The Elk-Dodging Weekend Predictions - Round 10

Featuring Paris Hilton, Big Brother, Barcelona's dodgy engine, Atletico's plans to beat Real Madrid, Guti's venture into sonic terrorism and the long-awaited return of The News From Sweden... 


Tenerife (16th) vs Málaga (20th)

“Drat and double drat,” spat the shiny-suited simpletons running the game in Spain.

“The new TV deal appears to be working, the title race could be good this year, and Atlético are rubbish again. This is all going far too well. And that simply won’t do.”

And that’s why the Spanish league (LFP) have decided to balls thing up royally, in a bold but admirably imaginative manner, by threatening to have a ‘break’ during the next round of matches scheduled after the international break on the weekend of the 22 November. 

In a topic that will be covered by La Liga Loca in more detail in the days to come, the LFP are holding a meeting on Friday to discuss the Spanish government’s proposal to scrap what is known as ‘the Beckham law’ - the ruling that allows billionaire foreign-types (mainly footballers) to pay just 24 percent income tax as opposed to the 43 percent the loaded locals have to fork out to His Majesty.

The LFP (or some clubs belonging to it – well, Barcelona and Real Madrid, anyway) feel that this change will prevent future Ronaldos coming to la Liga.

But in an intriguing twist, the union representing la Liga’s players is all in favour of the proposed changes that should see financial equality restored (only on newly-contracted players) from January 1.

However, La Liga Loca feels sure that this particular issue is unlikely to make the slightest difference to either Tenerife or Málaga in the near future.

LLL prediction - Home win

Getafe (11th) vs Deportivo (6th)

Saturday sees Getafe celebrating 200 games in the Spanish top flight as well as 100 matches in the Coliseum.

And Michel’s men are putting on a big old party by hosting Depor – which is a little like opening an extension to the British Museum and getting Bubble from Big Brother to cut the tape.

Getafe’s first match in their municipal home was against Mallorca on 12 September, 2004. Unfortunately, the side lead by Quique Sánchez Flores crashed to a 2-1 defeat.

But since then, the Coliseum club have gone on to win 45, draw 29 and lose 25.

And that has inspired La Liga Loca to ask you, Dear Reader, to name the only side to have played at Getafe’s home in la Liga but never lost.

(NB This ‘fact’ comes from Marca, so the blog takes no responsibility if it turns out to be complete nonsense).

LLL Prediction - Home win

Barcelona (1st) vs Mallorca (5th)

If there’s one thing that the Spanish sports journalists really really like to go nuts about, it’s printing astonishingly detailed descriptions of footballers' injuries as if they were writing for a medical journal.

And this is why readers of Friday’s papers have learned that Cristiano Ronaldo is officially suffering from a “grado I-II strain in the internal lateral ligament and has a bone edema in his supernumario thingy on his whatsit on his right ankle.”

Let’s just say that the last time the Real Madrid man had this much difficulty walking normally was when he discovered Paris Hilton had gone commando in their night-club fumble.

Encouraged by this medical madness, Marca has gone for broke with a detailed aeronautical description of why there was a problem with Barça’s plane on the side’s midweek return from Ruskieland that caused a two-hour delay.

Whilst most sane papers would have reported engine trouble, Friday’s Marca goes into intense detail - including graphics - as it describes an issue with the ‘talvas’ on an engine’s ‘laterales’.

La Liga Loca can assure you that the fine people at FourFourTwo aren’t paying the blog nearly enough to dig further into this particular plane-related problem.

LLL Prediction - Home win

Atlético (18th) vs Real Madrid (2nd)

Like Maniche sitting on a snack, Marca are on a heck of a roll and have detailed Manuel Pellegrini’s secret plans to beat Atlético Madrid on Saturday night.

In their ‘Confidential’ column, the paper reports that the Third-Choice Chilean has told his squad that they need to play like they did in the first half against Milan if they are to inflict yet more misery on the Calderón club.

The latest Guti news is that the midfielder is set to return from his two-match exile - sorry, period of rest due to injury.

Sport also note that he will also be making an appearance in the musical world, having contributed his unique vocal talents to the new CD of tedious gravel-voiced crooner Joaquín Sabina.

LLL Prediction - Away win

*Remember that you can follow all the action from the Madrid derby on TV. But if you want to know how rubbish Sergio Ramos is or get the latest on Iker Casillas' transformation into a 300-style Spartan, then follow the blog's live Twitter feed from the Vicente Calderón from 21.45 CET.


Valladolid (14th) vs Xerez (19th)

News from Sweden. Aside from the sudden realisation that they can no longer play football, the country has been rocked by recent reports of the increasingly hostile behaviour of their elk population.

That’s what is reporting this week anyway, in a ‘moosed’ alarming article.“The elk population in the county of Halland, western Sweden, took somewhat of a blow on Friday evening as six animals died in the space of an hour, after colliding with traffic in separate incidents."Must get to the shops before they shut"

”'You often hear that elks tend to move about more at dusk or dawn,' Dan Lewstam from Halland police said.

”'But this was after five o'clock in the evening when it was already dark outside."”

LLL Prediction - Home win

Sporting (7th) vs Espanyol (8th)

Now that the blog comes to think of it, three weeks without la Liga may not necessarily be a bad thing.

LLL Prediction - Draw

Racing (17th) vs Athletic (9th)

This week, Racing Santander fans learned who wears the trousers at their club.

And it certainly isn’t manager Juan Carlos Mandía, who will be on the Santander sidelines against Athletic wearing a big daisy-patterned blouse after the club president told him what formation to play in Sunday’s encounter.

With just one league win all season, Racing’s big boss Francisco Pernía met with his minion on Wednesday and told the local press that “there’s got to be a change and I want to see it against Athletic.”

That change may involve playing former Liverpool midfielder and complete drip Luis García from the start. Oh dear.

LLL Prediction - Draw

Almería (15th) vs Osasuna (10th)

This week, current Osasuna manager and former Madrid coach José Antonio Camacho let the world know that he was not available should his old side require his particular expertise in the ever so unlikely event of Manuel Pellegrini being pushed out.

“I will never go back there as manager,” declared Camacho in the boldest of terms.

This was then followed by a slightly backtracking, “but if they need me for something else, then...”

LLL Prediction - Draw

Valencia (4th) vs Zaragoza (12th)

The very strong possibility that the knockout stages of this season’s Europa League will feature the likes of Liverpool, Barça and Bayern still isn’t enough to prevent the Valencia players making an nun’s wimple of their group in the current competition.

Another lead was thrown away on Thursday night - this time against Slavia Prague - leaving the men from Mestalla second with one victory and three draws.

So, it’s unlikely that this season’s European efforts will make it into the syllabus of a course that’s been launched at the city’s university - a course on the history of Valencia that has 222 students enrolled.

El País spoke to a number of those taking the subject and La Liga Loca suspects that the one who was majoring in criminology will probably be top of the class come end of term time.

LLL Prediction - Home win

Sevilla (3rd) vs Villarreal (13th)

Now that the street that Jesus Navas lives on has been taken apart and rebuilt brick by brick, at the national side’s training complex in the outskirts of Madrid, the midfielder says that he feels ready to take his place on the squad to face both Argentina in Atleti's home and Austria in Vienna.

“I think I’m perfectly able to move up to the national side now,” claimed Navas, who is still under the impression that the Austrian capital lies somewhere on the outskirts of Almería.

LLL Prediction - Home win

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