Lionel Messi scores 51st goal

Updated: March 19, 2012, 9:45 AM ET
Associated Press

MADRID -- Lionel Messi scored in his sixth straight game, raising his season total to 51 goals as Barcelona won 2-0 at Sevilla on Saturday night.

Xavi Hernandez curled home a free kick in the 18th minute and Messi took a pass from Andres Iniesta eight minutes later, slipped the ball through Emir Spahic's legs and chipping over goalkeeper Andres Palop.

Messi scored his 31st league goal this season, one behind Cristiano Ronaldo's league-leading total, and the 150th league goal of his career. With 14 goals in his past six games, Messi needs four to tie Cesar Rodriguez's Barcelona career record of 235.

Barcelona (19-2-6) closed with seven points of Real Madrid (23-2-1), which hosts fourth-place Malaga on Sunday.

Last-place Zaragoza's dim chances of remaining in the first division were handed another setback with a 1-1 tie against Osasuna. Helder Postiga scored for Zaragoza (4-16-7) in the 86th minute, but Roversio Rodrigues tied the score two minutes later with a header off a corner kick.

England

LONDON -- Tim Cahill secured an FA Cup quarterfinal replay for Everton against Sunderland, giving the hosts a 1-1 draw.

Phil Bardsley scored in the 12th minute for Sunderland, and Cahill tied it 11 minutes later.

Tottenham's match against Bolton was abandoned with the score 1-1 after Bolton midfielder Fabrice Muamba collapsed in the 41st minute and was rushed to a hospital's heart attack unit critically ill. On Sunday, Chelsea faces Leicester and Liverpool plays Stoke.

In the Premier League, eighth-place Swansea (10-10-9) won 3-0 at 11th-place Fulham (9-11-9) as Gylfi Sigurdsson scored in the 36th and 66th minutes, and Joe Allen added a goal in the 77th.

West Bromwich Albion (10-13-6) was held to a 1-1 draw by last-place Wigan (4-15-10). James McArthur put Wigan ahead in the 54th, but Paul Scharner tied it in the 65th.

Italy

ROME -- Zlatan Ibrahimovic converted a penalty kick in the 17th minute for his fifth goal in three matches, and first-place AC Milan won 2-0 at Parma to remain four points ahead of second-place Juventus, which won 5-0 at Fiorentina.

With team president and former Italian Premier Silvio Berlusconi making a rare trip for a road game, Ibrahimovic scored his league-leading 20th goal after Cristian Zaccardo was given a yellow card for a hand ball on a shot from Urby Emanuelson.

Emanuelson doubled the lead in the 55th for Milan (18-4-6).

Juventus (14-0-14) kept pace with goals by Mirko Vucinic, Arturo Vidal, Claudio Marchisio, Andrea Pirlo and Simone Padoin. Milan plays at Juventus on Tuesday in the second leg of the Italian Cup semifinals following a 2-1 Juventus win in the first leg last month.

Germany

FRANKFURT -- Bayern Munich fell just short of scoring seven goals in a third consecutive match, winning 6-0 at Hertha Berlin in the Bundesliga.

Arjen Robben scored in the 12th minute, then converted penalty kicks in the 19th and 67th. Mario Gomez made a penalty kick in the 50th, and visiting Bayern also got goals from Thomas Mueller in the ninth minute and Toni Kroos in the 51st.

Borussia Dortmund (18-3-5) won 1-0 at home against Werder Bremen as Shinji Kagawa celebrated his 23rd birthday by scoring in the eighth minute. Dortmund maintained a five-point lead over second-place Bayern (17-6-3) and extended its league unbeaten streak to a club-record 20 matches.

Borussia Moenchengladbach won 2-1 at Bayer Leverkusen to reaffirm its claim for a place in the Champions League next season and Hamburg fell to its third consecutive defeat, 3-1 at home to Freiburg.

Patrick Helmes scored twice to help Wolfsburg rally past Nuremberg 3-1 and Augsburg edged Mainz 2-1.

France

PARIS -- Defender Christophe Jallet chested down Jeremy Menez's cross and volleyed to score in the first minute of stoppage time, giving first-place Paris Saint-Germain a 2-2 tie at Caen that extended its French league lead to two points. Second-place Montpellier lost 1-0 at Nancy.

Pierre-Alain Frau put Caen in front against his former team in the 54th minute, but Javier Pastore tied it two minutes later with his ninth league goal this season. Thomas Heurtaux put Caen back ahead in the 70th when he headed home Frederic Bulot's corner kick as Alex failed to pick up his run.

PSG is 5-0-4 in the league since Carlo Ancelotti replaced Antoine Kombouare as coach.

Montepellier lost and finished two men short as Andre Luiz converted a penalty kick in the 63rd following a foul by Benjamin Stambouli, who was ejected. Vitorino Hilton had been sent off in the 43rd.

Scotland

GLASGOW -- Defending champion Rangers lost for the third time in four games since entering bankruptcy protection, 2-1 at Dundee United.

Keith Watson put the hosts ahead in the 37th minute strike and Jon Daly made it 2-0 in the 47th. Sone Aluko scored in the 60th for Rangers, which started Americans Maurice Edu and Alejandro Bedoya.

Ranters (20-6-4) have 54 points -- after a 10-point deduction for entering administration -- 21 points behind first-place Celtic.


Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press