VIDEO: Rooney’s brace leads Man United past Fulham into top spot; Johnson beauty saves City at Sunderland; Messi & Higuain hit trips; Juve & Roma held in 6-goal thrillers; Leverkusen & Ajax hit fours

Manchester United 3 – Fulham 0 (Premier League, March 14, 2010) (Longer highlights here and MOTD highlights here.) Fulham were more than competitive in the first half (highlights here) at Old Trafford although Rooney was again the most dangerous player on the pitch in the opening 45, and within thirty seconds of the restart Wayne Rooney got on the scoresheet as (just like against Milan) Nani teed up the number 10 who coolly slotted home. The Cottagers fell away after falling behind, but United had to wait until the 83rd minute for Berbatov to work his magic down the right and Wayne Rooney netted his second of the game as his phenomenal season continued. With United coasting, Park swung in a late cross from the right that Dimitar Berbatov converted with a diving header at the near post.

Alex Ferguson’s post match interview can be seen here, and Dimitar Berbatov’s here.

Sunderland 1 – Manchester City 1 (Premier League, March 14, 2010) The Black Cats struck after eight minutes against Manchester City, Kenwyne Jones providing a punishingly powerful header from Malbranque’s left-sided cross. The Citizens salvaged a last-gasp point courtesy of a splendid curling shot from Adam Johnson from the right-side of the box that flew unstoppably in the top-left corner.

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Rangers 3 – Dundee United 3 (Scottish Cup, March 14, 2010) Ibrox fell silent midway through the first half when Whittaker’s lazy pass to Wilson was cut out by Jon Daly, forward Andes Shala collected the ball and after racing into the box he slipped his shot past keeper McGregor. Rangers equalised in controversial circumstances after Miller tumbled as he rounded keeper Pernis (although replays confirmed goalie touched the ball) and from the resultant spot-kick Kris Boyd scored his 26th goal of the season. On the stroke of halftime Kris Boyd won Rangers’ second penalty of the half and the striker dusted himself down to net his 27th goal of the campaign. Minutes after the restart Rangers opened up a 2-goal lead as Davies strode upfield before laying the ball off to Nacho Novo on the right and the striker drilled in number three. Dundee Utd got themselves back into the cup tie in the 63rd minute when Morgaro Gomis powerful strike was headed into his own net by Steven Whittaker as he attempted to head clear. Four minutes from time United grabbed an equaliser when Mihael Kovacevic nodded home his first goal of the season after Shala had hit the bar from a corner.

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Valladolid 1 – Real Madrid 4 (La Liga, March 14, 2010) Cristiano Ronaldo cracked home a trademark tomahawk free-kick after 27 minutes at Valladolid. Real doubled their lead just before the interval when Gonzalo Higuain volleyed home a Van der Vaart inswinging free-kick from 3-yards out. Los Blancos went 3-up in the 52nd minute when Alonso’s straight-forward free-kick upfield was flicked on by Ronaldo to Higuain and the Argentine confidently notched his second of the game. The hosts briefly got themselves back in the game when Raul Albiol managed to turn the ball into his own net, Gonzalo Higuain soon restored Real’s 3-goal cushion with his hat-trick goal mopping up a parried shot from Ronaldo.

Barcelona 3 – Valencia 0 (La Liga, March 14, 2010) After 56 minutes Lionel Messi danced into the Valencia box and scored yet another high class individual goal to put Barcelona in front. With just under ten minutes remaining Lionel Messi bagged his second receiving a lofted pass from Henry and firing past Cesar. Seconds later the diminutive Argentine completed his hat-trick to cap yet another fine individual display. (Second and third goals here.)

Villarreal 2 – Xerez 0 (La Liga, March 14, 2010) Ariel Ibagaza slipped the ball through to Joseba Llorente who finished clinically from 12 yards past Chema in the visiting goal. Marcos Senna, Ibagaza and Cani all threatened to extend the lead, but it took until the 90th minute for Damian Escudero to neatly round off the win with a slick left-footed shot.

Almeria 1 – Malaga 0 (La Liga, March 14, 2010) Fernando Soriano pounced on a Santiago Acasiete knock-down to rifle the ball home and leave Malaga reeling, and despite the Andalusian’s best efforts, they could not fight their way back into the contest, registering their third successive defeat in La Liga.

Tenerife 4 – Espanyol 1 (La Liga, March 14, 2010) Richi gave the Canary Islanders the lead before Nino doubled their advantage and, while Espanyol got back into the game through Joan Verdu 20 minutes from time, Alejandro Alfaro and Nino later rounded off a deserved victory in the closing stages.

Racing Santander 0 – Real Zaragoza 0 (La Liga, March 14, 2010) Racing’s search for a first home league win since early January continues after they were held to a goalless draw by relegation rivals Zaragoza.

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AC Milan 1 – Chievo 0 (Serie A, March 14, 2010) Milan got back on the winning trail and closed the gap on rivals Inter thanks to Clarence Seedorf’s late late winner, the Dutchman stealing the headlines with an unstoppable arrowed shot that ripped from right into the left hand top corner. The big news to come out the match from an English perspective was the achilles tendon injury to David Beckham that threatens his career and will see him miss the World Cup.

Juventus 3 – Siena 3 (Serie A, March 14, 2010) Juve got off to an incredible start against relegation-threatened Siena, Alex Del Piero finding the net from close ranger after two minutes before Del Piero finished off a fine team move in the 9th minute. Sixty seconds later Antonio Candreva crashed home a brilliant third for the Bianconeri, before Massimo Maccarone pulled Siena back into the match in the 16th minute when he ran past the home defence and slotted his shot into the far corner. After a blistering start to the first half, lightning struck twice at the start of the second as Abdelkader Ghezzal was in the right place to score a rebound and bring Siena firmly back in the match. In the 74th minute Siena tied the match 3-all when Algerian international Abdelkader Ghezzal netted his second of the game from the penalty spot.

Livorno 3 – Roma 3 (Serie A, March 14, 2010) Cristiano Lucarelli opened when he beat the Roma offside trap after nine minutes, only for Simone Perotta to level proceedings straight from the kick off. Luca Toni then headed the visitors into the lead from Perotta’s flick-on, but Livorno hit back as Lucarelli beat the offside trap and keeper Sergio and rolled the ball into the empty net. Livorno again switched off from the restart and were punished when David Pizarro drove past Rubinho from Perrotta’s cut back. It could have been worse for Livorno when Pizarro missed a penalty before the break, but the final word went to Lucarelli when he sent Sergio the wrong way from the spot to earn the Amaranto a thrilling draw.

Lazio 0 – Bari 2 (Serie A, March 14, 2010) Lazio’s Serie A future fell into a deeper crisis after a home defeat to Bari who opened through Sergio Almiron early in the second half. Bari’s second was special as forward Edgar Alvarez picked up the ball on the halfway-line, race 40-yards before rounding the keeper and producing a fine finish from an acute angle.

Udinese 3 – Palermo 2 (Serie A, March 14, 2010) Udinese climbed away from the relegation zone after Antonio Floro Flores scored twice, once in each half, and Kwadwo Asamoah netted the third as the Bianconeri collected all three points in front of their own supporters. Fabio Simplicio and Edinson Cavani were on target for the visitors.

Bologna 1 – Sampdoria 1 (Serie A, March 14, 2010) Samp took the lead in the 86th minute when Reto Ziegler whipped in a cross that Daniele Gastaldello turned in from close range, but in the dying seconds of the game the hosts equalised through Andrea Raggi.

Genoa 5 – Cagliari 3 (Serie A, March 14, 2010) Daniele Dessena put Cagliari ahead in the 16th minute, but Alberto Zapater equalised from the penalty spot in the 36th minute after the home side had already been denied four times by the woodwork. Rodrigo Palacio put Genoa ahead in the 39th minute, but their joy was short lived as Daniele Conti equalised immediately. Giuseppe Sculli restored Genoa’s advantage and Marco Rossi added a fourth before the break. Alessandro Matri scored the second penalty of the match in the 55th minute to make things interesting, but Omar Milanetto sealed Genoa’s win just four minutes later.

Parma 1 – Atalanta 0 (Serie A, March 14, 2010) Atalanta slipped closer to the Serie A relegation trapdoor as they went down at Parma. Substitute Valeri Bojinov’s goal 19 minutes from time decided the contest, while Atalanta added to their woes just two minutes later as Cristiano Doni was sent off for dissent.

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Bayer Leverkusen 4 – Hamburg 2 (Bundesliga, March 14, 2010) Leading scorer Stefan Kiessling put Leverkusen in front in the 22nd minute the striker ran on from near the half-way line to slot the ball past Frank Rost in goal. Hamburg levelled 11 minutes later thanks to a mistake by keeper Adler fluffed a punched clearance and Ze Roberto scored from the edge of the box. Eren Derdiyok put the home side back in front 10 minutes after the break when he rose unmarked to head a ball floated forward into the area from Schwaab. and Kiessling grabbed his second when he headed powerfully in from close range. Hamburg were briefly back in the game when David Rozehnal bundled the ball over from a free-kick seven minutes from time, but Bayer killed the match and revived their title slim hopes a minute later when Gonzalo Castro smashed the ball home on a counter-attack.

Hoffenheim  0 – Werder Bremen 1 (Bundesliga, March 14, 2010) Claudio Pizarro marked his 100th game for Werder by hitting a late winner at Hoffenheim, the Peru striker collecting a Jensen pass nine minutes from time and neatly lobbing Hildebrand.

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Lille 1 – Grenoble 0 (Ligue 1, March 14, 2010) Bostjan Cesar’s own goal at the start of the second half proved the difference with Les Dogues unable to add to their tally against the division’s bottom side.

Toulouse 1 – Marseille 1 (Ligue 1, March 14, 2010) Brandao gave the visitors the lead after half an hour when he turned Mathieu Valbuena corner into the net from close range. But just nine minutes later Paulo Machado fired a right footed thunderbolt into the top corner after good work from Colin Kazim-Richards.

Valenciennes 0 – Rennes 2 (Ligue 1, March 14, 2010) Sylvain Marveaux opened the scoring in the 26th minute and Asamoah Gyan made it two in the 39th minute. The hosts’ miserable afternoon was complete when Siaka Tiene was sent off 12 minutes from time.

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Nacional 0 – Benfica 1 (Liga Sagres, March 14, 2010) Oscar Cardozo scored the only goal as Benfica went three points clear at the top.

Sporting Lisbon 3 – Vitoria Guimaraes 1 (Liga Sagres, March 14, 2010) Sporting Lisbon scored three times in the first 20 minutes through Leandro Grimi, Liedson and Carlos Saleiro in their 3-1 win over Guimaraes. The visitors got a consolation through Valdomiro after 67 minutes.

Leixoes 1 – Vitoria Setubal 2 (Liga Sagres, March 14, 2010) Vitoria Setubal did their chances of avoiding relegation a power of good with an away win to fellow strugglers Leixoes. Joao Paulo gave the home side the lead in the first half but Sandro Mendes (43) and Ladji Keita (79) wrapped up the points for Vitoria, who had Mamdou Djikine sent off in the final minutes.

Olhanense 1 – Belenenses 3 (Liga Sagres, March 14, 2010) Bottom side Belenenses won 3-1 away to Olhanense with two goals from Rodrigo Lima and a third by Sergio Barge. Miguel Angelo scored for the home side.

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Ajax 4 – PSV 1 (Eredivisie, March 14, 2010) Ajax took the lead in the big match against PSV when Siem de Jong was on hand to turn in Suarez’s effort from an 11th minute corner. The ArenA was rocking just before the break when a cheeky backheel from Pantelic in the left corner found Urby Emanuelson, and the Edgar Davids clone raced into the box and unleashed a right-foot beauty into the top corner. Ajax killed the match and opened up the title race when Marko Pantelic was the beneficiary after PSV lost the ball on the edge of their own area. Balazs Dzsudzsak netted a consolation for PSV from the spot before Luis Suarez continued his amazing scoring record this season by adding a fourth in injury time.

Feyenoord 1 – Heracles 1 (Eredivisie, March 14, 2010) The goals arrived in a thrilling final 8 minutes, beginning when Darl Douglas set up Everton and the Brazilian striker beat the Feyenoord goalie with a superbly placed shot. Feyenoord grabbed a last minute leveller when defender Ron Vlaar scored with a stunning long range strike well into stoppage time to help Feyenoord to a draw.

Willem II 3 – Sparta 1 (Eredivisie, March 14, 2010) Frank Demouge gave Willem the lead just four minutes in before Dele Adeleye put through his own net to double their advantage before the break. The win was sealed on the hour with Stefan Nijland scoring from the penalty spot. Sparta claimed a consolation late on through Rydell Poepon. The win means Willem move up one place to 16th and just one point off Vitesse, while Sparta are just a point further ahead.

Vitesse 0 – SC Heerenveen 1 (Eredivisie, March 14, 2010) Vitesse remain just one point, and one place, above the drop zone after they lost at home to Heerenveen. The Frisians took the win courtesy of Roy Beerens’ goal just seven minutes from time.

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Anderlecht 2 – Genk 0 (Jupiler League, March 14, 2010) Anderlecht remain 12 points clear at the top of the Belgian Jupiler League after a 2-0 win over Genk with goals from Romelu Lukaku and Tom De Sutter, the latter a minute after he came on as a late substitute.

Zulte-Waregem 1 – Standard Liege 1 (Jupiler League, March 14, 2010)

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Spartak Moscow 0 – Dynamo Moscow 1 (Russian Premier League, March 14, 2010) The first moscow derby of the season went Dynamo’s way when Igor Semshov broke the home offside trap to score in the 72nd minute.

Rubin Kazan 2 – Lokomotiv Moscow 0 (Russian Premier League, March 14, 2010) Rubin started the defense of their league title with a dramatic late win over Lokomotiv, Andrey Gorbanets broke the deadlock with a 87th minute and Aleksandr Bukharov wrapped up the points in injury time.

Sibir Novosibirsk 0 – Terek Grozny 2 (Russian Premier League, March 14, 2010) Goals in each half from Andrey Kobenko (a cute chip) and Shamil Asildarov saw newbees Sibir fall to a home defeat.

Alania Vladikavkaz 1 – Saturn 1 (Russian Premier League, March 14, 2010) Aleksei Ivanov rifled a shot in Alania top corner after just 10 minutes, but Saturn were soon pegged back when Georgi Bazaev saw his 25-yard effort take a wicked deflection and loop over the helpless visiting keeper.

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Bursaspor 2 – Manisaspor 0 (Super Lig, March 14, 2010) Bursaspor’s unlikely title challenge stayed on course with a comfortable victory over Manisaspor, Dimitar Ivankov opened with a penalty on the stroke of halftime and Omer Erdogan’s last minute header sealed the three points.

Kayserispor 1 – Eskisehirspor 2 (Super Lig, March 14, 2010)

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Aris 2 – PAOK 0 (Greek Super League, March 14, 2010) Pana’s closest challengers, PAOK Salonika, suffered a blow as they were beaten 2-0 at local rivals Aris Salonika as Javier Campora grabbed both goals. PAOK also had Miroslaw Sznaucner and Adelino Vieirinhasent off late on.

Asteras 0 – Panathinaikos 1 (Greek Super League, March 14, 2010) Panathinaikos extended its lead at the top of the Greek league to five points on Sunday after defender Loucas Vyntra scored the winner in a narrow victory at Asteras.

Levadiakos 2 – Xanthi 1 (Greek Super League, March 14, 2010) Mugurel Bugo put Xanthi in a 42nd minute lead, but the game then turned nasty after the break as Mauro Poy and Papadimitriou saw red for the visitors while Giannis Alexiou was dismissed for the hosts. The 10-men prevailed in dramatic circumstances as Giorgos Barkoglou netted twice in the final two minutes.

Panthrakikos 0 – Panionios 1 (Greek Super League, March 14, 2010) Bosko Balaban and Lefteris Sakellariou left each side with 10-men just before the hour mark, and Panionios coped the better as Martin Latka bagged a 67th minute winner.

Larissa 1 – Ergotelis 0 (Greek Super League, March 14, 2010) A super solo goal from Romeu in the 12th minute settled the match.

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Galatasaray 3 – Ankaragucu 0 (Super Lig, March 14, 2010) Jo fired the home side in front in just the fourth minute and Kader Keita then extended the lead in the 37th minute with his fourth goal of the season to put the hosts firmly in control. The visitors had some chances in the second half, but they never broke through before Milan Baros could make it 3-0 just before the final whistle.

Antalyaspor 3 – Sivasspor 0 (Super Lig, March 14, 2010) Sivasspor were their own worst enemies at Antalyaspor gifting the visitors their opener and last goals scored by Necati Ates and Serge Djiehoua, while Veysel Cihan got the second. 

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AIK Stockholm 0 – Mjallby 0 (Allsvenskan, March 14, 2010) Swedish champions AIK failed to impress in their first match of the 2010 season, being held to a goalless draw by Mjallby.

Kalmar 0 – IFK Gothenburg 3 (Allsvenskan, March 13, 2010) Tobias Hysen scored twice for the visitors and Icelandic defender Hjalmar Jonsson finished it off with a third in the 65th minute.

Helsingborg 1 – Brommapojkarna 0 (Allsvenskan, March 14, 2010) Brommapojkarna came unstuck in Helsingborg despite stout resistance following a hilarious sending off for their goalkeeper Kristoffer Nordfeldt.

Hacken 2 – Djurgarden 1 (Allsvenskan, March 14, 2010)

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Molde 1 – Rosenborg 2 (Tippeligaen, March 14, 2010) Molde conceded two scrappy goals which rendered Bjorn Runstrom’s debut-opener largely pointless. The 2-1 win puts RBK firmly in the driving-seat, but with 29 games yet to play a number of things could still go wrong for the reigning champions.

Start 2 – Sandefjord 0 (Tippeligaen, March 14, 2010) Start also picked up a comfortable three points against a Sandefjord-side that never really looked capable of troubling the hosts.

Aalesund 3 – Lillestrom 0 (Tippeligaen, March 14, 2010)

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FC Copenhagen 2 – Brondby 0 (SAS Ligaen, March 14, 2010) Second half goals from William Kvist and Martin Vingaard sealed Brondby’s fate, however the match was marred by fan violence after the fill time whistle in which at least 27 people were arrested after clashes with police.

FC Midtjylland 2 – Aalborg BK 0 (SAS Ligaen, March 14, 2010)

Randers 0 – Nordsjaelland 0 (SAS Ligaen, March 14, 2010)

Esbjerg 2 – HB Koge 1 (SAS Ligaen, March 14, 2010) Esbjerg managed to keep its hopes for a league title alive with an unimpressive 2-1 win over bottom dweller HB Koge.

OB Odense 1 – SonderjyskE 1 (SAS Ligaen, March 13, 2010) Odense lost its share of first place, drawing with Sonderjyske.

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Rapid Vienna 2 – Austria Vienna 0 (T-Mobile Bundesliga, March 14, 2010) Rapid Vienna captain Steffen Hofmann opened from the penalty spot in the 68th minute, while Croat striker Nikica Jelavic doubled the score eight minutes later. Milenko Acimovic saw red for Austria at the death for screaming at the linesman.

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Shakhtar Donetsk 2 – Metalist Kharkiv 1 (Ukrainian Premier League, March 14, 2010) Goals in each half from Lewandowski and Costa earned Shakhtar the points.

Zakarpattya 2 – Zarya 1 (Ukrainian Premier League, March 14, 2010)

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Young Boys 1 – Sion 0 (Swiss Super League, March 14, 2010) Four minutes after coming off the bench, Mauro Lustrinelli struck a 79th minute winner as Young Boys claimed a 1-0 win over FC Sion.

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Urawa Red Diamonds 1 – FC Tokyo 0 (J-League, March 14, 2010) Robson Ponte claimed all three points for Urawa converting a first half penalty.

Kyoto Sanga 1 – Kashima Antlers 1 (J-League, March 14, 2010) Kashima looked to be on course to record a second win of the fledgling season and move level with Vegalta Sendai and Kawasaki Frontale at the top of the table after Takuya Nozawa broke the deadlock in the 63rd minute. But Diego struck to earn the hosts their first point from two games.

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Toluca 2 – Cruz Azul 3 (Mexican Premier League, March 14, 2010) Emanuel Villa scored two goals and Maxi Biancucchi set up two and scored another as Cruz Azul overcame a second-half deficit to beat Toluca 3-2.

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Corinthians 2 – Santo Andre 1 (Paulista, March 14, 2010) Dentinho and Roberto Carlos, with a blockbuster, were on target for Corinthians.

Santos 3 – Palmeiras 4 (Paulista, March 14, 2010) Santos led 2-0 after Para scored in the 10th minute and 18-year-old Neymar scored in the 30th. Robert scored twice in two minutes to level for Palmeiras. He headed in a free kick from Cleiton Xavier in the 41st minute, then drove in a left-foot shot from inside the area. Diego Souza’s header from Pierre’s free-kick in the 56th minute put Palmeiras ahead 3-2 before Santos rallied. Robinho gave a perfect pass to Paulo Henrique, who crossed for Madson to score from the left in the 80th. Robert fired in a right-foot shot from well outside the area for the winner in the 87th minute after a counter-attack by Palmeiras.

Sao Paulo 2 – Rio Branco 1 (Paulista, March 14, 2010)

Flamengo 1 – Vasco 0 (Carioca, March 14, 2010) Adriano converted a penalty in the 46th to give Flamengo a 1-0 win over crosstown rival Vasco.

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Racing Club 0 – Argentinos Juniors 1 (Clausura, March 14, 2010) Nicolas Pavlovich got the only goal in the 78th minute.

Tigre 3 – Boca Juniors 0 (Clausura, March 14, 2010) A hat-trick from Carlos Luna, who scored in the 10th, 43rd and 78th minute, condemned Boca to their third defeat of the season, leaving them only three places from the foot of the table with eight points from nine games.

Rosario Central 1 – San Lorenzo 0 (Clausura, March 14, 2010) San Lorenzo played over 20 minutes with ten men and then a further 20 with just nine, but Rosario Central still left it until the 89th minute to claim a 1-0 win with Milton Caraglio getting the goal. San Lorenzo had Pablo Pintos sent off in the 48th minute and Jonathan Bottinelli followed in the 70th minute.

River Plate 2 – Huracan 0 (Clausura, March 14, 2010) A second minute own goal from Ezequiel Filipetto set River Plate on their way to a 2-0 win over Huracan. Gustavo Canales got the second 15 minutes from time.