World Sports News in Brief

Dembele volley takes Barca one point behind Atletico

Tuesday, 2021-04-06 08:56:41
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Soccer Football - La Liga Santander - FC Barcelona v Real Valladolid - Camp Nou, Barcelona, Spain - April 5, 2021 Barcelona's Ousmane Dembele scores their first goal. (Photo: Reuters)
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Barcelona forward Ousmane Dembele struck in stoppage time to snatch a vital 1-0 win at home to Real Valladolid in La Liga on Monday (Apr 5) to pull his side one point behind leaders Atletico Madrid.

A sixth consecutive league win took Barca back into second place and moved them on to 65 points, two above third-placed Real Madrid and one behind Atletico, who were beaten 1-0 at Sevilla on Sunday. Barca visit Real Madrid next Saturday with the chance to go top of the table a day before Atletico visit Real Betis.

* West Ham United boosted their hopes of finishing in the Premier League top four and earning a Champions League berth after an impressive first half helped them to a 3-2 win at Wolverhampton Wanderers on Monday. West Ham moved three places up to fourth on 52 points from 30 games, one more than fifth-placed Chelsea and three ahead of sixth-placed Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool in seventh.

* The Democratic People's Republic of Korea will not participate in the Tokyo Summer Olympics this July due to concerns over the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Sports in the DPRK on Tuesday (Apr 6).

* Tokyo Olympic organisers are expected to cancel a water polo test event scheduled for this weekend, public broadcaster NHK reported.

* The International Swimming Federation has cancelled the diving, artistic swimming, and marathon swim Olympic qualifiers scheduled for this month and May in Japan.

* Everton midfielder James Rodriguez scored on his return from a long lay-off on Saturday against Crystal Palace but it was not enough to earn his side victory as the Londoners snatched a 1-1 draw with a late strike from Michy Batshuayi. The Colombian had not featured for over six weeks due to injury. After coming close to scoring in the first half he broke the deadlock in the 56th minute, slotting a Seamus Coleman cutback inside the near post to score his 100th goal in European club football.

* Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane has ruled out playing Eden Hazard in Tuesday's (Apr 6) home Champions League quarter-final first leg against Liverpool, saying he will not risk another injury setback for his club's record signing. Belgian Hazard, ravaged by injuries since joining Real from Chelsea in 2019, returned to training last Friday ahead of schedule from his latest muscle problem, but played no part in Saturday's 2-0 win over Eibar.

* Alaves have parted company with coach Abelardo Fernandez after slipping to the bottom of the La Liga standings, the club announced on Monday. The decision comes after Alaves' 3-1 defeat by Celta Vigo on Sunday, which extended their winless run to seven games in the Spanish top flight.

* Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola said the club could break their transfer record and spend over £100 million (US$139 million) on a player, amid speculation over the future of Borussia Dortmund striker Erling Haaland.

* Borussia Dortmund's teenage striker Youssoufa Moukoko has been ruled out for the rest of the season after suffering a ligament injury, the club said on Monday. Moukoko is the youngest player to score in the Bundesliga after netting in December against Union Berlin at the age of 16.

* Paris St Germain defender Alessandro Florenzi has tested positive for COVID-19 and will miss their Champions League quarter-final first leg at Bayern Munich, the French club said on Monday. Florenzi's team mate and fellow Italy international Marco Verratti is also out of Wednesday's game in Munich after testing positive on Friday.

Reuters, Xinhua