LONDON: AC Milan’s surge up the Serie A table was slowed by a 1-1 derby draw with Inter Milan while Paris St. Germain and substitute David Beckham won the big match in France as the leaders beat Olympique Marseille 2-0.
The runaway leaders in Spain, England and Germany all secured victories with Barcelona, Manchester United and Bayern Munich now in sight of their respective titles.
Manchester United remained 12 points clear of Manchester City at the top of the Premier League after both teams recorded comfortable 2-0 victories over the weekend.
United won at bottom club Queens Park Rangers on Saturday thanks to a spectacular early goal by young Brazilian right back Rafael and a late one by 39-year-old midfielder Ryan Giggs.
Second-half goals by Yaya Toure and Carlos Tevez earned City a deserved victory over third-placed Chelsea, who are only a point clear of Tottenham Hotspur ahead of their London rivals’ trip to West Ham United on Monday.
Swansea City crushed fourth tier Bradford City 5-0 at Wembley to win the Capital One (League) Cup, the first major trophy in their history.
Nathan Dyer and Jonathan de Guzman scored two goals each and striker Michu was also on target for Michael Laudrup’s Premier League side.
Leaders Barcelona and third-placed Real Madrid both had to come from behind to win 2-1 in La Liga this weekend, as they fielded weakened sides ahead of their King’s Cup semi-final second leg on Tuesday.
David Villa and Lionel Messi scored as Barca rallied to beat Sevilla at home, shaking off any hangover felt from their shock 2-0 defeat at AC Milan in the Champions League last week.
It was only after Cristiano Ronaldo came on as a second-half substitute that Real came back to beat bottom club Deportivo Coruna with goals from Kaka and Gonzalo Higuain.
Barca have 68 points from 25 games, 12 ahead of Atletico Madrid in second after they maintained their perfect home record with a 1-0 win with 10 men at home to Espanyol. Radamel Falcao’s penalty kept them four points ahead of Real.
Defending champions and leaders Juventus found little resistance from lowly Siena in a 3-0 win on Sunday, Stephan Lichtsteiner, Sebastian Giovinco and Paul Pogba sharing the goals.
Juventus, who have 58 points from 26 games, moved seven clear of Napoli, who visit Udinese on Monday.
Third-placed AC Milan, a further six points behind, dominated the first half of the derby against Inter Milan and went ahead through Stephan El Shaarawy after 20 minutes.
But they were pegged back when Ezequiel Schelotto headed in, three minutes after coming on as a substitute, for fifth-placed Inter.
Bayern Munich opened up a 17-point lead at the top of the Bundesliga and are cruising unhindered toward their first league title in three years after a 6-1 demolition of Werder Bremen, their 19th win in 23 games.
Mario Gomez was twice on target and Arjen Robben also scored as coach Jupp Heynckes made six changes to the team that beat Arsenal 3-1 in the Champions League in midweek.
Borussia Dortmund’s title defense looks dead in the water after their 1-1 draw at Borussia Moenchengladbach despite having the hosts on the backfoot for more than an hour.
Dortmund, however, managed to hold on to second spot after Bayer Leverkusen produced a lacklustre performance in a goalless draw at bottom-placed Greuther Fuerth.
David Beckham enjoyed a winning Paris St. Germain debut as goalkeeper Salvatore Sirigu produced an outstanding performance in a 2-0 home victory over Ligue 1 title rivals Olympique Marseille.
Ligue 1 leaders PSG opened the scoring thanks a bizarre Nicolas Nkoulou own goal in the 12th minute and Zlatan Ibrahimovic sealed victory from close range in stoppage time.
PSG have 54 points from 26 games, three ahead of Olympique Lyon, who beat Lorient 3-1 at home thanks to Lisandro Lopez, Rachid Ghezzal and Arnold Mvuemba’s goals. Marseille stayed third on 46.
Third-placed Feyenoord beat leaders PSV Eindhoven 2-1 at home thanks to second-half goals from Ruben Schaken and Graziano Pelle to stay in the title race as they reduced the gap to three points.
Ajax Amsterdam, in second, wasted the chance to go level on points with PSV as they were held to a 1-1 draw at home against ADO Den Haag.
Steve McClaren’s Twente Enschede slipped to fifth as their woes continued with a 2-1 defeat at Heerenveen.
Porto and Benfica’s tight race at the top of the Portuguese Premier League continued with both coming out victorious against Rio Ave and Pacos de Ferreira to remain joint-leaders on 52 points after 20 matches.
In-form Colombian striker Jackson Martinez went from villain to hero as he grabbed a brace in Porto’s 2-1 win after missing a penalty which he tried to chip.
Benfica brushed aside surprise packages Pacos de Ferreira, who are third in the championship, with a quality performance that earned them a 3-0 win with goals from South American trio Enzo Perez, Oscar Cardozo and Eduardo Salvio.
Olympiakos Piraeus continued their march to the title with a 2-1 home win over relegation-threatened Aris Salonika which left their lead at the top at 16 points.
Champions Celtic are 21 points clear after a 5-0 home drubbing of bottom side Dundee.