With Messi at his best, Barcelona had no title rival

With Messi at his best, Barcelona had no title rival

AP
Published 5:12 p.m. ET April 27, 2019 | Updated 6:27 p.m. ET April 27, 2019

BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — Without Cristiano Ronaldo around to at least keep it interesting, a spectacular Lionel Messi had no rival to stop him from helping Barcelona successfully defend its Spanish league title.

Barcelona clinched the crown with three rounds left on Saturday, after Messi scored to beat Levante 1-0 at Camp Nou.

But this was coming for a long time. Barcelona lost only two games in 35 rounds, and opened up a significant lead early in the season.

It brushed off the only timid attempt to give it a fight, by Atletico Madrid, to secure an eighth title in 11 seasons.

Overall, Barcelona has 26 Liga trophies, second only to Real Madrid with 33.

Now Barcelona can put all of its focus on completing a rare treble of titles. It will face Liverpool in the Champions League semifinals from Wednesday, and plays Valencia in the Copa del Rey final on May 25.

How did Barcelona do it with such apparent ease?

Here are a few reasons:

MESSI

When Messi couldn’t possibly get any better, he did just that and guided Barcelona to its 10th league title of the 15 he’s disputed.

Messi will be in the running to win a record sixth Ballon d’Or for his season, after scoring 46 goals in all competitions so far and setting up a bunch more for his teammates.

The Liga’s all-time leading scorer was particularly deadly from set-pieces. Six of his 34 league goals came from direct free kicks. At one point, Messi scored from a free kick in three straight matches in late March and

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Cristiano Ronaldo Scores 600th Club Goal as Juventus Draw vs. Inter in Serie A

Cristiano Ronaldo Scores 600th Club Goal as Juventus Draw vs. Inter in Serie A
Juventus' Portuguese forward Cristiano Ronaldo (C) celebrates after scoring a goal during the Italian Serie A football match between Inter Milan and Juventus on April 27, 2019 at the San Siro stadium in Milan. (Photo by MARCO BERTORELLO / AFP)        (Photo credit should read MARCO BERTORELLO/AFP/Getty Images)

MARCO BERTORELLO/Getty Images

Cristiano Ronaldo scored his 600th club goal on Saturday as Juventus held Inter Milan to a 1-1 draw in Serie A at the San Siro.

Inter opened the scoring after just seven minutes when Juventus failed to clear a corner and the ball fell to Radja Nainggolan, who spectacularly volleyed home past goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny.

The hosts were easily the better side in the first half, but manager Massimiliano Allegri made changes after the break, bringing on Leonardo Spinazzola and Moise Kean.

The changes paid dividends when Miralem Pjanic teed up Ronaldo for the equaliser just after the hour mark.

The midfielder laid the ball off to the 34-year-old, and his low shot beat Samir Handanovic and crept inside the post for a milestone strike for the forward:

Juventus missed the best chance to win the game late on. Ronaldo sent in a low cross for substitute Matheus Pereira, but he could not convert from close range as Inter held on for a point.

   

Ramsey can’t save Juve’s slow, predictable midfield alone

Juventus lined up against Inter Milan with a midfield of Emre Can, Blaise Matuidi and Pjanic, but the trio’s performance simply highlighted the champions’ need to strengthen in the summer transfer window.

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Ronaldo scores 600th career goal

Ronaldo scores 600th career goal

Juve sealed an eighth consecutive Serie A title last weekend

Last Updated: 27/04/19 10:41pm

Cristiano Ronaldo scored his 600th career goal on Saturday

Cristiano Ronaldo scored his 600th career goal on Saturday

Cristiano Ronaldo’s 600th goal in all club competitions earned Serie A champions Juventus a 1-1 draw at the San Siro against Inter Milan.

Serie A table | Serie A results | Serie A fixtures

Juventus, who confirmed an eighth consecutive league title with victory against Fiorentina last weekend, fell behind early on to a superb volley from Radja Nainggolan.

Massimiliano Allegri’s team responded just after the hour mark when Ronaldo got his name on the score sheet.

Ronaldo's strike earned Juve a 1-1 draw with Inter Milan

Ronaldo’s strike earned Juve a 1-1 draw with Inter Milan

A neat exchange of passes with Miralem Pjanic created space on the edge of the area and the Portugal international reached his personal landmark with a low shot into the bottom corner.

Both sides had chances to win it but goalkeepers Wojciech Szczesny and Samir Handanovic were in good form and the points were shared.

Elsewhere in Serie A

Roma climbed into the final Champions League spot a

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Inter Milan 1-1 Juventus: Cristiano Ronaldo scores 600th club goal of career

Inter Milan 1-1 Juventus: Cristiano Ronaldo scores 600th club goal of career
Cristiano Ronaldo has also scored 85 goals for Portugal as well as 600 goals in his club career

Cristiano Ronaldo scored the 600th club goal of his career as Serie A champions Juventus drew with Inter Milan.

Ronaldo’s low strike, following a back-heel from team-mate Miralem Pjanic, brought Juventus level at the San Siro.

Radja Nainggolan had given the hosts the lead with a spectacular 25-yard volley after Matteo Politano’s flick.

Ronaldo has now scored 27 goals for Juventus after five for Sporting Lisbon, 118 at Ma

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Inter 1-1 Juventus: Report, Ratings & Reaction as Cristiano Ronaldo Scores 600th Club Goal

Inter 1-1 Juventus: Report, Ratings & Reaction as Cristiano Ronaldo Scores 600th Club Goal

Cristiano Ronaldo’s 600th career club goal cancelled out a stunning opener from Inter’s Radja Nainggolan, to ensure the spoils were shared in the Derby d’Italia at San Siro on Saturday evening.

In an intense opening period, Inter’s early pressure told, as Nainggolan thundered in a ferocious volley from outside the area to give the home side the lead after just seven minutes. 

MARCO BERTORELLO/GettyImages

With Juventus struggling to assert themselves on the game, both Stefan de Vrij and Mauro Icardi missed great opportunities later in the first-half thanks to a combination of some profligate finishing and backs to the wall defending. 

Their misses proved crucial as the Bianconeri began to turn up the pressure after the break, and equalised mid-way through the second-half thanks to Ronaldo, after the Portuguese star exchanged an exquisite one-two with Miralem Pjanic and fired home.

Both sides created their fair share of opportunities but failed to take advantage, and with things beginning to hot up in the race for the top four next year, Inter’s draw may just prove to haunt them come the end of the season.

Check out our breakdown of the game below. 


Inter

Key Talking Point

Having seen AS Roma close the gap to just three points earlier on Saturday, the pressure was on Luciano Spalletti’s side to respond, and to pick up some kind of positive result against Juventus. And they made the best possible start when Radja Nainggolan rolled back the years to score a thumping volley inside ten minutes. The Belgian’s wonder strike was rich reward for an excellent Inter performance in the first-half, but saw their efforts go to waste when Ronaldo equalised for the visitors.

With a visit to Napoli still to come in th

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El récord en LaLiga de Benzema que no han logrado ni Messi ni Cristiano

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El delantero galo del Real Madrid consiguió, con su agónico tanto en el día de ayer, haber anotado ante todos los rivales que se ha visto las caras en competición doméstica. Los aragoneses fueron su 34ª víctima.

Karim Benzema puede presumir de haber marcado gol contra todos los equipos a los que se ha enfrentado en partido de LaLiga desde el día de ayer. Su gol en el minuto 89, que además sirvió para certificar la victoria, fue el que le hizo alcanzar este registro. Se trata de un dato que no pudo alcanzar Cristiano Ronaldo en su día, dado que anotó ante 32 de los 33 rivales, siendo el Leganés el único afortunado que le dejó sin la oportunidad de hacerlo el 6 de noviembre de 2016, con el luso

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NAIROBI (Reuters) – The temptation to watch UEFA Champions League quarter-finals football on TV both featuring Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo backfired for some Kenya policemen when thieves raided their unmanned post and made off with weaponry.

The incident occurred on Tuesday night after the officers shut down the Kamorwon police post in a western region of Kenya and went

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Juventus celebrate 8th straight Scudetto

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Juventus vs. Empoli Live Stream: How to Watch Serie A Online

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How to watch Juventus vs. Empoli in Serie A on Saturday, March 30.

Fresh off an international break, Juventus will host Empoli in Turin on Saturday in a Serie A matchup. 

Juve will be without Cristiano Ronaldo who suffered a hamstring injury in Portugal’s 1–1 draw against Serbia on Monday. Manager Massimiliano Allegri said that Ronaldo is “a doubt for the first leg” of their Champions Leag

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