European round up: Liverpool, Bayern Munich held, Tottenham and Atletico Madrid win
Liverpool 2 – 2 Sunderland
Goals from Adam Lallana and Roberto Firmino gave Liverpool a 2-0 lead over Premier League strugglers, Sunderland but an inspired second half thanks to goals from Adam Johnson and Jermain Defoe had the Kop biting their nails as Liverpool's defense failed to withstand yet another mediocre attack.
Firmino continued his fine form in front of and all around the goal against the Black Cats by scoring one after setting a peach of a tap-in for his English teammate, Lallana, but will feel hard done by considering all of his efforts resulting in a solitary point.
Liverpool started the game with them 8th on the table and remain there one spot above Southampton – who have their fixture later tonight.
Jurgen Klopp’s men were stifled by a resilient Sunderland defense in the first half but found the net twice in the second half due to good pressing and a noticeably higher ambition than their North-East English counterparts but did not expect the fight back they received and now have to fight their way back into the Europa League places in the games to come.
Firmino as false 9 in the EPL:— Seleção Brasileira (@BrazilStats) February 6, 2016
That's 11 in 6. You're welcome Dunga. Sincerely, Klopp. pic.twitter.com/LGiOiMGB0h
Tottenham 1 – 0 Watford
Tottenham, meanwhile, moved up to second in the Premier League table with a 1-0 win over newly-promoted Watford FC. Dele Alli came on for Tottenham and made the difference, latching on to pinpoint Moussa Dembele's ball and crossing brilliantly with the outside of his boot for Kieran Trippier who simply had to tap the ball into the net.
Mauricio Pochettino’s men have been on an incredible run of late and now lie second in the table thanks to some incredible play from the English core powering the team. Dele Alli has been inspirational as has Harry Kane, Eric Dier and more and with this win over Watford increase their chances of potentially challenging for the Premier League title with Leicester City.
With Manchester City failing to win against Leicester, Tottenham are only five points adrift of the Premier League summit.
Atletico Madrid 3 – 1 SD Eibar
In Spain, Atletico Madrid put in an incredible performance after going down in the game against mid-table SD Eibar.
Diego Simeone’s men conceded an early second-half goal from Keko but then three goals from defending prospect Jose Gimenez, midfielder Saul Niguez and striker, Fernando Torres saved their blushes and put them back on winning ways after their loss to Barcelona last weekend.
The Madrid team are level on points with Barcelona but the Catalans have two games in hand. However, Simeone's men are above local rivals, Real Madrid, by four points as they head into the weekend.
Fernando Torres, who rejoined his former club the last summer, scored his 100th goal at the Vincente Calderon. As Atletico go from strength to strength, the Spanish striker seems to adapt and improve.
Bayer Leverkusen 0 – 0 Bayern Munich
Runaway Bundesliga champions, Bayern Munich, struggled to get through Bayer Leverkusen's rock-solid defense over the course of ninety minutes thereby failing to win only their third game in the twenty they've played so far this season.
Julian Brandt come incredibly close to scoring for the home side but his effort was just shy of the post. Soon-to-be Manchester City manager, Pep Guardiola, had left Thomas Muller on the bench but brought him on to make difference late in the game. The World Cup winner had no answer to the staunch defense Bayer Leverkusen posed.
Although Bayern bossed possession 63% to 37%, they had only one shot on target from 9 overall shots, while Bayer had 2 shots on target despite having less of the ball.
With Borussia Dortmund also drawing earlier in the day, this was Bayern's ground to fortify their already-impressive lead in the Bundesliga but will now have to do so when they travel to FC Augsburg in two weeks' time.
Stoke City 0 – 3 Everton
Aston Villa 2 – 0 Norwich
Newcastle 1 – 0 West Brom
Swansea 1 – 1 Crystal Palace