Kaka keeps Real’s title-bid alive

Afp April 26, 2010

MADRID: Brazilian super-sub Kaka ended a six-week injury absence by grabbing the winner for Real Madrid in a 2-1 victory over Zaragoza on Saturday which kept his side on the shoulders of Barcelona at the top of La Liga.

Raul saw a shot come back off the post in the first half before putting Real into the lead after the break and the visitors appeared to be comfortably in control when Zaragoza were reduced to 10-men after Matteo Contini was red-carded.

However, Adrian Colunga rounded keeper Iker Casillas to equalise and Zaragoza continued to stretch the Real defence on the counter-attack. Real were reduced to shots from distance as they desperately sought the winner until Kaka came off the bench to score with just eight minutes left.

Barcelona remain in driving seat

Barcelona striker Thierry Henry struck his first goal in over two months as defending champions Barcelona beat nine-man Xerez 3-1.

Following an opener from Jeffren Isaias, Henry, given a rare start, then found the back of the net for the first time since he scored against Racing Santander in mid-February.

A minute later Mario Bermejo brought bottom-side Xerez back into the game and the visitors had several chances to equalise at the start of the second half before Zlatan Ibrahimovic converted a Yaya Toure cross to give Barcelona a two-goal cushion.

Valencia closer to Europe

A David Villa penalty saw Valencia beat Deportivo la Coruna 1-0 to put them a step closer to Champions League football next season with four games left. Valencia are now eight points clear of fifth placed Sevilla after a comprehensive victory over an injury-plagued Depor side who have now gone nine matches without a win.

Inter on top in Serie A

Inter Milan came from behind to beat relegation-threatened Atalanta 3-1 at the San Siro on Saturday to leapfrog Roma at the top of the Serie A table.

Goals from Diego Milito, Kenya midfielder McDonald Mariga and Cristian Chivu saw the champions claim three vital points in the title race after Simone Tiribocchi’s opener for the visitors.

In the day’s late game, Palermo ended AC Milan’s title hopes with a 3-1 success in Sicily.