Derby weekend in EPL

December 08, 2017
Manchester City's David Silva scoring a late goal against West Ham United at the Etihad Stadium last weekend. Man City won 2-1.
Allardyce
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MANCHESTER, England (AP):

It's derby weekend in the Premier League, with two of English football's most illustrious rivalries being played back to back on Sunday.

Unbeaten Manchester City can move into their biggest lead of the season 11 points with a win at second-place Manchester United. Before that, fourth-place Liverpool look to keep up their prolific form when they host Everton, who head to Anfield under recently hired manager Sam Allardyce.

Continuing the derby theme in the 16th round, third-place Chelsea visit London rivals West Ham in tomorrow's early kickoff and would briefly move tied on points with United with a win.

Swansea's Paul Clement is the latest Premier League manager under huge scrutiny, with his team having dropped to last place ahead of a home match against fourth-to-last West Bromwich Albion. Five managers have already been fired this season.

 

SPAIN

 

Barcelona will visit Villarreal on Sunday looking to end a run of back-to-back draws that has kept the team from increasing its lead in the Spanish league.

In his first season in charge, Ernesto Valverde has kept Barcelona undefeated in all competitions, including the first 14 rounds of La Liga. But the Catalan club was held at second-place Valencia to 1-1 before a surprisingly drawing with Celta Vigo 2-2 at Camp Nou last weekend. Fortunately for the pacesetters, their title rivals have largely failed to take advantage.

Valencia trail Barcelona by five points before hosting Celta tomorrow as they look to bounce back from their first defeat of the season, a 1-0 loss at Getafe. Also that day, fourth-place Real Madrid take on fifth-place Sevilla, with both teams eight points adrift of Barcelona.

Third-place Atletico Madrid will try to rebound from their elimination from the Champions League when they travel to Real Betis on Sunday. Atletico are unbeaten in the league and playing better on the road, where they have won five of eight games.

 

GERMANY

 

After rivals all dropped points last weekend, Bayern Munich can take the Bundesliga's unofficial "autumn champion" title with a win at Eintracht Frankfurt tomorrow if Leipzig doesn't beat Mainz at home at the same time.

Bayern, who are bidding for a record-extending sixth straight Bundesliga title, leads by six points after 14 rounds. They have the best defence in the league, while Eintracht's defence is the second best.

 

ITALY

 

For the second straight week, six-time defending champions Juventus face the Serie A leaders. This time, the opponents are Inter Milan instead of Napoli.

Juve's 1-0 win over Napoli last week left the top three clubs separated by only two points. Inter are one point ahead of Napoli and Juventus are one point further back.

Yet, while Juventus had to expend energy in the Champions League in midweek, beating Olympiakos to qualify for the knockout stages, Inter have had all week to train because they didn't qualify for any European competition this season.

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