LONDON (AP) ― A superb free kick from Oscar gave Chelsea a 1-0 win over Stoke in the fourth round of the FA Cup on Sunday while Fulham needed an equalizer 15 minutes from time to draw 1-1 with third-tier strugglers Sheffield United, who were down to 10 men.
The Brazil midfielder scored in the 27th minute at Stamford Bridge with a curling 20-meter shot that ended in the top corner as Stoke goalkeeper Asmir Begovic dived in vain.
Dangerous on the break and dominant in midfield, Chelsea almost doubled its lead soon after when Oscar hit the post. Andre Schurrle also hit the woodwork after the interval with a shot from a tight angle as Chelsea kept creating the better chances.
Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho, whose team will face Premier League title rival Manchester City in the next round, was happy to avoid a replay ― although he said his players could have won by a bigger margin on his 51st birthday.
Barcelona was unfazed by the recent departure of its club president amid a lawsuit as it eased to a 3-0 win over Malaga on Sunday to reclaim its share of the Spanish league lead. Lionel Messi didn’t score but he played a part in two goals, setting up Pedro Rodriguez to make it 2-0 in the 55th after Gerard Pique had opened the scoring five minutes before halftime. Pedro then took Messi’s pass and crossed for Alexis Sanchez to tap in the host’s third in the 61st.
Atletico Madrid stayed level with Barcelona at the top of the standings by romping to a 4-2 win at Rayo Vallecano as Diego Costa scored his 20th league goal of the season.