For years, the question of who would eventually take the place of Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi at the top of the game has remained definitively unanswered. Luka Modrić won FIFA’s The Best award in the men’s category this year, to finally break that duopoly. It is Paris St. Germain’s Kylian Mbappé, however, who promises to carry forward the mantle in the long term.
The French sensation scored four goals against a strong Lyon side, as PSG ran out 5-0 winners over their rivals yesterday. Mbappé now has ten goals and four assists in just seven matches in all competitions. He doesn’t turn 20 until December!
La Liga title race
The title race in La Liga appears to be getting more intriguing by the week, as the traditional big guns struggle for consistency. Barcelona and Real Madrid dropped points once again this weekend, results which allowed Sevilla to ascend to the top of the standings. Atlético Madrid were also big winners in the process, as their 1-0 win over Real Betis took them level with Barça on 15 points, one ahead of the now fourth-placed Real.
Over 2.5 Goals market
Punters who took a shot on the Over 2.5 Goals market this weekend are likely to have been smiling all the way to the bank! Goals were flying in across the continent this weekend, starting with Ligue 1 where Over 2.5 Goals featured in five of the ten matches played. The standout result in the Bundesliga was RB Leipzig’s 6-0 win over Nürnberg. Five out of eight matches in the German top flight indeed featured at least three goals.
Serie A chalked up two 3-1 score lines, one game ended 3-2 and another 2-1.
Borussia Dortmund carried on their flying form this weekend, as they twice came back from behind to beat Augsburg 4-3 in an entertaining encounter. Consequently, BVB now have seven wins and two draws in their nine matches in all competitions so far. It has been a near-perfect start for manager Lucien Favre, who joined the club from OGC Nice in the summer.
La Liga powerhouses
The challenges facing the two big giants in Spanish football are something of an aberration. On their way to winning the title last season, Barcelona lost only one match for the entire campaign, although they also drew nine times. This season, they have already dropped points four times out of only eight matches played. Zinedine Zidane led Real to triumph in the 2016/17 season, where they dropped points nine times. Like Barça, Los Blancos have now also failed to win half of their matches so far.
Niko Kovač’s dream start to life as Bayern Munich manager has quickly turned into a nightmare. An embarrassing 3-0 defeat to Borussia Monchengladbach saw the Bavarians complete their fourth match without a win this weekend. The last time Bayern went on such a run was in April 2017, while they were on the brink of sealing a fifth consecutive Bundesliga title.
Kovač oversaw five straight wins at the beginning of his career at the Allianz Arena, but he now faces the prospect of a short tenure if things fail to improve quickly.
It was another chastising week for Leonardo Jardim and his Monaco side in Ligue 1, as they fell to a 2-1 defeat at the hands of Rennes. It was a fourth consecutive loss for the club, who are now without a win in ten games in all competitions.
This is without doubt, a huge fall from grace for a side that won the league and reached the Champions League semi-finals barely two years ago.