Europe: Sanchez scores twice for Marseille, PSG held by Monaco

New-look Marseille’s bright Ligue 1 start continued as Alexis Sanchez’s double lifted them within goal difference of leaders PSG, who were held at Monaco.

Igor Tudor’s new-look Marseille are looking good with Sanchez helping his side to a 3-0 at south-coast rivals Nice.

Nice recruited strongly, bringing in established Premier League players like goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel, midfielder Aaron Ramsey and Arsenal’s Nicolas Pepe, but they are still seeking a win and sit 18th.

Marseille have made a strong start under Tudor, who is known as a disciplinarian and whose appointment was questioned by fans – especially when he left playmaker Dimitri Payet out of the first three games.

But a high-octane brand of pressing soccer is winning over fans, with 10 points from their first four games, and Sanchez already firing on all cylinders.

The Chile forward grabbed his first goal in the 10th minute and, after Nuno Tavares made it three goals in four games this season, the on-loan Arsenal full-back combined with Payet to help set up Sanchez’s second goal just before half-time.

Neymar won and scored a penalty as PSG rallied to draw 1-1 at home to Monaco.

After Kevin Volland had given the visitors an early opener in Paris, Neymar latched onto Lionel Messi’s pass down the left and cut inside central defender Guillermo Maripan, who appeared to catch him with an outstretched leg.

The referee waved away PSG’s penalty claims but then awarded a spot-kick following a video review.

Neymar used his usual staggered run-up to confuse goalkeeper Alexander Nubel before casually guiding the ball home. It was Neymar’s sixth goal in the league and eighth in five games overall.

La Liga: Lewandowski strikes twice as Barca hammer Valladolid

Barcelona thrashed Valladolid 4-0 with Robert Lewandowski on target again
Barcelona thrashed Valladolid 4-0 with Robert Lewandowski on target again

Robert Lewandowski continues to make scoring look easy after joining Barcelona from Bayern Munich. He found the net twice to lead the Catalan club to a 4-0 rout of Valladolid in La Liga.

Real Madrid relied on Karim Benzema to maintain a perfect start with a third straight away victory. Benzema scored in the 88th minute and deep into stoppage time to give the defending champions a 3-1 win at Espanyol.

It was the third league goal for Benzema, while Lewandowski took his tally to four. The Poland striker had also scored a double in the 4-1 victory at Real Sociedad last weekend, and was twice denied by the woodwork at the Nou Camp on Sunday.

“He is extraordinary,” Barcelona coach Xavi Hern├índez said of Lewandowski. “He is a natural leader who has been helping us greatly.”

Pedri González and Sergi Roberto also scored for Barcelona, which had opened their campaign with a disappointing 0-0 draw against Rayo Vallecano at the Nou Camp.

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