EDITOR’S NOTE: Welcome to the first installment of Men of the Match. In our new (and hopefully recurring) feature, the Men’s Fitness staff picks five of the best soccer/football performances of the weekend—whether by an individual or by a team—for special recognition. (As for terminology: We’ll say “soccer” in reference to the game stateside; everything else, it’s “football.”)
This week’s standouts:
The ascendent young star has been one of the few bright spots on an injury-depleted Manchester United side this year, and he once again proved that beauty bests age by scoring the lone goal in an otherwise dreary Manchester derby.
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) March 21, 2016
The Juventus keeper, who has the most singularly formidable glare in all of Italian football and/or most species of eagles, smashed a 22-year-old Serie A record on Sunday by completing 930 consecutive minutes in goal, and then stretching that out to 973 minutes before finally surrendering a goal to Torino’s Andrea Belotti on a penalty kick. Former AC Milan keeper Sebastiano Rossi had set the previous 229-minute mark from 1993 to 1994.
ALL-TIME RECORD! 930 minutes without conceding for Gianluigi Buffon in Serie A TIM. Legend. #G1G1
Posted by Juventus on Sunday, March 20, 2016
The Tottenham striker continues his incendiary campaign as this season’s top goal-scorer in the Premier League, notching a pair of goals against Bournemouth on Sunday within the first 16 minutes of the match. And that’s after he scored a pair of goals against Aston Villa last weekend. Kane is on fire.
The Welsh striker notched a goal in Real Madrid’s 4-0 drubbing of Sevilla on Sunday—and, in doing so, became the highest-scoring Brit in La Liga. Bale’s goal, his 43rd in 76 games for Real Madrid, bests Gary Lineker’s longstanding record of 42 goals, which he scored in 103 games for Barcelona in the late 1980s. [ESPNFC]
— LaLiga (@LaLigaEN) March 20, 2016
Lineker, who now of course commentates on all things footie, was generous in his praise. For an Englishman.
— Gary Lineker (@GaryLineker) March 20, 2016
Undefeated is always a good way to start the season, and Sporting KC fans can start the week feeling pretty good about their team’s chances this year. The men in light blue notched their third straight win of the season on Sunday behind a 70th-minute goal from Brad Davis at home against Toronto FC.