In three of Europe’s top five leagues the leading goal scorer plays for the team that is also leading the table. This weekend’s schedule features three games in which a league’s top two scorers will face off — and not surprisingly, each will impact positions near the top of the standings as well.
EPL: Less than a third of the way into the season, defending champion Chelsea is already nine points shy of league-leading Manchester City. But the third-place Blues take a four-game winning streak — and a 270-minute scoreless streak — on the road Saturday against fifth-place Liverpool, winner of three straight (NBC, 9:30 a.m. PT). The game also will match the league’s leading goal scorers in Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah, who has scored nine times, and Chelsea’s Alvaro Morata, whose eight goals is tied for second.
Bundesliga: A month ago, Borussia Dortmund sat atop the league. But four losses during a five-game winless slide has sent the team tumbling four spots. But if it can arrest that fall against red-hot Schalke on Saturday (FS1, Univision Deportes, 6:30 a.m. PT), the team could jump as high as second.
Ligue 1: Very little has gone wrong this season for unbeaten Paris Saint-Germain, which leads Europe’s major club teams in goals (43) and goal-differential (+34). PSG hasn’t really been tested, though, since just two of first their 13 games have some against teams currently in the league’s top four. That changes Sunday when PSG goes to Monaco to face the only team within eight points of the leaders (BeIN Sports, 11:55 a.m. PT). The game also will showcase the league’s top scorers in PGS’s Edinson Cavani (15 goals) and Monaco’s Radamel Falcao (13).
La Liga: Another Sunday matchup of scoring leaders sends Barcelona and Lionel Messi, who tops La Liga with 12 goals, to Valencia to meet Simone Zaza, who enters the weekend second in the league with nine tallies (BeIN Sports en Espanol, 11:35 PT). A loss by either side would tarnish unbeaten records 12 games into the schedule.