European Football Saturday Round-up

We round up the best of the footballing action across selected leagues in Europe.

Football News: Gary Hooper, Celtic

Scotland's Clydesdale Bank Premier League

Celtic powered on at the top of the Clydesdale Bank Premier League standings with a 4-0 victory over Ross County at Parkhead.

All four goals came during a 24-minute spell at the start of the second half with Gary Hooper netting a brace in-between efforts from Scott Brown and substitute James Forrest.

The victory leaves pacesetters Celtic seven points clear of Inverness, who climbed back into second place with a 4-1 home win over Dundee.

Billy McKay continued his rich goalscoring streak with a double, netting the opener from the penalty spot before taking advantage of some slack play from the visitors to put Caley Thistle 3-1 up just after the break and take his tally for the season to 18 goals.

The former Northampton striker has now netted in seven consecutive matches and has seven goals in his last three games, topping the SPL scoring charts with 15 league strikes.

Caley Thistle's other goals came from Owain Tudur Jones and Andrew Shinnie with Dundee's reply coming from Nicky Riley, who had briefly made it 1-1 in the first half.

The day's other SPL match saw yet another player collect a brace as Niall McGinn's second-half double earned Aberdeen a 2-0 win over St Johnstone at a storm-lashed Pittodrie.

French Ligue 1

Lyon moved level on points with Ligue 1 leaders Paris St Germain after a comfortable 3-0 win over Nice at the Stade de Gerland tonight.

Goals from Lisandro Lopez and Anthony Reveillere either side of half-time put the title hopefuls on course for victory while Bafetimbi Gomis' penalty sealed a comfortable victory.

It was an unhappy return to Lyon for former boss Claude Puel whose side ended the match with 10 men after David Ospina was sent off in the build-up to the Gomis spot-kick.

Lyon's Dejan Lovren saw red after picking up a second yellow late on in what was the only negative of the night for Remi Garde's men.

Rennes go into the forthcoming two-week winter break in the top four following a 4-2 triumph at Ajaccio in a match which was delayed by 10 minutes after their fourth goal sparked a pitch invasion.

Julien Feret struck from an indirect free-kick in the penalty area after goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa handled Carl Medjani's back-pass but a section of Ajaccio supporters, angered by the taking of the free-kick, stormed from the stand to protest, forcing referee Ruddy Buquet to suspend the game until order was restored.

Rennes had twice come from behind in the first half, Feret and Romain Alessandrini equalising after goals from Adrian Mutu and Fousseni Diawara. Cheick Diarra put them ahead for the first time before Feret's controversial clincher.

Bastia won by the same scoreline, with three goals in the opening half hour proving decisive against rock-bottom Nancy.

Jerome Rothen, Anthony Modeste and Sambou Yatabare were all on the scoresheet in the early stages before Benjamin Moukandjo clawed one back for the visitors.

Modeste's second all but sealed victory for Bastia although Nancy, whose run of five consecutive 1-1 draws came to an end, enjoyed a late consolation when Andre Luiz netted.

Defending champions Montpellier saw a run of three straight wins emphatically halted by a 4-1 loss at Lille.

A Daniel Congre own goal and further strikes from Dimitri Payet, Nolan Roux and Ryan Mendes boosted Lille's European aspirations.

Souleymane Camara netted a late goal for the visitors, who had Younes Belhanda sent off when they were 2-0 down just before half-time.

Reims were denied a first Ligue 1 win since early October as Pedrinho struck at the death to rescue a 2-2 draw for Lorient, whose six-match winning streak came to an end.

Visitors Reims took the lead through Odair Fortes and went ahead again - after Maxime Barthelme had levelled for Lorient - thanks to Gaetan Courtet but Pedrinho ensured the spoils were shared.

Bordeaux's goalless stalemate with Troyes, who are six points adrift of safety, was their fifth draw in succession.

Dutch Eredivisie

PSV Eindhoven reclaimed top spot in the Eredivisie standings with a 6-1 away mauling of lowly NAC Breda tonight.

Jeremain Lens set PSV on their way with a brace in the 11th and 17th minutes and, after NAC had halved the deficit through Jordy Buijs, the visitors made it 3-1 just before the half-hour thanks to Georgino Wijnaldum.

Mathias Jorgensen further extended PSV's advantage in the 37th minute before second-half goals from Luciano Narsingh and his replacement Jurgen Locadia sealed the victory.

The result lifts PSV back above FC Twente on goal difference with their title rivals having beaten AZ Alkmaar last night.

Vitesse Arnhem missed the chance to replace Ajax in the top three ahead of the champions' match with FC Utrecht tomorrow as they were beaten 2-1 at Heerenveen.

Goals from Heerenveen duo Filip Djuricic (30 minutes) and Alfred Finnbogason (50) sandwiched an equaliser from Guram Kashia (39) as stumbling Vitesse were left with just one point from their last three games.

Seventh-placed NEC Nijmegen are also going through a bad patch and their winless run stretched to four matches after they fell to a 2-0 defeat at ADO Den Haag.

NEC were reduced to 10 men in the 22nd minute when Kevin Conboy was handed his marching orders and ADO took full advantage through a brace from Jens Toornstra (33 and 86).

Tonight's other Eredivisie match saw Heracles draw 1-1 at home with PEC Zwolle, the hosts taking a 15th-minute lead through Samuel Armenteros only to be pegged back by Youness Mokhtar's equaliser 12 minutes later.

Turkish Super Lig

Fourth-placed Fenerbache were shocked 3-1 by Karabukspor in the Super Lig.

Ilhan Parlak gave the visitors a 38th-minute lead before they doubled their advantage three minutes later through Ahmet Ozek.

Lomana Tresor LuaLua made the game safe in the 69th minute before Dirk Kuyt scored a consolation 15 minutes from the end.

Istanbul Buyuksehir moved five points clear of the drop zone after a 2-0 victory at Kasimpasa.

Cameroon striker Pierre Webo put them ahead from the spot three minutes into the second half before Samuel Holmen secured the win after 69 minutes.

Belgian Jupiler League

Zulte-Waregem remain five points adrift of Jupiler Pro League leaders Anderlecht after being held to a 1-1 draw away to Mons today.

Both goals came late in the first half, with M'Baye Leye quick to respond to Mustapha Jarju's opener and earn Zulte a point.

Anderlecht, though, still have a comfortable cushion which they can extend further should they beat Genk tomorrow.

At the other end of the table, bottom pair Cercle Brugge and Lierse kept themselves in touch of those above them thanks to 2-2 draws against Waasland-Beveren and Leuven respectively.

Cercle, though, threw away a two-goal lead given to them by Tim Smolders' brace as Kassim Doumbia and Christophe Lepoint hit back for Waasland in the final five minutes.

And Lierse twice led, through Kostadin Khazurov and a Mohamed El-Gabbas penalty, only for Leuven to level on each occasion - first through a spot-kick of their own from Ebrahim Savaneh and then Karel Geraerts' 77th-minute strike.

Beerschot, one place above the relegation play-off places, had Alpaslan Ozturk sent off as they lost 2-0 at home to KV Mechelen. David Destorme and Abdul-Yakuni Iddi scored the goals either side of the dismissal.

Charleroi picked up an impressive 2-1 win away to Gent, substitute Viktor Bopp with the winner after Mohammed Aoulad's opener was cancelled out by Ilombe M'Boyo.



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