While the other UEFA Champions League quarter-finalists all won, FC Bayern München and Villarreal CF suffered heavy weekend defeats on their travels with the Spanish team's misery compounded by a serious injury to Santi Cazorla.
Bayern conceded five goals away to a VfL Wolfsburg side led by former coach Felix Magath, whose team went top of the Bundesliga at the titleholders' expense. Villarreal, meanwhile, lost 3-0 at UD Almería and had Robert Pirès sent off, but that was all overshadowed by the season-ending broken leg suffered by Cazorla. There was better news on the injury front for Tuesday's opponents Arsenal FC, as fit-again Emmanuel Adebayor scored twice in a 2-0 victory against Manchester City FC, both set up by the returning Cesc Fábregas, while Chelsea FC, FC Porto and FC Barcelona also won. Liverpool FC left it late to edge past Fulham FC and keep the pressure on Premier League leaders Manchester United FC, who had 17-year-old debutant Federico Macheda to thank for a dramatic 3-2 win at home to Aston Villa FC in the only game on Sunday.
|Villarreal CF v Arsenal FC|
|UD Almería 3-0 Villarreal CF|
(Negredo 7, Piatti 20, Mané 35)
Manuel Pellegrini: "It's a repetition of the game against Real Valladolid we played before facing Manchester United [a game they also lost 3-0 before a goalless draw with the English team]. One team didn't turn up while the other was playing for points at home: [Almería] didn't miss out."
|Arsenal FC 2-0 Manchester City FC|
(Adebayor 8, 49)
Arsène Wenger: "We go from strength to strength, game to game, and that's good to see. We're happy to have [Adebayor and Fábregas] back but overall it was a great, great team performance. We are motivated and believe we [can win trophies]; the team is hungry, up for it and we have the quality – so why not?"
|Manchester United FC v FC Porto|
|Manchester United FC 3-2 Aston Villa FC|
(Ronaldo 14, 80, Macheda 90; Carew 30, Agbonlahor 58)
Sir Alex Ferguson: "We've been over this ground many times; the drama, the fans, the celebrations – you always want to see that. [At 2-2] I thought 'gamble' – winning is what the game is about and we deserved the win today because we took a chance. At this time of year teams drop points: we've had a blip but we're back today, despite having eight players missing."
Vitória SC 1-3 FC Porto
|Liverpool FC v Chelsea FC|
|Fulham FC 0-1 Liverpool FC|
Rafael Benítez: "It was an exciting game, with lots of chances against the crossbar, the post and other opportunities. At the end we had the chance to win and we're really pleased. This team has the belief that we can score, right until the end. The players will be in very good shape, in terms of confidence, for the Chelsea game."
|Newcastle United FC 0-2 Chelsea FC|
(Lampard 56, Malouda 65)
Guus Hiddink: "We said beforehand we are still in the title race and we didn't want to drop points here – and we didn't. In the second half we lost composure for ten minutes and played too many long balls, but in the main we played well. We have very big games coming up; it's the end of the season and it will be very challenging for everyone."
|FC Barcelona v FC Bayern München|
|RealValladolid CF 0-1 FC Barcelona|
Josep Guardiola: "I'm proud of my players. Valladolid played a demanding match, with a very high tempo, right on the back of a hectic ten days of international matches. My team responded well and gave their all; their attitude was excellent. Now we must rest and then start thinking about the Champions League match against Bayern."
|VfL Wolfsburg 5-1 FC Bayern München |
(Gentner 44, Džeko 63, 66, Grafite 74, 77; Toni 45)
Jürgen Klinsmann: "My feelings are anything but pleasant. Flying back to Munich will not be comfortable. We played well in the first half, but what happened in the second half deserves a lot of criticism. This defeat hurts, especially with a Champions League quarter-final against Barcelona to come on Wednesday. VfL [Wolfsburg] are now top; where we wanted to be."
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