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Barcelona and Juventus earn narrow 2-1 league victories as Mario Balotelli returns

Barcelona up to fourth, while Juventus go top of Serie A

Antoine Griezmann
Image: Antoine Griezmann celebrates his goal with Ousmane Dembele

Barcelona bounced back from a shock 2-0 defeat to Granada with a 2-1 home win over Villarreal to move up to fourth in the La Liga table.

Antoine Griezmann and Arthur got the first-half goals at the Nou Camp as Barcelona moved to within a point of top trio Granada, Athletic Bilbao and Real Madrid.

Ernesto Valverde's side did not have it all their own way as Santi Cazorla pulled a goal back for Villarreal just before half-time.

But that was as close as the visitors came to registering another shock result against Barcelona with the defeat leaving Villarreal eighth in the table.

Granada still lead La Liga on 11 points, while Barcelona are fourth, but just a point behind on 10.

Juventus came from behind to go top of Serie A with a 2-1 win at Brescia on Tuesday as Mario Balotelli marked his return to Italian football.

during the Serie A match between Brescia Calcio and Juventus at Stadio Mario Rigamonti on September 24, 2019 in Brescia, Italy.
Image: Miralem Pjanic scored for Juventus in the victory

Alfredo Donnarumma gave the hosts an early lead at the Stadio Mario Rigamonti but Juve hit back through a Jhon Chancellor own goal and a Miralem Pjanic strike either side of the break.

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Balotelli made his debut for his hometown club after completing a four-match suspension that he was handed at Olympique de Marseille last season, while the visitors were without Cristiano Ronaldo as he recovers from injury.

Maurizio Sarri's side edged an entertaining encounter to continue their unbeaten start to the season and move on to 13 points at the summit of the table, one ahead of Inter Milan.

Mario Balotelli Brescia Juventus
Image: Mario Balotelli made his comeback on Tuesday night

However, Inter can return to the top by beating Lazio at San Siro on Wednesday, while a draw would also be enough to send Antonio Conte's side top on goal difference.

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