christensen and Rudiger are signed through the 2021/22 season, while Zouma’s deal goes one season longer than the duo.

Jota takes super sub to new level in Wolves win

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Sometimes the phrase “game changer” is used a bit too loosely, but there’s no debating Diogo Jota fit the bill to a ‘t’ on Thursday.

Wolves scored four times in 11 minutes, three coming courtesy Jota, as the Premier League side buried Besiktas 4-0 in Europa League play on Thursday.

Jota entered in the 56th minute, scored in the 57th, and completed his hat trick in the 68th.

[ MORE: Who can Wolves draw in UEL? ]

Nuno Espirito Santo‘s men had already clinched a place in the knockout rounds before the match day, and finish one point below Braga in Group K.

Jota has five goals in five days after scoring twice against Brighton on Sunday. The 23-year-old had an up-and-down season to start but has been mostly good over the past half-dozen games.

He has 37 goals in 107 matches with Wolves, including nine in all competitions this season. He scored nine times last season after a 17-goal campaign in the Championship.

Leander Dendoncker had Wolves’ other goal, with the day’s assists going to Oskar Buur, Joao Moutinho, and Pedro Neto.

 

Who can Premier League clubs draw in Europa League?

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Group winners Arsenal and Manchester United will avoid a loaded batch of seeded teams, while runners-up Wolves can draw a bevy of powerful teams in the Europa League Round of 32.

Wolves manager Nuno Espirito Santo can find himself drawn against former club Porto, but also could have to match wits with Ajax’s Erik ten Hag, Inter Milan’s Antonio Conte, or Red Bull Salzburg’s Jesse Marsch.

[ MORE: Man Utd pounds AZ ]

Speaking of Marsch, the Salzburg boss could go from meeting Liverpool to squaring off with Steven Gerrard and Rangers.

Gerrard could also, of course, go up against hated playing days’ rival Manchester United.

Seeded teams
Ajax
Arsenal
Basel
Benfica
Braga
Celtic
Espanyol
Gent
Inter Milan
Istanbul Basaksehir
LASK
Malmo
Manchester United
Porto
Red Bull Salzburg
Sevilla

Unseeded teams
APOEL Nicosia
AZ Alkmaar
Bayer Leverkusen
Club Brugge
Copenhagen
CFR Cluj
Eintracht Frankfurt
Ludogorets Razgrad
Olympiacos
Rangers
Roma
Wolfsburg
Wolves
Shakhtar Donetsk
Sporting Lisbon

Who can Premier League teams draw in the Round of 32?

Arsenal: APOEL Nicosia, AZ Alkmaar, Bayer Leverkusen, Club Brugge, Copenhagen, CFR Cluj, Ludogorets Razgrad, Olympiacos, Rangers, Roma, Wolfsburg, Shakhtar Donetsk, Sporting Lisbon

Manchester United: APOEL Nicosia, Bayer Leverkusen, Club Brugge, Copenhagen, CFR Cluj, Eintracht Frankfurt, Ludogorets Razgrad, Olympiacos, Rangers, Roma, Wolfsburg, Shakhtar Donetsk, Sporting Lisbon

Wolves: Ajax, Basel, Benfica, Celtic, Espanyol, Gent, Inter Milan, Istanbul Basaksehir, LASK, Malmo, Porto, Red Bull Salzburg, Sevilla

Four-star Manchester United wins Europa League group

Manchester United Mata Greenwood
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Manchester United is in fine feather and showing it, smashing AZ Alkmaar in a stylish 4-0 win at Old Trafford in Europa League play on Thursday.

Juan Mata had a goal and set up two others, while Mason Greenwood scored twice after Ashley Young opened the scoring in a group-claiming victory.

[ MORE: Saka leads Arsenal comeback ]

United wins the group with 13 points, conceding just twice in six matches.

The Red Devils have won three-straight matches, as AZ joins Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspur in the loss column. Up next is a Sunday visit from Everton in the Premier League before Wednesday’s League Cup quarterfinal visit from Colchester United.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer handed starts to James Garner, Brandon Williams, and Axel Tuanzebe, bringing youngsters Ethan Laird and Tahith Chong off the bench.

Greenwood, 18, now has six goals in 22 senior appearances, while Mata, 31, gets on the score sheet for the first time this season.

For his career, the award-winning Spaniard is doing okay, though: 125 goals and 149 assists in 542 senior appearances.