Liverpool's Latest Win and the Greatest World Football Moments of the Weekend
"We go again!" said Steven Gerrard in the huddle last week, referring to Liverpool's crucial visit to Norwich. Brendan Rodgers' side suffered a few scares at Carrow Road, but they left with three points and even more confidence that they can secure their first league title since 1990.
Elsewhere this weekend, Arsenal and Everton both enjoyed victories in their quest for Champions League football, Dimitar Berbatov scored a beautiful lob, Leo Messi saved Barcelona with a free kick and an incredible Rabona goal was scored in Thailand...
Jose Mourinho Lost His First Home League Game
Up until Saturday, Jose Mourinho was unbeaten in the league at Stamford Bridge, a run that extended 77 games since August 2004. Not many people would have bet on Sunderland—the worst team in the league by position—to end that streak, but that's exactly what happened.
Samuel Eto'o put the Blues ahead after 12 minutes, but Connor Wickham bagged his third goal in two games to equalise six minutes later.
The game stayed even until the 82nd minute, when referee Mike Dean judged Cesar Azpilicueta to have brought U.S. international Jozy Altidore down in the box. Fabio Borini converted the controversial penalty from the spot, gifting Sunderland an unlikely three points and allowing his parent club, Liverpool, to open up a lead at the top of the Premier League.
Sunderland have now taken four points from two consecutive away trips to Manchester City and Chelsea, giving their survival hopes a huge boost.
Mourinho, who had avoided media duties before the game, was terse after the final whistle, simply offering a highly sarcastic "congratulations" to Dean and Premier League head of referees Mike Riley, with whom "The Special One" has already butted heads this season.
"Mou" was clearly irked by the officials, but the Blues were lucky not to finish the game with 10 men after Ramires raised his hand to Sebastian Larsson.
Raheem Had a Sterling Effort in Liverpool's Win at Norwich
After Fabio Borini had done his parent club proud by helping to sink Chelsea on Saturday, Liverpool had the chance to go five points clear at the top with a win at relegation-threatened Norwich.
Brendan Rodgers' men rose to the challenge in a very nervy 3-2 victory, with Luis Suarez getting his customary goal against the Canaries and Raheem Sterling netting twice for his eighth and ninth of the season.
Sterling's opener was particularly brilliant, as he shook off Bradley Johnson and shot from long range. The strike conveyed the 19-year-old's sky-high confidence levels and did nothing to harm his prospects of starting a few World Cup games this summer.
With his goal, Suarez became the sixth man in Premiership history to score 30 goals in a single season, although he was up to his old tricks again.
Lukas Podolski Kept Arsenal's Champions League Aspirations Intact
Arsenal left the KC Stadium 3-0 victors on Sunday in a precursor to next month's FA Cup final. Lukas Podolski scored either side of the break to seal the win, the first of which was a sublime volley assisted by Aaron Ramsey. Incidentally, the Welshman put in an excellent performance, setting up two goals and scoring the opener.
Mikel Arteta, meanwhile, was left needing a trip to the dentist after George Boyd helped remove one of his front teeth.
David Moyes' Return to Goodison Park Did Not Go Well
David Moyes might have hoped his return to Goodison Park would be under better circumstances, but he brought the defending champions to his old stomping ground with a nine-point deficit to the Toffees in the league. The Scotsman left Merseyside with that deficit extended to 12 points, having witnessed one of the Red Devils' worst displays of the season.
The Guardian noted that this is the first time Everton have done the league double over United in 44 years. Additionally, Moyes' side has lost all four games to Merseyside opposition this season, failing to score a single goal in any of them.
Dimitar Berbatov Scored a Very Dimitar Berbatov Goal
If Monaco had not beaten Nice on Sunday, Paris Saint-Germain could have been awarded the Ligue 1 title in their home match with Evian on Wednesday.
However, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and the others will have to wait at least another another week, thanks to Dimitar Berbatov, who scored a fantastic lob five minutes into the match.
Joao Moutinho found "The Berba" on the edge of the area, and the Bulgarian proceeded to dink the ball over goalkeeper David Ospina as if it was the easiest thing in the world, which it probably was for him.
Lorient and Montpellier Played an Eight-Goal Thriller
Elsewhere in Ligue 1, Lorient won the award for Comeback of the Week in their 4-4 draw with Montpellier.
The relegation-threatened 2012 champions were cruising at 4-1 with just 12 minutes of normal time to go, but Lorient fought back to earn a point with three goals in a rather crazy six minutes, two of which came from super sub Vincent Aboubakar.
Montpellier weren't helped by the dismissal of goalkeeper Geoffrey Jourdren, but they can't have counted on such an embarrassing collapse at the end of their afternoon.
Paul Pogba Took Juventus a Step Closer to the Scudetto with a Wonder Strike
Juventus are within touching distance of their third successive Serie A title, thanks to a 1-0 win over relegation candidates Bologna in Turin on Saturday evening.
The star of the show was Paul Pogba, who struck a low shot through traffic from 20 yards in the 64th minute to earn the Old Lady three points.
It was the 21-year-old midfielder's seventh goal of the season—and further proof that Manchester United were barmy to release him in 2012.
Lionel Messi Saved the Day for Barcelona with a Superb Free Kick
Barcelona's miserable recent run looked as if it may have extended to a fourth consecutive defeat as they were trailing to Athletic Club at the Nou Camp on Sunday.
However, two goals in two minutes from Pedro, and Lionel Messi saved the Blaugrana's blushes and kept a slim glimmer of hope in their title aspirations.
The Argentinean scored the winner in the 74th minute from a free kick, driving the ball low through a gap in the wall. This was his 26th goal in 27 league games.
And Now...an Outrageous Rabona Goal
Let's finish with a very special goal you may not have seen from Thailand, unearthed by our friends at 101GG.
This one comes from BBCU's visit to Ang Thong on Saturday, where Slovakian journeyman midfielder Viliam Macko was representing the home side.
Macko was fed the ball in the box and completely fluffed his shot, but he more than made up for it on the second attempt with an outrageous Rabona-style lob over the keeper.
It's not clear if he intended it as a shot and a BBCU defender may have given it a final touch over the line, but it's very impressive all the same.
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