(AFP) – Feb 12, 2012
PARIS — Manchester City stayed top of the English Premier League, while Manchester United's 2-1 win over Liverpool was overshadowed by Luis Suarez's refusal to shake the hand of Patrice Evra.
Elsehwere in Europe, Real Madrid are 10 points clear of Barcelona, while AC Milan moved into pole position in Italy.
- Manchester City moved back to the top of the Premier League as Joleon Lescott's goal clinched a hard-fought 1-0 win over Aston Villa.
Roberto Mancini's side had surrendered pole position to Manchester United after their bitter rivals' 2-1 win, secured with a brace from Wayne Rooney, against Liverpool on Saturday.
Luis Suarez apologised to Patrice Evra for refusing to shake hands with the Manchester United defender in Saturday's stormy Old Trafford encounter.
But the Liverpool striker was still subjected to a strong dressing down from his club as the Reds finally tried to bring an end to the simmering race row.
It was the first time Suarez had come face to face with United's captain since being given an eight-match ban for racially abusing the Frenchman at Anfield in October.
United boss Sir Alex Ferguson had branded Suarez "a disgrace".
Harry Redknapp enjoyed a triumphant end to a tumultuous week as Tottenham thrashed Newcastle 5-0 but the pressure mounted on Chelsea manager Andre Villas-Boas after the Blues crashed 2-0 at Everton.
- Cristiano Ronaldo hit his sixth hat-trick of the season as Real Madrid took a huge step towards winning La Liga on Sunday, coming from behind to beat Levante 4-2 and open a 10-point lead over Barcelona.
Reigning champions Barcelona had crashed 3-2 to Osasuna on Saturday.
After Gustavo Cabral gave Levante a surprise early lead, Ronaldo got his first from the penalty spot a minute before the break following a handball by Vicente Iborra, who was also dismissed for his second yellow card.
Real out came out confidently for the second half and Ronaldo headed home a Gonzalo Higuain cross after 49 minutes and then completed his hat-trick with a wonderful 30-yard strike that flew into the roof of the net.
An Arouna Kone header briefly gave a glimmer of hope for Levante but Karim Benzema curled in a fourth for Real after 65 minutes.
- Stephan El Shaarawy was the match-winner as AC Milan hit back from a goal down to beat Udinese 2-1 and take over at the top of the Serie A table.
The rossoneri leapfrogged Juventus, whose game at Bologna was postponed due to snow, although they have played two games more than their rivals.
Inter Milan slumped to a fifth successive game without a win as rock-bottom Novara walked away from San Siro on Sunday with a stunning 1-0 victory.
Andrea Caracciolo scored the only goal of a game in which the hosts never really got out of second gear.
- Japan winger Shinji Kagawa hit his fourth goal in four games to keep Borussia Dortmund top with a 1-0 win over Bayer Leverkusen.
The 22-year-old Kagawa finally unpicked the packed Leverkusen defence and fired home from a tight angle on the stroke of half-time for what proved to be the winner, keeping Dortmund two points clear of second-placed Bayern Munich.
Having scored twice in the 3-1 home win over Hoffenheim a fortnight ago and in the 4-0 German Cup rout of Holstein Kiel in mid-week, Kagawa is in fine form for the German champions.
Bayern enjoyed a 2-0 win over struggling Kaiserslautern as Germany's Mario Gomez and Thomas Mueller both netted.
- Paris Saint-Germain inched a point clear in Ligue 1 following a 0-0 draw at Nice, after Ludovic Obraniak had netted a 93rd-minute winner for Bordeaux in an extraordinary 5-4 win at his former club Lille.
PSG had been bidding to reclaim top spot from Montpellier and they did so despite a lacklustre performance at the home of the league's third-bottom side.
PSG lead Montpellier, who beat Ajaccio 3-0, by a slender point prior to their encounter in Paris next weekend but champions Lille are 11 points off the pace in third.
- PSV Eindhoven and AZ Alkmaar are locked on 45 points at the top of the table, five points ahead of Heerenveen. PSV defeated De Graafschap 4-1, while Alkmaar saw off Excelsior 2-0 with Maarten Martens scoring both goals.
- Undefeated Benfica stayed five points clear of FC Porto after a 4-1 win over Nacional. Porto beat Uniao Leiria 4-0.
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