Author`s name Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey

Manchester United again

Manchester United, 12 points clear after 26 games with 12 games to play. What is the secret of Sir Alex Ferguson? In La Liga Real nears Atlético and sets its sights on second place. Bayern is the runaway leader in the Bundesliga, Juve is five points clear and in Portugal, FC Porto lost the chance to go two points clear.

Premier League 26 games

1 Manchester United 65 points; 2 Manchester City 53; 3 Chelsea 49; 4 Tottenham Hotspur 48; 5 Arsenal FC 44.

Manchester United goes 12 points clear after a 2-0 win against Everton in which Ryan Giggs scored - he has now scored in 23 successive seasons in the Premiership. Manchester City goes 12 points behind after a 3-1 defeat at lowly Southampton; Chelsea won 4-1 against Wigan; Spurs received and beat Newcastle United 2-1 and Arsenal went to Sunderland to win 1-0.

La Liga 23 games

1 FC Barcelona 62 points; Atlético Madrid 50; Real Madrid 46.

A 6-1 thrashing of Getafe by Barcelona, a hat-trick by Cristiano Ronaldo in Real's 4-1 drubbing of Sevilla and Atlético again lost points by crashing 2-1 at Rayo Vallecano.

Serie A 24 Games

1 Juventus 55 points; 2 Napoli, 50; 3 Lazio, 44; 4 Inter, 43; 5 AC Milan, 41.

Juventus beat Fiorentina 2-0; Napoli went to Lazio to claim a point in a 1-1 draw; Inter beat Chievo 3-1 an AC Milan drew at Cagliari with one goal apiece.

Bundesliga 21 games

1 FC Bayern Munchen 54 points; 2 Borussia Dortmund, 39; 3 Leverkusen 38; 4 Eintracht Frankfurt 37.

The real race is for second spot, since Bayern has already practically claimed the championship. Bayern powered to a 4-0 demolishing of Schalke; Dortmund lost ground in second place with a 4-1 home defeat by Hamburg; Leverkusen dropped 2 points at Borussia Moenchengladbach, drawing 3-3 and Frankfurt could do no better than a goalless home draw with Nurnberg.

Ligue 1 24 games

1 PSG 51 points; 2 Olympique Lyonnais, 45; 3 Olympique de Marseille, 43.

PSG defeated Bastia 3-1; Lyon went down at home to Lille 1-3 and Marseille went to Évian to draw one goal apiece.

Russian Premier League 19 games

CSKA (43), Anzhi Makhachkala (41) and Zenit St. Petersburg (38) are 1,2,3 in the Russian Premier League. CSKA beat Mordovia 2-1 in Moscow; Zenit and Anzhi drew 1-1 in St. Petersburg.

Portuguese Premier League 17 games

1 FC Porto 46 points, ahead of Benfica (second), 46 points on goal difference. 3 Paços de Ferreira, 34; 4 Sporting de Braga, 30. FC Porto drew at home with Olhanense 1-1; Benfica drew at Nacional (Madeira) 2-2; Paços de Ferreira beat Sporting de Braga 3-2 away to retain third spot.

Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey



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