Messi dazzled, again, Ajax beat PSV in the top-of-the-table showdown in the Eredivisie and AS Roma and Inter Milan suffered humiliating losses. European football did not disappoint this weekend. Here are some of the Things we learned in European Football: March 30-31. You can bet on European football here.
Another Messi masterclass
Words can’t fully describe how Lionel Messi has been playing in the last decade. He’s scored a ton of goals, broken a lot of records, won numerous trophies, thrilled and exasperated millions with his usual razzle-dazzle. On Saturday, in the Barcelonian Derby, the Argentine forward was at it again. He scored twice to edge Barcelona to another La Liga title. The first goal was cheeky. He lofted home a free kick after 71 minutes to give his team the lead. His second goal towards the end of the match secured the three points for the Blaugrana. The 31-year-old has now scored 22 goals in the last 15 La Liga matches while also clocking 40 in all competitions for the 10th season in a row.
Bayern’s stumble and Dortmund’s resilience
The Bundesliga title race got more interesting over the weekend. Tied on points at the top of the table, Bayern and Dortmund headed into the weekend hoping for maximum points to keep their dreams alive. However, that wasn’t to be, for the reigning champions. Dortmund needed late goals to win at home against Wolfsburg while Bayern dropped two points drawing away at Freiburg. Dortmund now have a two-point lead over the champions as the season enters a pivotal stage given the two German giants lock horns next weekend.
Roma and Inter fail to turn up at home
Serie A top-four hopefuls AS Roma and Inter Milan were humiliated over the weekend, losing their games to title challengers Napoli and another top four contenders Lazio, respectively. Claudio Ranieri’s Roma lost their second game in a row which has greatly dented their Champions League chances. Inter Milan have also been in bad form in Serie A and registered another disappointing result on Sunday, losing 1-0 at home to Lazio. That loss could be the final straw for manager Luciano Spalletti who has been under pressure in the last few months.
Ajax back in the title race
Ajax recorded a crucial 3-1 victory over their rivals PSV over the weekend to cut the lead at the top of the Eredivisie to just two points. The Champions League quarter-finalists result was remarkable given they sealed it with ten men with Noussair Mazraoui dismissed following a dangerous play in the 57th minute. Erik ten Hag’s side are right in the title mix with just seven matches left to play this season and they will look to take it down to the wire and claim their first league title since the 2013/2014 season.
Monaco back in the relegation scrap?
Monaco blew the chance to move up the table and away from the relegation zone following their disappointing 1-0 defeat at home to Caen, team which began the weekend at the bottom. The defeat disrupted their momentum after decent results in the past few matches following the reappointment of Leonardo Jardim. With eight matches left to play, Monaco now sit seven points clear from the relegation zone. However, they play Guingamp, another relegation-threatened side and this will be a good opportunity for them to climb up the table to avoid any drama at the end of the season.