MATCHDAY: Lampard leads Everton back to Chelsea

·3 min read

A look at what’s happening in European soccer on Sunday:


Everton boss Frank Lampard faces Chelsea for the first time since losing his job at Stamford Bridge last year. Everton's spirit and strategy was much improved against Liverpool last weekend, for the first hour anyway. More of the same will be expected against visiting Chelsea, which is coming off a draw at Manchester United on Thursday in the Premier League. Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Yerry Mina return for Everton. Tottenham will welcome Leicester to get its top-four ambition back on track. Leicester is focusing on the Europa Conference League semifinals with Roma, so its focus is less on the Premier League. West Ham's main focus is also on its Europa League semi with Eintracht Frankfurt, which could help visiting Arsenal's bid to consolidate a top-four spot.


The Milan teams continue their battle for the Serie A title as league leader AC Milan welcomes Fiorentina and defending champion Inter Milan visits Udinese. Inter missed the chance to move a point ahead of Milan midweek when it lost a rescheduled match at Bologna 2-1. Second-choice goalkeeper Ionuț Radu was at fault for Bologna’s winner and he may again replace Samir Handanović if the Inter captain does not recover from his injury in time. A win for Juventus at bottom club Venezia would all but secure fourth spot and Champions League soccer. It is eight points ahead of fifth-placed Roma, which hosts Bologna. Empoli welcomes Torino.


Barcelona tries to regain second place when it hosts relegation-threatened Mallorca. The Catalan club saw its slim title hopes end on Saturday when Real Madrid routed Espanyol 4-0 to lift the trophy for the second time in three seasons. Barcelona is a point behind second-placed Sevilla, which was held by Cádiz to 1-1 at home on Friday. Finishing in the top two is important because it secures a place in the lucrative Spanish Super Cup in Saudi Arabia. Mallorca is two points clear of the relegation zone. Real Sociedad, still in the fight for a Champions League spot, visits Rayo Vallecano. Granada, the first team inside the relegation zone, hosts Celta Vigo.


Argentine coach Jorge Sampaoli might rotate when his Marseille hosts Lyon. Marseille has a six-point lead over Rennes and Monaco in the race for second place and will face Dutch side Feyenoord in the second leg of their Europa Conference League semifinal on Thursday. Fourth-placed Monaco will look to extend its winning streak to seven games when it plays Angers. Monaco will be without midfielder Aurelien Tchouameni and defenders Axel Disasi and Vanderson, all suspended. Angers is just four points above the relegation zone and will miss its key attacking player, Sofiane Boufal, whose season is over because of a hamstring injury. Nice can make up ground in the race for European spots with a win at relegation-threatened Bordeaux. Nice’s form has been inconsistent lately but it’s only two points off third place. Bordeaux is six points from safety and has the most porous defense in the league, blowing a 2-0 lead in its last two games. On a 13-game winless streak, bottom side Metz could be relegated when it visits Montpellier. Metz will miss goalkeeper Alexandre Oukidja and defender Jemerson through suspension.


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The Associated Press

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