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Power Ranking the Top 20 European Clubs: Juventus Fall, Real Madrid Rise

Sam TigheWorld Football Tactics Lead WriterOctober 22, 2013

Power Ranking the Top 20 European Clubs: Juventus Fall, Real Madrid Rise

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    Paolo Bruno/Getty Images

    Welcome to the latest edition of our European club power rankings.

    Before you sink your teeth into UEFA Champions League action for the week, check in on where your favourite club ranks among the best of the best right now.

    We've got a new No. 1 after Atletico Madrid fell to their first loss of the season, while Juventus and Real Madrid are big movers. Don't agree with our standings? Add yours in the comments below!

Honourable Mentions

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    Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

    Manchester United

    David Moyes' men have slipped out of our top 20 rankings for the first time. It's not just the poor results, but the "beatable" aura they currently hold.

     

    Lille

    Saturday's 1-0 win at Montpellier was Les Dogues' fourth victory in five matches. In those five games, Rene Girard's side have not conceded a single goal. In fact, the last time Vincent Enyeama and his defence shipped a goal was in early September in a 2-0 home defeat to Nice.

    Shakhtar Donetsk

    Another victory, this time over Ilyichivets Mariupol, has allowed Mircea Lucescu to continue the Waxtap's mini-resurgence. Good form in the UEFA Champions League could see them re-enter the rankings.

     

20. Sporting

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    Montero for parent club Seattle Sounders
    Montero for parent club Seattle SoundersOtto Greule Jr/Getty Images

    Last Week: N/R

    Movement: New Entry!

    Sporting have been playing superbly for a number of weeks, and with Manchester United dropping out of the rankings, the Leoes can come in.

    Fredy Montero has been destroying defences week in, week out and scored a hat-trick against Alba this weekend in the Portuguese Cup.

    In the league he's managed nine goals from seven games, bettering Jackson Martinez's record and allowing Sportinguistas to forget all about the club's off-pitch turmoil.

19. Porto

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    EuroFootball/Getty Images

    Last Week: 18

    Movement: -1

    With no Liga Sagres action this weekend Porto turned their attention to the Portuguese Cup.

    The slid past Trofense at home with a 1-0 victory, and as long as the Dragoes keep winning they'll find a place in our top 20 rankings assured.

    To start climbing the ladder and surpassing teams above, Paulo Fonseca's side needs to catch fire in the UEFA Champions League.

18. Internazionale

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    Valerio Pennicino/Getty Images

    Last Week: 15

    Movement: -3

    In one of the most entertaining games of the weekend, Internazionale closed out a miraculous 3-3 draw away to Torino.

    It'd be considered a bad result in usual circumstances, but after having Samir Handanovic sent off after just five minutes and conceding from a resulting penalty, Walter Mazzarri will be delighted to take a point.

    The Nerazzurri were even ahead at one stage thanks to a Rodrigo Palacio double and the brilliance of Ishak Belfodil, but il Toro stole a late third to force a share of points.

17. Fiorentina

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    Gabriele Maltinti/Getty Images

    Last Week: 20

    Movement: +3

    Antonio Conte's Juventus threw away a 2-0 lead at the Artemio Franchi this weekend, allowing Fiorentina to haul themselves back into the contest and finish up 4-2 winners.

    The game was marred by a dubious refereeing display, but it was impossible not to notice the brilliance of Giuseppe Rossi in scoring a match-winning hat-trick.

    It was a well deserved victory for the Viola, and Vincenzo Montella's program looks alive and well.

16. Chelsea

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    Charlie Crowhurst/Getty Images

    Last Week: 17

    Movement: +1

    Chelsea secured a routine 4-1 win over Norwich City at Stamford Bridge this weekend, but the game was not without its talking points.

    Questions swirl around whether Eden Hazard's first goal should stand, and David Luiz committed a comical error to gift Jordon Mutch the first goal, but overall the Blues were the better side by far.

    This team is starting to find its Jose Mourinho groove—stubborn, tough to beat yet full of goals.

15. Tottenham Hotspur

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    Michael Regan/Getty Images

    Last Week: 14

    Movement: -1

    A routine 2-0 victory at Villa Park cured Tottenham Hotspur after the previous matchday's horrendous home loss to West Ham United.

    Birmingham represents a happy hunting ground for Andre Villas-Boas' side and not since 2008 have Aston Villa beaten his troops, so landing this fixture as a "wake-up call" was nothing short of ideal.

    Erik Lamela still hasn't found a path into the first team yet, but with Gylfi Sigurdsson's form wobbling, expect to see him very soon.

14. Liverpool

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    Julian Finney/Getty Images

    Last Week: 12

    Movement: -2

    Liverpool didn't play well at the weekend, not to their usual standards, and could only scrape a draw against 10-man Newcastle at St. James' Park.

    The team have come to rely Daniel Sturridge, and this game showed his inexperience, the striker failing to settle in and control proceedings despite grabbing a neat goal from a Luis Suarez cross.

    The expectations of the Reds have changed; Dropping points at Newcastle is now a bitter blow.

13. Manchester City

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    Jan Kruger/Getty Images

    Last Week: 16

    Movement: +3

    Manchester City picked up their first away win of the season in style, beating West Ham United with ease at the Boleyn Ground.

    It was a much-needed victory, as the Citizens had only picked up one point from a possible nine on the road thus far, and ironically West Ham is by far the toughest place they've visited.

    Sergio Aguero stepped into the limelight with two goals and an assist.

12. Bayer Leverkusen

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    Michael Regan/Getty Images

    Last Week: 13

    Movement: +1

    There are few teams in Europe right now that remain as consistent and reliable as Bayer Leverkusen.

    Granted, their opener on Friday via Stefan Kiessling wasn't actually a goal (it went in through the side netting), but they find ways to win and hold on for three-point hauls with regularity.

    They're the third-best team in Germany, no question, but they're putting up a valiant fight in the Bundesliga title race.

11. Monaco

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    Michael Regan/Getty Images

    Last Week: 8

    Movement: -3

    We asked B/R's Jonathan Johnson for a Monaco update privately:

    Monaco's 2-2 draw at Sochaux was not a massive surprise, it was a result that had been coming. Radamel Falcao has been struggling for form of late and has now gone three league games without a goal.

    When the Colombian does not score, the team tend to fail to kill their opponents off. Yannick Ferreira Carrasco netted a quick-fire double over the weekend, but it was not enough and Sochaux fought back from two goals down.

    The result should serve as a wake-up call for Claudio Ranieri's side who showed too much defensive naivety in the absence of captain Eric Abidal.

10. Napoli

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    Paolo Bruno/Getty Images

    Last Week: 10

    Movement: None

    Rafa Benitez will feel hard done by, as for long stretches his side dominated proceedings at the Olimpico on Friday night.

    But the only statistic that matters is the scoreline, and after coming away with a 2-0 loss to Roma, the Spaniard will look longingly at his questionable defensive corps.

    Paolo Cannavaro and Miguel Britos are not the standard of title-winning centre-backs, and the loss of Hugo Campagnaro is looking rather significant at this stage.

9. Real Madrid

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    Denis Doyle/Getty Images

    Last Week: 11

    Movement: +2

    For the first time in a number of weeks, Real Madrid won a match convincingly.

    Grinding out results is a fine trait, but the Bernabeu crowd demand dominance, control and flair. It's fair to say they received that in their side's 2-0 win over Malaga this weekend, as opposing 'keeper Willy Caballero made an astonishing 13 saves on the day.

    Los Merengues face the champions Barcelona next.

8. Juventus

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    Gabriele Maltinti/Getty Images

    Last Week: 6

    Movement: -2

    Juventus fell to Fiorentina at the Artemio Franchi this weekend and, in turn, allowed Roma to open up a five-point gap at the top of the Serie A table.

    The Scudetto, thought of as a given in preseason given Napoli's Edinson Cavani sale, is now looking harder than ever to acquire, and Antonio Conte has some tweaks to make.

    Left-wing-back remains an issue for consistency, and, for some reason, since Paul Pogba has become a starting player performance levels have dropped. Adjustment period?

7. Paris Saint-Germain

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    EuroFootball/Getty Images

    Last Week: 9

    Movement: +1

    We asked B/R's Jonathan Johnson for a Paris Saint-Germain update privately:

    PSG pulled clear at the top of Ligue 1 for the first time this season thanks to an emphatic 4-0 win over Bastia. The defending champions move two points clear of Monaco following Les Monegasques' 2-2 draw at Sochaux.

    It is difficult to see anybody catching Laurent Blanc's side if they maintain their current form, having won seven of their last eight league games. Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Edinson Cavani netted brilliant doubles over the weekend but did so in separate halves.

    The two are yet to feature on the same scoresheet when playing together, and that is what Blanc will now be focusing on moving forward

     

6. Roma

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    Paolo Bruno/Getty Images

    Last Week: 7

    Movement: +1

    Played eight, won eight, scored 22, conceded one.

    Roma fans can scarcely believe what they're seeing, but they're enjoying every single moment as their beloved club sit top of Serie A in incredible form.

    Napoli was their big test, their second in quick succession after toppling Internazionale in Milan, and although Gonzalo Higuain wasn't fit, the Giallorossi played well and deserved to claim a 2-0 win.

    The form team in Italy right now, without question. 

5. Borussia Dortmund

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    Mike Hewitt/Getty Images

    Last Week: 4

    Movement: -1

    For Borussia Dortmund to be mixing it with the elite teams and keeping pace with Bayern Munich in the Bundesliga is remarkable considering the injury list they've accrued.

    Ilkay Gundogan and Lukasz Piszczek, two influential key performers, have been ruled out for several more months, yet Juergen Klopp is finding answers in his thin, stretched squad.

    Their 1-0 victory over Hannover at the weekend was the epitome of "job done."

4. Arsenal

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    Mike Hewitt/Getty Images

    Last Week: 5

    Movement: +1

    Norwich ran into a train on Saturday, leaving the Emirates in tatters having been destroyed 4-1 by Arsenal.

    Arsene Wenger's men have hit a rich vein of form and look almost impossible to beat at home, with Aaron Ramsey, Mesut Ozil, Jack Wilshere and Olivier Giroud all combining to wonderful effect.

    Arsenal sit top of the Premier League table right now and look, by some distance, the best team in England.

3. Barcelona

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    Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images

    Last Week: 3

    Movement: None

    Barcelona can count their blessings after dropping two points away at Osasuna, as Atletico Madrid went one further and lost to Espanyol.

    It creates a one-point gap at the top of La Liga but it's nothing substantial, and Gerardo Martino will demand a better, more clinical performance against Real Madrid in the Clasico next weekend.

    Despite Cesc Fabregas' great form as a central midfielder, he simply cannot wrap his head around the false-nine role.

2. Atletico Madrid

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    David Ramos/Getty Images

    Last Week: 1

    Movement: -1

    Atletico Madrid fans can't quite believe it: On the first weekend this season that Barcelona drop points in a 0-0 draw, their team failed to capitalise.

    Cules will have been cheering on rivals Espanyol for once, and a Thibaut Courtois own goal was enough to see them claim an impressive victory over the Colcherones.

    A certain team in Europe has been biting at Atleti's heels all season, and with a loss Diego Simeone's side drop one spot in our rankings.

1. Bayern Munich

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    Julian Finney/Getty Images

    Last Week: 2

    Movement: +1

    Bayern Munich's impressive form and performances over the past few weeks has seen then claim top spot in our rankings at the expense of Atletico Madrid.

    Pep Guardiola's men completed a come-from-behind victory against Mainz at the weekend to reaffirm their strength and dominance in the Bundesliga, but they haven't been able to shake the chase of Borussia Dortmund and Bayer Leverkusen so far.

    Mario Goetze stepped off the bench to claim two assists at the weekend, so perhaps his role in the side will start to expand in the weeks to come.

     

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