This week, two in-form marksmen jostle for position with Dutch and Kenyan success stories and a ten-goal spectacular in France as FIFA.com again looks at the numbers behind the results.
goals divided equally between Lyon and Marseille gave these French giants the joint-highest draw in Ligue 1 history, and a share in a 77-year-old record. Perhaps surprisingly, the 5-5 tie at the Stade Gerland on Sunday was the fifth time this scoreline has been served up by France's top flight since its inception in 1932. The first came on 11 December in that inaugural year, thanks to Cannes and SC Fives, the forerunners to Lille, and was followed in 1933, 1937 and 1957 by Club Francois-Racing Club de Paris, Cannes-Red Star Olympique and Nice-Lille respectively. Yet while OL and OM might have become the first sides in over half a century to play out such a dramatic draw, theirs was not the only ten-goal show of the past week, even if the other - Latvia's Liepajas Metalurgs' 8-2 win over PFK/Daugava - proved to be a little more one-sided.
months and 29 matches have now passed since PSV last tasted defeat, leaving the Dutch giants within touching distance of a new club record. Indeed, only two more matches without loss would see Fred Rutten's side equal the 31-match unbeaten run racked up over 1974 and 1975 by a team that went on to win two successive Eredivisie championships. The nearness of this milestone will perhaps make up for missing out on another record. After all, by allowing FC Copenhagen's Jesper Gronkjaer to score from the penalty spot in a 1-1 UEFA Europa League draw in Denmark last Thursday, PSV surrendered a sequence of clean sheets that, at seven matches, fell one short of the all-time club record.
minutes was all Davor Vugrinec needed to score the week's fastest hat-trick, and yet somehow the former Croatia international still ended up on the losing side. The NK Zagreb forward, 34, struck three times between minutes 35 and 41 to overturn 2-1 and 3-2 deficits, only for NK Osijek to run out comfortable 5-3 winners in the end. This failure of NK Zagreb to match Vugrinec's form has been a feature of the 1. HNL season. While the former Lecce star, a veteran of the 2002 FIFA World Cup Korea/Japan™, has scored six times in his last four appearances, the Pjesnici (Poets) remain anchored to the bottom of the table, having lost 11 of their 14 games thus far.
goals in as many Jupiler League matches have underlined Romelu Lukaku's status as one of the most promising young talents in European football. The 16-year-old Anderlecht prodigy was reported to be on the radar of some of the continent's biggest clubs even before this impressive recent run, which continued on Sunday when he came off the bench to seal a 2-0 win at Racing Genk. Lukaku, who is of Congolese descent and whose father also enjoyed a distinguished career in Belgium's top flight, has now scored six goals in 11 senior appearances, only five of which have been from the start. There is certainly no doubt that the Belgium U-21 star, who averaged more than a goal per game at youth level, has emerged as a key player in his team's title push, which has taken Les Mauves two and seven points clear of Club Brugge and Standard Liege respectively at the top of the standings.
top-flight season, 1 league title. That is the enviable record with which Nairobi club Sofapaka will emerge from their debut campaign in the Kenyan Premier League. The fledgling outfit, who were founded just five years ago, clinched the championship with a game to spare on Saturday thanks to an emphatic 3-0 win away to Red Berets. The manner of the victory, which left Sofapaka six points clear with a game to spare, represented the culmination of a spectacular season in which the club has earned widespread acclaim for its attacking, attractive brand of football. It also caps a truly meteoric rise, the first warning of which came in 2007 when Sofapak, then a second-tier side, shocked everyone by winning the Kenyan Cup.