Real Madrid drew at Getafe, Tottenham Hotspur drew at Everton, Arsenal were held by Fulham, Inter Milan drew at Napoli and Juventus lost to Atalanta in a weekend that was dominated by European football’s ‘elite’ outside the field of play.
On the field, Chelsea beat Manchester City to set up an FA Cup final date with Leicester City, who beat Southampton. Barcelona dismissed Athletic Bilbao 4-0 to lift the Copa del Rey. A last-gasp winner for Paris Saint-Germain and a draw for Lille means the latter lead Ligue 1 by just a point.
By The Numbers has the best stats from the weekend’s action:
Leicester have never defeated Chelsea in the FA Cup (0W, 7L, 2D) — including a 1-0 quarterfinal loss last season.
This will be Leicester’s 5th FA Cup final. They have, in fact, appeared in the most FA Cup finals among teams that have not won the title. They are also the only top-flight winner never to have won the FA Cup.
Chelsea have reached their 15th FA Cup Final. They are the third club to appear in four FA Cup Finals over a five-season span (1882-86 Blackburn Rovers, 2001-05 Arsenal).
Leicester City have reached their first FA Cup final since 1969, a gap of 52 years, the longest between finals since Portsmouth and Cardiff went 69 years and 81 years, respectively, before facing one another in 2008.
In returning to the Premier League, Norwich City have tied the record for most PL promotions with five (level with West Bromwich Albion).
Having been relegated with six games remaining, Sheffield United have suffered the joint-earliest relegation in PL history, alongside Ipswich Town (1994-95), Derby County (2007-08) and Huddersfield Town (2018-19).
No PL side has dropped more points from winning positions this season than Tottenham Hotspur (20, level with Brighton).
On a more positive note for Spurs — Only Alan Shearer (7) and Sergio Aguero (6) have scored 20+ goals in more Premier League seasons than Harry Kane (5 – level with Thierry Henry).
Copa del Rey
This was Ronald Koeman’s second title as manager in Spanish football (won 2007-08 Copa del Rey with Valencia).
Barcelona have extended their own record for most Copa del Rey titles — this is their 31st, eight more than any other team.
All five goals in the PSG-Saint-Etienne game were scored after the 75th minute. It was only the second time this season that a game in Europe’s top five leagues had five goals scored after the 75th minute. The other was Reims at Lens on November 8.
Juventus have dropped points in 13 Serie A games this season (5 losses, 8 draws), the club’s most since 2011-12, when they drew 15 games (0 losses).
Erling Haaland snapped a seven-game goalless streak (across all competitions for club and country) with a brace against Werder Bremen. This had been the longest he had gone without scoring since 2016 — when he played for Bryne in the Norwegian second division.
Champions League (W)
PSG women have knocked out five-time defending UEFA Women’s Champions League winners Lyon in the quarters. PSG was also the last team to knock Lyon out in the UWCL (2015 R16).
PSG and Chelsea have now made the Champions League semifinals on both the men’s and women’s sides this season. The WUCL semis are Bayern Munich vs. Chelsea and PSG vs Barcelona.
For Juventus, it’s truly no Cristiano Ronaldo, no party. For Barcelona, the party’s alive and kicking when Lionel Messi is in this kind of form.
Juventus are yet to win a Serie A game this season in which Ronaldo has not played (1L, 3D).
Messi (9) now has the most goals in Copa del Rey finals — his brace helping ease Telmo Zarra (8) off the top spot. This was Messi’s 10th Copa del Rey final appearance.
Messi has now scored at least 30 goals (at club level) for the 13th consecutive season.
This was Messi’s 35th title with Barcelona — he already holds the record for most in club history (10 La Liga, 8 Spanish Super Cups, 7 Copa del Rey, 4 Champions Leagues, 3 Club World Cups and 3 UEFA Super Cup). Next in line are Andres Iniesta (32), Gerard Pique and Sergio Busquets (both 30).
This, though, is the number that will perhaps stick out most from this weekend.
The number of clubs that are the founding members of the Super League — AC Milan, Arsenal , Atletico Madrid, Chelsea, Barcelona, Inter Milan, Juventus, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United, Real Madrid and Tottenham Hotspur.
(Stats courtesy ESPN’s Stats & Information Group)
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