Tue, Apr 16, 2013 - Page 18 News List

SOCCER SHORTS

Agencies

NETHERLANDS

Ajax go five points clear

Ajax took a huge step toward a third straight title as they beat rivals PSV Eindhoven 3-2 away on Sunday to go five points clear at the top of the table. Derk Boerrigter scored the winner for the visitors with 13 minutes remaining after Jeremain Lens had twice pulled PSV level. Ajax have 66 points with four matches remaining, five ahead of Vitesse, who gave away a three-goal lead to draw 3-3 at Roda JC Kerkrade on Saturday. PSV are a further point adrift in third, ahead on goal-difference of Feyenoord, who were held to a 1-1 draw by RKC Waalwijk on Sunday. In-form Ajax dominated the match and went ahead through Kolbeinn Sighthorsson, who finished from close range after 33 minutes after being set up by Mark van Bommel. A toothless PSV equalized two minutes before the interval when Kevin Strootman punished some sloppy play by Christian Eriksen to tee up Lens for his first. It was Eriksen, though, who restored the lead early in the second half, making the most of a disorganized PSV defense to cut in from the left and beat defender Timothy Derijck through his legs at the near post. Lens grabbed his second after 69 minutes, netting a rebound after a free-kick by Dries Mertens hit the post, before Boerrigter settled the match.

RUSSIA

Anzhi keep title hopes alive

Big spenders Anzhi Makhachkala kept alive their hopes of winning a maiden league title with a comfortable 3-0 defeat of lowly Volga Nizhny Novgorod on Sunday. Anzhi, playing without captain Samuel Eto’o, scored first-half goals through Bosnian defender Emir Spahic and Ivory Coast striker Lacina Traore, before Brazilian playmaker Willian added a third late in the second half to complete the rout. The only worry for coach Guus Hiddink was an injury to Traore, which forced the tall striker to leave the pitch late in the game. “He pulled a hamstring and usually it takes several weeks to heal such an injury,” Hiddink told reporters. The win, their first since the league’s three-month mid-season break which started in December last year, put Anzhi within 10 points of leaders CSKA Moscow, who were held to a 0-0 draw by city rivals Dynamo on Friday, with six games remaining. Champions Zenit St Petersburg are second, six points off the pace.

GREECE

AEK players chased off

AEK players were chased off the pitch by hundreds of angry supporters after the struggling club conceded a late goal in a crucial relegation match against Panthrakikos on Sunday. AEK, who desperately needed a victory to improve their chances of survival, fell behind in the 84th minute when defender Mavroudis Bougaidis turned the ball past his own goalkeeper from a Dimitris Papadopoulso cross. That prompted a mass pitch invasion and both sets of players ran for the sanctuary of the dressing rooms as play was stopped by the referee.

BRAZIL

Two fans shot to death

Authorities say two fans were shot to death on their way to a test event at a World Cup stadium. The fans were killed about 5km from the Arena Castelao in Fortaleza, one of the six venues hosting matches in the Confederations Cup in June. Local World Cup organizers lamented the deaths, but denied they were connected to the test event — a match between local rivals Ceara and Fortaleza. Police say the men, wearing Ceara jerseys, were shot in the head after being confronted by Fortaleza supporters at a plaza. Police later detained a man suspected of being involved.

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