Clubs around Europe once again took centre stage across Europe after the last International break of the year. 

Premier League

Top: Sunderland:

Sunderland secured back to back wins in the league for the first time since May, with Jermain Defoe and Victor Anichebe scoring the goals to seal a delightful 3-0 win for the hosts.

Jermain Defoe opened the scoring in the 34th minute of the first half, his 150th Premier League goal – while a second half brace from the in-form Victor Anichebe secured the points for the Black Cats.

Sunderland moved up to 19th place in the standings, three points adrift of safety.

Flop: Leicester City

Champions Leicester City continued the embarrassing defence of their title, slumping to yet another defeat at Watford, going down 2-1. The defending champions are still waiting for their first win away from home this season.

The game was over in as early as the 12th minute, as goals from Etienne Capoue and Roberto Pereyra put the Hornets ahead 2-0. Riyad Mahrez scored in the 15th minute, but the Foxes were unable to find another goal to get anything from the game.

Leicester City has now tasted defeat six times this season, twice as many losses as they suffered last season, as they sit in 14th place in the standings, two points above the relegation zone.

Bundesliga

Top: RB Leipzig

RB Leipzig’s fairytale adventure continued this weekend, as they came away from the Bay Arena with a thrilling 3-2 victory as goals from Emil Forsberg, Willi Orban and an own goal from Julian Baumgartlinger secured the points.

The newly promoted side became the first newcomers to go 11 games in the top flight without tasting defeat. Their impressive run of 6 wins in a row, sees them sit 3 points ahead of 2nd placed Bayern Munich.

The club which was founded just seven years ago will be aiming to be at the very least, the winter champions of Germany.

Flop: Bayern Munich

The defending champions surrendered their top spot over the weekend, losing Der Klassiker 1-0.

The solitary goal of the game was scored in the 11th minute by Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, his 12th league goal of the season. Bayern Munich improved in the 2nd half, even hitting the bar, but could not find a decisive strike.

The defeat was the first Bayern have suffered at the hands of Dortmund in the league since 2012, and it leaves them three points adrift of top spot, and three points ahead of Dortmund.

La Liga

Top: Real Madrid

The UEFA Champions League holders delivered a stunning performance against city rivals Atletico Madrid, running riot in a 3-0 win courtesy of a Cristiano Ronaldo hat-trick.

The Real Madrid talisman scored in the 23rd, 71st and 77 minutes of the game to send a statement in the league’s title race. The result sees Real Madrid extend their lead at the top of the table to 4 points.

Cristiano Ronaldo’s third goal on the day saw him go out in front as the highest goal scorer in Madrid derby history, surpassing Alfredo di Stefano’s record of 17 goals.

Flop: Barcelona

Barcelona dropped further points at home this weekend, only managing a 0-0 draw against Malaga in the absence of influential forwards Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez.

The defending champions had the lion’s share of the possession as expected, managing 28 shots on goal, but the Malaga defensive line was in fine form.

Malaga received two red cards in the game, but still, they held on for a share of the points. The result leaves Barcelona in 2nd place, four points adrift of leaders Real Madrid.

Serie A

Top: Atalanta

Atalanta handed themselves a big boost in their race for Europe with a morale-boosting victory over 3rd placed Roma. The keenly contested game finished 2-1 in favour of Atalanta.

The hosts came into the game in good form, with six wins from their last seven outings, but found themselves behind late in the first half courtesy of a Diego Perotti strike.

Mattia Caldara equalised for Atlanta midway through the second half, and the game looked like it was destined for a draw when Franck Kessie scored a 90th-minute winner from the penalty spot.

The victory leaves Atalanta in 5th place, with 25 points from 13 games.

Flop: Empoli

Empoli continued their disappointing form of late, suffering a heavy 4-0 defeat against Fiorentina on Sunday.

The hosts had no response to the firepower of Federico Bernardeschi and Josip Ilicic, both of whom found the back of the net twice.

Empoli has now lost 5 of their last ten league games, and they find themselves in 17th place, 3 points above the relegation zone.

Ligue 1

Top: Monaco

Radamel Falcao came off the bench to devastating effect, scoring his 5th goal in his last three games for Monaco to set the tone for a 3-0 victory.

Lorient had been holding their own against the team from the principality, but the floodgates opened after Falcao’s 64th-minute goal. Thomas Lemar and Gabriel Boschilia scored the 2nd and 3rd goals.

The win means that Monaco sits 2nd on the league table, 3 points adrift of highflying Nice.

Flop: Lille

Lille continued their dismal start to the season, losing 1-0 to Lyon, their 8th defeat in their last ten matches.

Maxwell Cornet scored the decisive goal in as early as the 3rd minute, while Younousse Sankhare got sent off for Lille to complete a miserable night for the hosts.

Lille is currently 19th in the league table, 2 points adrift of safety.

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