World Sports News in Brief

Chelsea held 2-2 by Burnley, denting Champions League hopes

Tuesday, 2019-04-23 06:48:31
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Chelsea's Ruben Loftus-Cheek (L) in action with Burnley's Ashley Westwood - Premier League - Chelsea v Burnley - Stamford Bridge, London, Britain - April 22, 2019. (Photo: Reuters)
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Chelsea suffered a setback in their push for a Champions League spot when they were held to a 2-2 draw at home to Burnley in the Premier League on Monday.

The draw pushed Chelsea up a place into fourth spot in the Premier League, level on points with third-placed Spurs and one point ahead of Arsenal, both of whom have a played a game less.

* Fourth-placed Eintracht Frankfurt squandered the chance to widen the gap with their rivals in the Bundesliga after conceding a last-gasp equaliser in a 1-1 draw with VfL Wolfsburg on Monday. Frankfurt are on 53 points, two ahead of fifth-placed Borussia Moenchengladbach, with four matches left in the season.

* Atalanta surged into contention for a top four finish in Serie A with a 2-1 victory at Napoli on Monday. While second-placed Napoli have 67 points and are six clear of third-placed Inter Milan, Atalanta climbed to fifth with 56 points, levelling on points with AC Milan in fourth and one ahead of sixth-placed AS Roma with five games to play.

* Norwich City all but confirmed their promotion to the Premier League with a 2-2 draw at Stoke City on Monday. The Championship leaders, who sit six points above third-placed Leeds United on 88 points, have a plus 10 goal difference on Marcelo Bielsa's side with just two games remaining.

* Home favourite Marcel Granollers was the main casualty on the opening day of the Barcelona Open as the tournament got underway amidst murky, grey skies in Catalonia. The Spaniard was beaten 7-5 4-6 6-4 by Chilean Nicolas Jarry, who will face second seed Alexander Zverev in the second round.

* Tottenham Hotspur are focused solely on Tuesday's Premier League match against Brighton & Hove Albion and not on their Champions League semi-final against Ajax Amsterdam next week, manager Mauricio Pochettino said on Monday. Tottenham maintained their grip on third place despite a 1-0 defeat at Manchester City after Arsenal failed to capitalise following a 3-2 defeat by Crystal Palace.

* Barcelona are fully focused on winning La Liga and if possible want to wrap up the title before next week’s Champions League semi-final clash with Liverpool, coach Ernesto Valverde said on Monday. The Catalans, who are on 77 points and are nine ahead of second-placed Atletico Madrid, travel to Alaves on Tuesday.

* Brighton & Hove Albion players cannot be accused of not caring about retaining their Premier League status as they look to avoid the drop with four games left in the season, manager Chris Hughton said on Monday. The south-coast club sit three points above the relegation zone but have endured a severe dip in form in 2019, winning only two of their last 14 league games to fall from 13th to 17th in the standings.

* Crystal Palace are confident their talismanic winger Wilfried Zaha will spend many more seasons at the Premier League club despite expressing his desire to play in the Champions League, manager Roy Hodgson has said. Zaha, who scored in Sunday's 3-2 win at Arsenal, signed a new contract in August to stay at Selhurst Park until 2023 but British media reports say he has caught the eye of a number of top clubs in England and Europe with his strong performances.

* Chelsea winger Callum Hudson-Odoi suffered what appeared to be a serious Achilles tendon injury in Monday's 2-2 draw with Burnley, assistant coach Gianfranco Zola said. Hudson-Odoi, 18, had to be helped off the pitch shortly before halftime when he was replaced by Pedro.

* Brazil captain Neymar has enough time to be in peak condition for the Copa America after a foot injury, national team coach Tite said on Monday. Neymar returned to the pitch for Paris Saint-Germain in their 3-1 Ligue 1 victory over Monaco on Sunday, his first appearance since suffering a metatarsal fracture in January.

* The Chinese city of Chengdu has been selected as the host to the 2022 World Team Table Tennis Championships. The International Table Tennis Federation chose the southwestern Chinese city on Monday, over Japan's Kita Kyushu and Portugal's Lisbon.

Reuters, Xinhua