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Real, Barca party

sports Updated: Nov 21, 2011 01:53 IST

A stylish Barcelona sent a message to Real Madrid that they are ready to fight to keep their La Liga title after cruising to a 4-0 win over Zaragoza — even if Real responded with a hard-fought 3-2 success over Valencia to preserve their three-point cushion.

The pressure was on Real, who had Barcelona breathing down their necks after their earlier 4-0 win over Zaragoza but the Meringues produced a battling display against a Valencia side who pushed them all the way after the break. http://www.hindustantimes.com/images/HTPopups/211111/21-11-pg-19a.jpg



In front of a packed Nou Camp, Barca gave a rendition of attacking football, pressing forward from the start against a Zaragoza side who have only won two games all season.

Gerard Pique headed home a Xavi Hernandez free-kick, Lionel Messi should have scored when he tried a flamboyant effort in front of the keeper but he made no mistake two minutes before half time, finishing clinically. Carlos Puyol knocked in a scrappy third while David Villa completed a comprehensive win with a header 15 minutes from the end.

United win

Swansea: Javier Hernansez’ first-half goal gave Manchester United a hard-earned 1-0 win at Swansea on Saturday, ensuring the champions stayed within five points of EPL leader Manchester City. In a largely uneventful match, Hernandez pounced for his fifth goal of the season in the 11th minute after defender Angel Rangel gave the ball away to Ryan Giggs.