World Sports News in Brief

Man City ease past 10-man Wolves to cut gap at top

Tuesday, 2019-01-15 07:30:29
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Manchester City's Gabriel Jesus celebrates scoring their first goal with Bernardo Silva - Premier League - Manchester City v Wolverhampton Wanderers - Etihad Stadium, Manchester, Britain - January 14, 2019. (Photo: Action Images via Reuters)
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Gabriel Jesus took his tally to seven goals in three games with a double as Manchester City beat 10-man Wolverhampton Wanderers 3-0 to cut Premier League leaders Liverpool’s advantage to four points on Monday.

After back-to-back league defeats during the Christmas fixtures, City have now won five matches in a row in all competitions, racking up 24 goals in the process, and look primed to give chase to Juergen Klopp’s Liverpool. With Tottenham Hotspur losing on Sunday, it now looks a two-horse race to win the Premier League with Liverpool on 57 points and City on 53 from 22 games. Tottenham have 48.

* La Liga champions Barcelona became the first soccer team to spend over half a billion euros in wages after their staff costs shot up by 42% over the past year, according to a study by KPMG. Paris St Germain have the second highest wage bill on the KPMG list at €332 million, an increase of 20%.

* Atletico Madrid defender Stefan Savic is set to miss up to four weeks, according to Spanish media reports, after he suffered a hamstring injury against Levante on Sunday.

* Argentina have appointed 80-year-old former coach Cesar Luis Menotti as director of national teams, the Argentine Football Association said on Monday. Menotti, who led Argentina to their first World Cup title in 1978, will be charged with overseeing the 10-year plan unveiled last November to finding a "footballing identity" for the two-times World Cup winners.

* Benfica's interim coach Bruno Lage has been given the job on a permanent basis, club president Luis Filipe Vieira said on Monday.

* Real Madrid have confirmed that striker Karim Benzema broke the little finger on his right hand during their 2-1 win away to Real Betis on Sunday night. Benzema suffered the injury when he fell badly in the first half and didn't reappear at the start of the second, when he was replaced by B-team forward Cristo Gonzalez.

* An emotional and drained Andy Murray left open the door to a return to Melbourne Park after falling to Roberto Bautista Agut in a gut-wrenching, five-set epic in the first round of the Australian Open on Monday. Having said the tournament could be his last as a professional due to his painful hip, Murray played as if it was indeed his swansong, rallying from two sets down before being denied 6-4, 6-4, 6-7(5), 6-7(4), 6-2.

* Caroline Wozniacki launched her title defence at the Australian Open with a comfortable 6-3 6-4 win against Belgian Alison Van Uytvanck in the first round on Monday. Wozniacki sealed the match with a forehand winner on her third matchpoint and will next meet Sweden's Johanna Larsson, who progressed after Vera Lapko of Belarus retired while trailing 7-6(5) 3-0.

* Simona Halep begins her Australian Open campaign against Kaia Kanepi on Tuesday in a rematch of their US Open meeting which the world number one lost in straights sets. Serena Williams, who resumes her quest for a record-equalling 24th Grand Slam title, plays unseeded German Tatjana Maria at Rod Laver Arena in the second match on the same day.

Reuters, Xinhua