This weekend could prove to be the decisive moment in the Serie A title race and after being left out of Jorge Sampaoli’s Argentina squad, Paulo Dybala might just be the player to wrestle the advantage back in Juventus’ favour.
Juve’s bid to claim a seventh straight Scudetto was dealt a blow earlier in the campaign when Lazio won 2-1 in Turin, but in the Stadio Olimpico on Saturday, the Bianconeri avenged that loss to close on leaders Napoli.
Deep in stoppage time with Juventus heading for a damaging draw, Dybala stuck, taking a touch through the legs of Marco Parolo before firing past Thomas Strakosha despite falling to the ground.
Dybala with this last-minute winner. Eyes on the nutmeg👀 pic.twitter.com/WfbY5IFguS
— Nabil (@FekirSZN) March 3, 2018
As Napoli slumped to a 4-2 defeat against Roma, Juve’s victory took the champions a point behind the league leaders with a game in hand.
Lorenzo Insigne has opened the scoring for Napoli but goals an Edin Dzeko brace, another for Cengiz Under and an emphatic finish by Diego Perotti, named this week in Jorge Sampaoli’s Argentina squad, put Roma firmly in charge.
Dries Mertens scored a consolation in stoppage time but Napoli’s ten-match winning streak had been brought to an end and with it Juve took the upper hand in the title race.
Paris Saint-Germain maintained their 14-point lead at the top of Ligue 1 with victory over Troyes and with Neymar out for the season, Ángel Di María was once more the star man for Unai Emery’s side.
After a goalless first half, Di María dashed in behind to produce a delicate chip over the goalkeeper, El Fideo’s 17th of the season. The Argentina international has now scored 13 and added nine assists in the 15 matches in 2018 and could barely be heading into PSG’s vital Champions League clash and an international break in better form.
No Neymar, no problem 😎
Di Maria scores a cheeky chip for PSG vs Troyes pic.twitter.com/goWbtYfe81
— Goal (@goal) March 3, 2018
In LaLiga, the frustrating Franco Vázquez produced one of those performances that has spectators wondering why he struggles to produce such brilliance every week as Sevilla defeated Athletic Club at the Estadio Ramón Sánchez Pizjuán.
El Mudo had already clipped a cross onto the head of Luis Muriel which clattered against the crossbar before slipping in the Colombian to open the scoring after 27 minutes. And five minutes later, Vázquez rose to head in a cross from the right and that proved enough to give Sevilla victory.
Lucas Alario’s hopes of a place in Russia have all but disappeared and so the Bayer Leverkusen striker will likely need to wait until after the World Cup to rekindle his fledgling international career but it didn’t prevent the 25-year-old slotting in his sixth Bundesliga goal of the season in a victory away to Wolfsburg.
Alario sent the goalkeeper the wrong way to open the scoring after half an hour and it paved the way for a 2-1 win that sent Leverkusen into fifth.
— Bayer 04 Leverkusen (@bayer04_en) March 3, 2018
And finally, there was an increased interest in the start of the Chinese Super League season but it wasn’t particular good news for the Argentinian contingent.
Javier Mascherano made his debut for Hebei China Fortune but was unable to celebrate victory as Ezequiel Lavezzi missed a penalty in a 1-1 draw with Tianjin Teda.
— Xinhua Sports (@XHSports) March 3, 2018