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Inter Milan and Barcelona top after thumping wins

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 16 Sep 2023

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Henrikh Mkhitaryan’s double helped Inter Milan remain unbeaten in Serie A with a 5-1 thrashing of bitter rivals AC Milan.

They got off to the perfect start in the Milan derby, going ahead through Mkhitaryan before extending their advantage when Marcus Thuram hit a stunning strike into the top corner.

Rafael Leao gave Milan some hope with a quick finish after the break, but Inter cruised to victory when Mkhitaryan’s second was followed by Hakan Calhanoglu’s penalty and Davide Frattesi’s last-minute strike.

The win ensures Inter remain top of the table and are two points clear of Juventus, who beat Lazio 3-1 earlier in the day through Dusan Vlahovic’s brace.

The Serbia striker and Federico Chiesa gave Juve the lead and though Luis Alberto pulled one back for the visitors, Vlahovic put the game to bed.

Reigning Scudetto champions Napoli were forced to come from behind to snatch a draw with Genoa.

Goals from Mattia Bani and Mateo Retegui looked set to seal a historic victory for the home side, but substitute Giacomo Raspadori and Matteo Politano struck in the last 15 minutes to earn a point.

Barcelona moved to the top of the La Liga table after hammering Real Betis 5-0.

Joao Felix opened his account for the club with his first goal since arriving on loan from Atletico Madrid at the start of the month and Robert Lewandowski doubled the lead going into the break.

Ferran Torres and substitute Raphinha also got on the scoresheet before Joao Cancelo rounded off a dominant evening for Barca.

Athletic Bilbao are third in the table after beating Cadiz 3-0 and Mallorca beat Celta Vigo 1-0, while Valencia stunned Atletico Madrid to hand them their first defeat in the league.

Hugo Duro scored twice and Javi Guerra rounded off a 3-0 win to take Valencia fifth and Diego Simeone’s side will be hoping to bounce back against Lazio in the Champions League on Tuesday before their derby against Real Madrid next weekend.

Mats Hummels was at the double for Borussia Dortmund as they struck late to earn a 4-2 win against Freiburg in the Bundesliga.

The veteran centre-half opened the scoring in the 11th minute before Lucas Holer and Nicolas Hofler both scored in quick succession to give Freiburg the lead at half-time.

Donyell Malen levelled the score on the hour mark, but Freiburg were reduced to 10 men with nine minutes to go when Hofler was sent off, allowing Hummels and Marco Reus to capitalise with two goals in two minutes at the death.

Goals from David Raum, Lois Openda and Xavi Simons helped Leipzig earn a third straight league victory, beating Augsburg 3-0.

Three points sees them move into third in the table where they are tied on nine points with Wolfsburg, who came from behind to beat Union Berlin 2-1 through Joakim Maehle’s winner.

Hoffenheim and Stuttgart also have nine points after 3-1 wins against Koln and Mainz respectively, while Eintracht Frankfurt were forced to settle for a 1-1 draw against VFL Bochum.

Ibrahim Salah’s 89th-minute goal helped Rennes come from behind to salvage a 2-2 draw with Lille in Ligue 1.

Seventeen-year-old Leny Yoro and Bafode Diakite gave Lille the advantage before Lorenz Assignon pulled one back with 16 minutes of normal time to play and Salah snatched a point at the death.

Metz sit between both sides in sixth after beating struggling Lens 1-0 in Saturday’s other fixture.

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