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United, Arsenal drop points

Manchester: A perfect header from substitute Shaun Goater three minutes from time earned Manchester City a 1-1 Premier League draw to cost Manchester United the chance of going joint top on Sunday.

Meanwhile, Frenchman Laurent Robert powered Newcastle’s equaliser to hold leaders Arsenal to a 1-1 draw at home.

Sylvain Wiltord slipped a perfectly-weighted through ball to his French team mate Thierry Henry and the league’s leading scorer converted expertly.

It was Henry’s 18th league goal of the season.

After the break, Newcastle upped their work rate and levelled the score when Robert collected the ball in the middle of the Arsenal half, shrugged off two challenges and struck left footed into the corner of the net after 53 minutes.

Meanwhile, Ruud van Nistelrooy’s 18th-minute strike put United ahead against their city rivals. But a neat chip from Shaun Wright-Phillips set up Goater to bury a firm header into the top corner to level things up.

United took the lead when captain Roy Keane threaded a through ball to Ryan Giggs on the right and his pacey low cross was guided home at an angle for Van Nistelrooy’s 12th league goal of the season and 63rd in 84 games for United.

Juventus win

Meanwhile, Italian champions Juventus kept up the pressure on AC Milan and Inter Milan at the top of Serie A with a 1-0 win over Empoli in Turin on Saturday.

In the seventh minute, David Trezeguet gave Juventus the lead from the penalty spot.

In an earlier game on Saturday, goals by Marek Jankulovski and Roberto Muzzi consigned new Piacenza coach Luigi Cagni to a 2-1 defeat against Udinese.

Real defeat Betis

Real Madrid’s big guns produced an impressive display of attacking football to come from a goal behind and earn an emphatic 4-1 home win over Real Betis Saturday.

Goals from Raul, Luis Figo, Ronaldo Zinedine Zidane allowed the European champions to sweep their way past the Andalucians, who had taken the lead through Fernando late in the first half.

The win moves Real within a point of league leaders Real Sociedad, while Betis remain fifth despite their defeat.

A Jorge Lopez penalty gave Villarreal a deserved 1-0 home win against Valladolid. th in the standings. (Reuters)

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