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Talking points from European soccer

TALKING points from the weekend in European soccer leagues:

PSV CAN HAVE GREATEST-EVER DUTCH LEAGUE SEASON

PSV Eindhoven clinched the Dutch league title with two games to go when they came from behind to defeat Sparta Rotterdam 4-2 on Sunday, and can now go down as statistically the best team in Eredivisie history.

PSV can match Ajax Amsterdam’s 1971-72 record of 93 points in a single season, adjusted upwards as back then teams only received two points for a win, but must win their final two fixtures against Fortuna Sittard and RKC Waalwijk to do so.

That will also mean they improve on their current +88 goal difference, which is already better than the Ajax team of 52 years ago, who finished on +84.

That Ajax side also lost a single match, the same as PSV this season, with the only team to go through a Dutch league campaign unbeaten the Ajax side of 1994-95, though they finished with 88 points.

SPAIN

REAL CLINCH LEAGUE TITLE. GIRONA, CHAMPIONS LEAGUE SPOT

It was an intense Saturday in Spanish football that ended with two fan bases celebrating historic achievements after substitute Portu climbed off the bench in the second half to score a brace to give Girona a cathartic 4-2 comeback win over Catalonia rivals Barcelona.

The result meant runaway leaders Real Madrid, whose second-stringers beat lowly Cadiz earlier on Saturday, clinched a record-extending 36th LaLiga title with an unassailable lead with four games left.

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It also secured the surprise package of the season Girona a Champions League spot next season, their first qualification to European football ever. They leapfrogged Barcelona into second place in the standings and are in control of their own destiny to secure a top-two finish that would qualify them for the profitable Spanish Super Cup in Saudi Arabia.

FRANCE

METZ FACE RELEGATION AFTER AGONISING RENNES WIN

Metz dropped to 16th after losing 3-2 at home to Rennes on Saturday, leaving them in a potential relegation play-off spot after being promoted last year.

Despite a fine performance, Metz, who took the lead in the first half through goals from Georges Mikautadze and Papa Diallo, could do nothing after Benjamin Bourigeaud’s 74th-minute penalty and an unexpected stoppage-time strike from Arnaud Kalimuendo sealed a 3-2 win for the visitors.

“I don’t know whether I should scream, cry or laugh. I can’t comment. Am I really going to talk to you and tell you what I feel, what’s in my heart? Because if I do, I will immediately buy a ticket to go to the disciplinary committee,” said Metz coach Laszlo Boloni after striker Georges Mikautadze was sent off in the 95th minute for colliding with Kalimuendo.

Metz failed to keep up the pressure on fellow promoted side Le Havre AC with two games remaining in the campaign while also missing out on condemning bottom side Clermont to Ligue 2, who lost 4-1 at AS Monaco.

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By The African Mirror

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