Bayern Munich held by Bayer Leverkusen, Tammy Abraham fires Roma to victory – European round-up

Bayern Munich’s Thomas Muller had a hapless return to action when he scored a costly own goal as the Bundesliga leaders were held 1-1 at home by third-placed Bayer Leverkusen on Saturday.

Bayern are still well in charge of the title race with 59 points after 25 matches although the result will give a glimmer of hope to chasing Borussia Dortmund, who are second on 50 points but have a game in hand. Leverkusen stay third on 45.

Bayern took an 18th-minute lead when defender Niklas Sule pounced on a loose ball to score after two failed clearances following a dangerous corner from Joshua Kimmich.

Leverkusen, who had won five of their previous six league matches heading into the game and boasted the second-best league form in 2022, levelled in the 36th minute with a fortuitous goal.

Muller, who had missed last week’s 1-0 win at Eintracht Frankfurt due to a positive Covid-19 test, flummoxed his own goalkeeper Sven Ulreich as he turned a free-kick from Kerem Demirbay into his own net.

Muller turned a free-kick from Kerem Demirbay into his own goal

Bayern had been dominant before conceding but Leverkusen ended the first half on top and Amine Adli and Charles Aranguiz missed two good chances to put the visitors ahead.

Bayern substitute Marcel Sabitzer, who replaced Muller just past the hour, spurned a one-on-one with goalkeeper Lukas Hradecky in the second period, while striker Robert Lewandowski also missed a chance to win the game for the Bavarians late on.

It was the first time Bayern had drawn a match in the league since the opening day of the season in August when they were held 1-1 at Borussia Monchengladbach and was also their first draw in the league at home.

Elsewhere on Saturday, an intriguing scrap to take control of the race for a Champions League place ended with honours even as RB Leipzig in fourth were held 1-1 at home by fifth-placed Freiburg, leaving both sides locked on 41 points.

Wolfsburg continued their march away from danger with a 1-0 win at home to seventh-placed Union Berlin, recording a third win in five games to reach 31 points in 12th place.

Eintracht Frankfurt, who are 10th, recorded the biggest win of the day by thrashing struggling Hertha Berlin 4-1 away, while mid-table VfL Bochum beat basement club Greuther Furth 2-1.

Serie A: Abraham fires Roma to victory over Atalanta

Abraham, Roma
Tammy Abraham scored again for Roma as his side beat Atalanta in Serie A

England striker Tammy Abraham’s first-half goal was enough to earn Roma a 1-0 win over Atalanta on Saturday, with Gian Piero Gasperini’s side missing the chance to climb into the top four of Serie A.

Roma had the better of the opening exchanges with Gianluca Mancini heading against the crossbar early on, before Abraham calmly slotted home his 13th Serie A goal of the season in the 32nd minute.

The visitors never really looked like getting back into the contest, with Roma holding on for a second successive 1-0 win given to them by an Abraham goal, as head coach Jose Mourinho served the final game of his two-match touchline ban.

Tammy Abraham, Roma
Abraham has scored 13 goals in Serie A this season

Atalanta’s miserable afternoon was made complete as Marten de Roon was sent off in stoppage time after receiving two bookings in quick succession for vigorously protesting against a Roma free-kick. Henrikh Mkhitaryan was then also sent off for Roma, but by then the game was won.

The result meant Mourinho’s sixth-placed side moved level on 47 points with Atalanta in fifth. Both teams are three points behind Juventus ahead of their match against Spezia on Sunday.

Elsewhere, Udinese pulled clear of the relegation zone after they beat Sampdoria 2-1 in a match where all the goals were scored inside the first 13 minutes.

Ligue 1: Brest boost survival chances

Marco Bizot pulled off outstanding saves as Brest edged Lens 1-0 to earn their first away win since December and inch closer to safety in Ligue 1.

Franck Honorat scored the only goal in the 59th minute by outpacing Lens midfielder Cheick Doucoure before chipping goalkeeper Jean-Louis Leca.

Brest remain in 12th place while Lens lost ground in the race for European spots by dropping to seventh place. Last season, Brest had to fight until the final round to stay in the top division.

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