Eurozone: Milan happy with team spirit as Italian leaders crush Bologna

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Lionel Messi scored twice as Barcelona beat Real Sociedad 5-0 at the Nou Camp last night to maintain their two-point lead over Real Madrid at the top of La Liga.

David Villa and Andres Iniesta put Barça 2-0 ahead at half-time, Messi struck just after the break and late goals from the Argentine and Bojan Krkic mean Pep Guardiola's side have now scored 21 times in their last four La Liga games.

Earlier, Cristiano Ronaldo scored a trademark flashing free-kick as Real eased to a 3-1 win at bottom club Real Zaragoza.

Mesut Ozil opened the scoring in the 15th minute at Zaragoza's Romareda stadium, Ronaldo added the second just before half-time, his 17th of the season, and Angel Di Maria made it three two minutes after the break. Gabi Fernandez pulled a goal back for the home side from the penalty spot in the 54th after Ricardo Carvalho's clumsy foul on Nico Bertolo.

In Italy, Milan coach Massimiliano Allegri praised his side's character after the Serie A leaders won 3-0 at Bologna yesterday after losing 2-0 to Ajax in the Champions League in the week. "The defeat against Ajax has done us some good," Allegri said. "The team reacted immediately and it was a very important result." Kevin-Prince Boateng, Robinho and Zlatan Ibrahimovic all scored for the second league game in a row for the Rossoneri.

Milan now lead Serie A by six points after Lazio, who were in second, lost 2-1 at Juventus, the Turin side moving above them in the table.

In Germany, Borussia Dortmund, chasing their first Bundesliga triumph since 2002, continued their blistering campaign, defeating Werder Bremen 2-0 at the Westfalenstadion to make it nine league wins in a row. The free-scoring league leaders have also now scored at least two goals in 14 of their 16 league fixtures this season and hold an 11-point lead over second-placed Bayer Leverkusen, who won 4-2 at Hamburg at the weekend.

Sixth-placed Bayern Munich celebrated a 3-0 win over St Pauli, buoyed by the news Bastian Schweinsteiger has signed a new contract until 2016, which was announced before the game on Saturday. The 26-year-old German midfielder had reportedly been a target for Real Madrid and Internazionale.