Berlin, Feb 17 (AP/UNB) — Claudio Pizarro scored in the sixth minute of injury time to salvage a 1-1 draw for Werder Bremen at Hertha Berlin and become the oldest ever goal-scorer in the Bundesliga on Saturday.
Pizarro, aged 40 years and 136 days, broke the previous record held by Bremen midfielder Miroslav "Mirko" Votava (40 years, 121 days) from 1996, when he fired his free kick through a host of Hertha legs and past the helpless Rune Jarstein in goal.
It looked like Davie Selke's first-half goal against his former side was enough for Hertha to win, but Pizarro came on as a substitute with half an hour remaining and had the final say.
The veteran Peru striker also became the first to score in 21 different calendar years in the Bundesliga with his 195th league goal.
The goal denied Hertha sixth place and kept 10th-placed Bremen one point behind the home side.
Stuttgart's hopes of a reprieve after another week of turbulence went unanswered as Leipzig won their game 3-1 to consolidate fourth place.
Danish forward Yussuf Poulsen scored twice to help Leipzig move one point below Borussia Moenchengladbach and stay six clear of Wolfsburg, which defeated Mainz 2-0 at home.
Stuttgart sought its first win in seven games to ease the pressure on coach Markus Weinzierl. Weinzierl kept his job after last weekend's 3-0 loss at Fortuna Duesseldorf, but sporting director Michael Reschke was told to go on Tuesday.
Former Aston Villa and Germany midfielder Thomas Hitzlsperger, who helped Stuttgart win the Bundesliga in 2007, was appointed in Reschke's place.
Stuttgart had the worst defense in the league (47 goals conceded), in contrast to Leipzig (18), which duly scored with the game's first attack in the sixth minute when Yussuf Poulsen took advantage of some lax defending to score from close range.
But Steven Zuber equalized from the penalty spot 10 minutes later after the video referee intervened when Leipzig captain Willi Orban appeared to push Mario Gomez and deflect the ball out of play with his hand.
The home side pushed for more — Leipzig 'keeper Peter Gulacsi made a great save to deny Santiago Ascacibar in the second half — before Marcel Sabitzer restored the visitors' lead from a free kick in the 68th.
Midfielder Tyler Adams then won a challenge before setting Poulsen through to seal it in the 74th. It was Adams' first assist in his fourth game since his winter transfer from the New York Red Bulls.
Schalke, which hosts Manchester City in the Champions League on Wednesday, was held at home by Freiburg to 0-0.
Schalke midfielder Suat Serdar was shown a straight red card minutes before the break for a studs-up lunge at Freiburg captain Mike Frantz, who needed treatment.
Both sides finished with 10 men after Freiburg's Christian Guenter was shown his second yellow card in injury time for colliding with Mark Uth.
Hoffenheim defeated Hannover 3-0, though the home side should have won by more.
Barcelona, Feb 17 (AP/UNB) — Lionel Messi had a penalty saved after scoring from the spot as Barcelona struggled to end a run of poor results before it turns to the Champions League knockout rounds.
Messi's first penalty opportunity proved good enough in an uninspiring 1-0 victory over Valladolid at Camp Nou in the Spanish league on Saturday. But Barcelona's all-time leading scorer had a second spot kick stopped by goalie Jordi Masip.
Barcelona, which had drawn three games in a row across all competitions, visits Lyon on Tuesday in the opening leg of their Champions League round-of-16 tie.
Messi and his teammates missed chances to put away Valladolid, and when they did arrive Masip was up to the challenge.
Messi beat Masip with a perfectly executed spot kick two minutes before halftime. But Masip, a former Barcelona backup, smothered his second strike that Messi sent to the same left side of the goalie.
Masip said he didn't learn any tricks to stopping Messi when they used to practice together.
"I don't know, I (never saved) many of his penalties," Masip said. "He took the first one very well, but I was able to stop the second one. It is bittersweet. We had the chance to take a draw."
Barcelona increased its league lead to seven points over Atletico, which moved past Real Madrid into second place before its crosstown rival plays on Sunday.
Atletico's 1-0 win at Rayo Vallecano thanks to a late goal by Antoine Griezmann broke a run of consecutive losses before Atletico hosts Juventus on Wednesday in the Champions League.
Messi took his league-leading tally to 22 goals with his 30th in all competitions this season.
Otherwise, it was a night of missed chances and erred passes by Barcelona.
"We didn't play well. Getting back to winning is of course positive, but if we don't correct our mistakes we will pay for it on Tuesday," said Gerard Pique, who sustained Barcelona in defense and earned the penalty that Messi did convert two minutes before halftime.
"If we don't play the ball quickly and have more possession (...) we become a weaker team. We know it and our opponents know it."
Coach Ernesto Valverde gave Kevin-Prince Boateng his second start since joining Barcelona last month as Luis Suarez and Philippe Coutinho rested until midway through the second half.
Besides saving Messi's spot kick, Masip also made an excellent one-handed save to parry a Messi volley, and denied Suarez one-on-one.
"We had the chance with the second penalty to put it away, but Masip played superbly and we had to sweat it out until the end," Valverde said. "We needed to pass the ball more quickly in the first half. But if we generate the scoring opportunities like we had in the second half they will eventually go in."
GRIEZMANN GETS WIN
Griezmann's late goal was about all Atletico could muster in attack to edge crosstown minnow Vallecano.
Diego Costa played the final half hour for Atletico in his first action since recovering from a left-foot injury that required surgery in December.
Atletico, runner-up in the Champions League in 2014 and 2016, is eager to reach the June 1 final hosted at its home stadium, the Wanda Metropolitano.
But Cristiano Ronaldo's Juventus is standing in the way.
"It was fundamental to win here," said Morata, who used to play for Juventus and helped it reach the 2015 Champions League final. "Now Wednesday's match is almost here and nothing else matters, because the Champions League trumps all the rest."
Levante won at Celta Vigo 4-1 and piled pressure on coach Miguel Cardoso. Celta has lost seven of its last eight games to leave it one point above the relegation zone.
Real Sociedad eased past Leganes 3-0 at home.
Milan, Feb 17 (AP/UNB) — Krzysztof Piatek looks to be firing AC Milan back into the Champions League.
The Poland international scored twice as Milan came from behind to beat Atalanta 3-1 in Serie A on Saturday. Piatek has four goals from three league starts since joining Milan from Genoa in January for a reported 35 million euros ($40 million). He also scored two in the Italian Cup for the Rossoneri.
"I always believe in myself and I know that I can always score," Piatek said. "But I admit that six goals in five games is a great number, more than I expected."
Piatek has netted 17 times in Serie A, leaving him just two behind Juventus forward Cristiano Ronaldo on the goalscoring chart.
Milan remained in fourth place and the final Champions League qualifying berth, four points ahead of Atalanta as well as Roma and Lazio, which both have a game in hand.
The Rossoneri are also just one point behind crisis-hit city rival Inter Milan, which hosts Sampdoria on Sunday.
"This team is like a family," Piatek said. "When I arrived everyone was nice to me and I feel good here. I'm scoring and that's important. We work a lot during the week, and we're getting to know each other and our movement's better."
Piatek netted his first goal of the night on the stroke of halftime with an absolutely stunning side-footed volley to level. He didn't even need to look at the goalmouth as he got in front of a defender onto Ricardo Rodriguez's cross.
Atalanta took the lead 12 minutes earlier when Remo Freuler's shot squirmed under Gianluigi Donnarumma's hand and in off the inside of the far post.
Hakan Calhanoglu fired Milan in front 10 minutes after the break with his first goal of the season, and Piatek headed in a corner in the 61st.
Leonardo Pavoletti scored twice to help relegation-threatened Cagliari to its first victory of 2019.
Cagliari came from behind to beat Parma 2-1 and move six points clear of the relegation zone.
Juraj Kucka headed Parma in front five minutes from halftime but Pavoletti bundled in the equalizer in the 66th and headed in what proved to be the winner five minutes from halftime.
Cagliari midfielder Cagliari Joao Pedro was sent off late following two yellow cards in quick succession — the first for a foul on Kucka and the second for dissent immediately after the booking.
Dhaka, Feb 16 (UNB) – Bangladesh will play Pakistan in one of the two opening day matches of the seven-nation SAFF Women’s Championship beginning on March 12 at the Sahid Rangashala in the Nepalese town of Biratnagar.
Hosts Nepal will face Bhutan in the opening match on March 12 at 11:30am local time at the venue. The Bangladesh-Pakistan match kicks off at 3.30pm.
Earlier, Bangladesh was drawn in four-team Group A with Pakistan, Nepal and Bhutan while three-team Group B comprises India, Sri Lanka and the Maldives.
In the remaining group matches, Bangladesh will meet Bhutan on March 14 and hosts Nepal on March 16.
After the group matches, two top teams from each group will play in the semifinals with Group A champions taking on Group B runners-up and Group B champions playing against Group A runners up, both on March 20.
The final will be played on March 22. All the matches will be held in the same venue.
Feni, Feb 16 (UNB) – The 12-team Chattogram Divisional Gold Cup Football Tournament, organized by Chattogram Divisional Sports Association under the auspices of Feni District Sports Association kicked off on Sunday at Bhasha Shaheed Salam Stadium here.
Hosts Feni District will play Brahmanbaria District in the opening match at 3 pm.
Divisional Commissioner of Chattogram MA Mannan will formally inaugurate the meet in the afternoon. Eleven district teams of the division along with Chattogram University team will compete in the tournament.
Deputy of Commissioner of Feni and President of the Feni DSA M Wahiduzzaman disclosed these at a press conference at the Bhasha Shaheed Salam Stadium in Feni on Saturday.
General Secretary of Feni DSA Amir Hossain Bahar also spoke on the occasion.
The champions team will receive a prize money of Tk 1,00,000 while the runners-up team will get Tk 50,000. Moreover, all the 12 teams will get participating money.
Besides, the tournament committee will give man of the match award in every match in addition to the man of the tournament award.
Meanwhile, a grand rally headed by DC M Wahiduzzaman was brought out from in front of the Shaheed Minar in the town on Saturday.