Lionel Messi’s penalty kick in stoppage time of a pulsating 3-2 win at Valencia on Saturday moved Barcelona atop the Spanish league, but the victory came at a cost: Andrés Iniesta sustained ligament damage in his right knee that could keep him out for several months.
Messi also scored in the 22nd minute, a goal that was allowed to stand even though Luis Suárez had strayed offside. Valencia responded after halftime with goals by Munir El Haddadi and Rodrigo in a six-minute stretch.
Suárez tied the game in the 62nd minute, and deep in stoppage time, he was upended inside the penalty box by Aymen Abdennour. Valencia goalkeeper Diego Alves had already saved three penalty kicks this season, but Messi sent the ball into the bottom corner to secure a vital 3 points for Barcelona in the title race. It was his sixth goal in three games since he returned from a groin injury.
“Messi took responsibility in the best moment, and it is a glorious feeling for us,” Coach Luis Enrique said.
The game was only 14 minutes old when Iniesta, Barcelona’s captain, was carried from the field in tears while holding his right knee, which had buckled under a heavy challenge from Enzo Pérez. Enrique was furious with the referee because Pérez was not given even a yellow card.
AROUND THE PREMIER LEAGUE Arsenal moved atop the standings even as its six-match winning streak ended in a 0-0 draw with visiting Middlesbrough. Leicester’s unbeaten run at home stretched to 20 league games with a 3-1 win over Crystal Palace. Tottenham remains the league’s only unbeaten team, but its second-half pressure failed to produce a goal in a 0-0 draw at Bournemouth. Sadio Mané and Philippe Coutinho scored as host Liverpool beat West Brom, 2-1. Swansea earned its first shutout since its opener, but Coach Bob Bradley still awaits his first win with the team after a 0-0 draw against visiting Watford. Scott Arfield drilled in a rebound off the crossbar in the 90th minute as host Burnley beat Everton, 2-1. Winston Reid scored in the fourth minute of injury time to give host West Ham a 1-0 win over Sunderland. Xherdan Shaqiri had two superb strikes as visiting Stoke beat Hull, 2-0.
AROUND EUROPE Vedad Ibisevic and Niklas Stark scored as host Hertha Berlin defeated previously unbeaten Cologne, 2-1. In other games in Germany, Douglas Costa scored in his first start of the season as Bayern Munich beat visiting Borussia Mönchengladbach, 2-0, and Borussia Dortmund salvaged a 3-3 draw at lowly Ingolstadt when Christian Pulisic scored the equalizer in the final minute. In Italy, the teenage midfielder Manuel Locatelli scored a spectacular second-half goal as A.C. Milan made a return to prominence with a 1-0 win over visiting Juventus.
Promising Start to Skier’s Title Defense
Lara Gut of Switzerland won the opening race of the World Cup season with a victory in the giant slalom on the Rettenbach glacier of Sölden, Austria. Gut, who won the overall World Cup last season, clocked 2 minutes 23.02 seconds over two runs to finish 1.44 seconds ahead of Mikaela Shiffrin of the United States and 1.93 seconds ahead of Marta Bassino of Italy. (AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE)
WAGNER WINS SKATE AMERICA Ashley Wagner won the Skate America women’s title, edging Mariah Bell, her California training partner, in Hoffman Estates, Ill. Shoma Uno of Japan topped the men’s short program earlier, followed by the Americans Adam Rippon and Jason Brown.
Russian Claims Last Spot in WTA Finals
Svetlana Kuznetsova of Russia secured the last of eight singles spots at the WTA Finals after beating Daria Gavrilova, 6-2, 6-1, in Moscow to retain her Kremlin Cup title. Kuznetsova, the top seed at the Kremlin Cup, saved six of the seven break points she faced and converted six of her eight opportunities to beat the 38th-ranked Gavrilova in 72 minutes. Gavrilova was seeking her first WTA title.
Although Kuznetsova, 31, was a fixture at the season-ending finals for much of her early 20s, she had not qualified for the event since 2009.
A TOP SEED FALLS The unseeded Argentine Diego Schwartzman upset top-seeded David Goffin, 7-5, 2-6, 7-5, to reach the European Open final in Antwerp, Belgium. Schwartzman will face third-seeded Richard Gasquet, who staged an impressive comeback to beat Kyle Edmund, 3-6, 7-5, 6-2.
Devils Get Comeback Win Over Wild
Taylor Hall scored 29 seconds into overtime, and the Devils rallied to beat visiting Minnesota, 2-1.
P. A. Parenteau tied the score late in the third period, and Cory Schneider made 28 saves for the Devils. They won at home for the second time in two games and ended the Wild’s three-game winning streak.
Joel Eriksson Ek scored for Minnesota in his N.H.L. debut, and Devan Dubnyk made 30 saves.
PREDATORS CRUSH PENGUINS Kevin Fiala and Viktor Arvidsson scored two goals each to lead illness-depleted Nashville to a 5-1 victory over visiting Pittsburgh. Calle Jarnkrok also scored, and P. K. Subban and Filip Forsberg each added two assists for Nashville.
CANADIENS KNOCK OFF RIVALS Carey Price stopped 19 shots in his second start, and Brian Gallagher and Phillip Danault had second-period goals to lift the Montreal Canadiens to a 4-2 win over the Bruins in Boston.
RED WINGS TOP SHARKS Jimmy Howard made 30 saves and Gustav Nyquist scored twice, helping Detroit beat visiting San Jose, 3-0. Andreas Athanasiou also scored for Detroit, which won its fourth straight after losing its first two games of the season.
After Nine Birdies, a Share of the Lead
One year after announcing his retirement from full-time golf, Anders Hansen took a share of the lead at the Portugal Masters, shooting a nine-under-par 62 in the third round in Vilamoura. Hansen, who made nine birdies, and Mikko Korhonen led by one stroke.
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