It was business as usual on the continent this weekend: Bayern Munich regained their rightful place on top of the Bundesliga, Real Madrid didn’t win a derby match, Milan played terribly and the usual suspects all scored.
Here are seven of the things you may have missed from this weekend’s action.
Granada Go Second
In 2016/17, after years of somehow just avoiding relegation from La Liga, Granada finally faced the drop. They went down with a whimper too, collecting just four wins and amassing a measly total of 20 points.
Two years later, after some rebuilding, they’re back in the Spanish top-flight and they couldn’t have hoped for a better start.
Having taken the scalp of Barcelona the week prior, Granada went into their fixture against bottom side Leganes with plenty of confidence and duly earned a 1-0 win.
It was their fourth win of the season and it lifted them into second place, above the likes of Atletico Madrid and Barcelona and just one point below first-placed Real Madrid.
It’s still early days of course, but you could forgive Granada fans for already dreaming of European football next season.
It Just Isn’t Working, Is it Vincent?
Anderlecht’s decision to appoint Vincent Kompany – a man with no coaching experience – as their new manager certainly raised plenty of eyebrows.
So how is Kompany doing at Belgium’s most decorated club? Pretty terribly, to be honest. Anderlecht
Meanwhile at Anderlecht: unhappy ultras waiting at the main gate after a 6 out of 27 for Vincent Kompany’s team and a disappointing 0-0 draw against Waasland-Beveren. pic.twitter.com/wJ9bmxKh7p
— Kristof Terreur (@HLNinEngeland) September 29, 2019
A home fixture against lowly Waasland-Beveren represented an opportunity for Kompany’s side to get some points on the board, but it wasn’t to be as they could only draw 0-0. The failure to win means they are now eight points off the Championship play-off places, the bare minimum for a side like Anderlecht.
It’s easy to feel sorry for Kompany, who seems like a thoroughly good man off the pitch, but it’s becoming clear that this opportunity came too soon for the 33-year-old.
The ‘Banter Era’ Continues
Once one of Europe’s most elite clubs, Milan have been something of a joke for nearly a decade.
Over the summer, they were kicked out of the Europa League for FFP violations and lost a talented coach in Gennaro Gattuso. They appointed Marco Giampaolo as his replacement, a smart appointment on the face of it.
But after six games, Milan have lost on four occasions, their worst start to the season since 1938-39. In the process, Giampaolo’s side have scored just four goals, with two of these being penalties.
A pathetic home 3-1 loss to Fiorentina on Sunday leaves I Rossoneri just one point above the relegation places. Bleak times indeed.
Inter Make it Six From Six
Over at Inter, who endured their own banter era for a while, the future is looking much brighter. Antonio Conte’s side are currently top of Serie A, having won all six of their league matches.
Their 3-1 win over Sampdoria on Saturday felt very much like business as usual. Goals from Stefano Sensi, Alexis Sanchez and Roberto Gagliardini were enough to see off I Doria, who themselves are bottom of Serie A.
The only man who can tear down Juventus’ monopoly, is the very man who created it.
Antonio Conte’s Inter Milan pic.twitter.com/aQreeiUW6j
— 홵횘횘횝횋횊횕횕 횃횑횎횛횊횙횢 (@FootballYannick) September 30, 2019
Sanchez was given his first league start in the game and it was, safe to say, unforgettable. He bagged a brace in just two minutes, only for the first goal to be later given to Sensi, before receiving a second yellow early in the second half for diving.
Lewandowksi Hits Double Figures
Having terrorised Bundesliga defences for nearly a decade now, the 31-year-old Robert Lewandowski shows no signs of slowing down.
His goal in Bayern Munich’s 3-2 defeat of Paderborn on Saturday with his tenth Bundesliga goal of the season and we’re only six games in.
Robert Lewandowski became the first player in Bundesliga history to reach double figures after 6 matches, overtaking Jupp Heynckes, Gerd Müller, Peter Meyer and Lothar Emmerich who all scored 9 goals after 6 games. pic.twitter.com/YCQ7rdL600
— Bayern & Germany (@iMiaSanMia) September 28, 2019
The Polish striker has scored in each of Bayern’s league games this season, including getting a hat-trick against Schalke and braces against Hertha Berlin and FC Cologne.
Could this be Lewandowski’s most prolific season yet?
The First of Many?
Mario Balotelli got his first Brescia goal on Sunday, scoring
What a day for Mario Balotelli!
✔️ First Serie A goal in 1468 days
✔️ First goal for Brescia
✔️ First Serie A goal v Napoli
…And walks out with daughter Pia pic.twitter.com/YP7lQKbbpv
— Adriano Del Monte (@adriandelmonte) September 29, 2019
Hopefully, this will be the first of many for Balotelli, as he looks to help Brescia avoid relegation this season.