BIRMINGHAM, England - Manchester United's injury-hit striker Radamel Falcao marked his return to the starting lineup for the first time since October with a second-half equaliser in Saturday's 1-1 Premier League draw at Aston Villa.
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LONDON - David Silva sparkled for Manchester City with two goals in a 3-0 win over Crystal Palace that wiped out Chelsea's lead at the top of the Premier League table on Saturday and added festive spice to the title race.
BARCELONA - Lionel Messi scored two late goals and Luis Suarez got his first in La Liga as Barcelona crushed struggling Cordoba 5-0 on Saturday to finish the year a point behind leaders Real Madrid. In-form Pedro put Barca ahead after 71 seconds, the second fastest goal in La Liga this season, with a clinical finish from a ball over the top of the defence by Ivan Rakitic. The signs were ominous for Cordoba as they found themselves encamped in their own half, although Barca did no