PSV edge Feyenoord
Zakaria Labyad scored the winning goal in the 85th minute to help PSV Eindhoven beat Feyenoord 3-2 on Sunday and maintain their lead of the Dutch league. Ola Toivonen put PSV ahead in the 44th minute after combining with Dries Mertens. Belgium forward Mertens then drilled an unstoppable shot to increase PSV’s lead in the 66th minute, but Guyon Fernandez’s two goals inside seven minutes gave Feyenoord hope, before Labyad’s late winner. Luuk de Jong’s 44th-minute goal secured a 1-0 win for Steve McClaren’s Twente against Utrecht. PSV lead with 48 points, while AZ Alkmaar are second with 46 after drawing 3-3 with SC Heerenveen. Twente, who have a game in hand, are third with 45 points. Also on Sunday, Siem de Jong grabbed a pair of goals to lead Ajax to a 4-1 win over Excelsior Rotterdam as the Amsterdam side moved fifth in the standings. In other games on Sunday, it was RKC Waalwijk 1, Vitesse Arnhem 0; NAC Breda 4, ADO The Hague 0; VVV-Venlo 3, Heracles Almelo 1; Roda JC 0, De Graafschap 2; and NEC Nijmegen 4, Groningen 0.
Porto go top of the table
Porto moved atop the Portuguese league standings with a 2-0 home win over Feirense on Sunday. The defending champions’ 15th win of the season lifted them level with Benfica on points, with the two rivals set to meet on Friday. Defender Luciano left Feirense with 10 men in the 57th minute when he was shown a red card for fouling Marc Janko in the area. Hulk missed the resulting penalty, but centerback Maicon gave Porto the lead with a header in the 68th minute and substitute James Rodriguez sealed the win in the 72nd. Also on Sunday, it was Pacos Ferreira 0, Nacional 2; Beira Mar 2, Setubal 3; Olhanense 0, Gil Vicente 0; and Sporting 1, Rio Ave 0.
Prandelli drops Balotelli
Manchester City striker Mario Balotelli was dropped from the Italy squad for tomorrow’s friendly international against the US in Genoa for breaking coach Cesare Prandelli’s ethical code. Balotelli scored in City’s 3-0 win over Blackburn Rovers on Saturday, but he had previously been suspended for four matches after a stamp on Tottenham Hotspur’s Scott Parker last month. “I don’t want players who commit reaction fouls and get sent off,” Prandelli had already warned on Saturday. “He seems a little agitated to me. When I say we have to reach the European Championship prepared, I mean I don’t want to see players who, at the first sign of difficulty, commit reaction fouls and get sent off, leaving their teammates to struggle with 10 men.” Balotelli has been replaced in the squad by AS Roma’s 20-year-old striker Fabio Borini.
Rooney, Cleverley ruled out
Caretaker manager Stuart Pearce’s selection headache ahead of his first match in charge of England against the Netherlands deepened on Sunday when both Wayne Rooney and Manchester United teammate Tom Cleverley were ruled out. United manager Sir Alex Ferguson confirmed Rooney would not be available for tomorrow’s match due to a throat infection, while also ruling out young midfielder Cleverley. “They’ll be out,” he told Sky Sports News. “Wayne has still not recovered from his throat infection, so hopefully we’ll get him ready for next Sunday, when we have a big game at White Hart Lane.” Pearce had already lost striker Darren Bent, who injured an ankle in Aston Villa’s 0-0 draw with Wigan Athletic on Saturday.