Despite Unai Emery having a bit of moan about Sporting being allowed back into the game at times, on Saturday, the Asturian side were knocked senseless within nine minutes after goals from Mehmut Topal and Roberto Soldado and never looked like threatening the visitors from Mestalla after that.Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨
Comfortable away wins, a happy-clappy team, and a coach secure in his job - three things that have not been happening at Valencia for some time now. Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨
Pellegrini may well be currently sat back on a sun lounger somewhere in Chile, but he is still no doubt laughing his knackers off at what is happening at Real Madrid. Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨
The Real team led by the coach disgracefully attacked by the Mourinho-mad Marca at every opportunity had five wins from five, 16 goals scored and just two conceded at this stage last season. Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨
The Special One has produced 11 points from a possible 15, six goals scored and two goalless draws against the less than tricky tests of Levante and Mallorca.Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨
Had Mourinho opted to stay in Milan and Pellegrini remained for a second season under Florentino PÃÂ©rez, Marca would surely have been calling for his head, especially after SaturdayÃ¢ÂÂs lamentable showing against Levante. Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨
Instead, Fernando AlonsoÃ¢ÂÂs F1 win means that the paper can ignore the whole unfortunate affair and pray for a big win over Auxerre on Tuesday night. Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨
La Liga Loca expected a home win for Athletic. It also predicted a 5-0 victory for Real Madrid, something it regretted within micro-seconds of the game kicking off.
Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨But whilst Ã¢ÂÂThe Mou TeamÃ¢ÂÂ peed about for 90 minutes like headless chickens that were never that bright in the first place, Barcelona managed to rack up more chances in a ten minute first-half spell than their rivals did in the whole of the encounter against Levante. Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨
The cold-hearted, downright-unpleasant-during-its-monthly-Ã¢ÂÂtimeÃ¢ÂÂ, but consistent LLL prides itself on wishing ill-will to every club in la Primera, every day of every season.
However, that isnÃ¢ÂÂt always enough to stop the Ã¢ÂÂclearly pro-Madrid, anti-Madrid, pro-BarÃÂ§a, anti-BarÃÂ§aÃ¢ÂÂ nonsense that comes with the Primera-pundit territory.
Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨But at the moment, the blog must admit to crossing its fingers for especially bad things to happen to Deportivo and AlmerÃÂa, two teams that came face-to-face on Saturday. In the former sideÃ¢ÂÂs case it is because this most tedious of teams make the blog want to hurl itself off its balcony, having first undergone decapitation to ensure a swift end to it all. Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨
This vitriol is less understandable in AlmerÃÂaÃ¢ÂÂs case, a modest club from the south of Spain. Or is it? AlmerÃÂa have been adopted once again by one of the most objectionable characters in Spain - former Ã¢ÂÂX-FactorÃ¢ÂÂ runner-up, and the man in possession of worse hair than Carles Puyol, David Bisbal. Therefore, the club deserves nothing but pain whilst their collaboration continues. And for those who think that no singer can be worth that much scorn, try 40 seconds of this. Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨
It was AlmerÃÂa and their under-fire boss, Juanma Lillo, who came away with a win on Sunday, a victory that saved his job according to the press but that did nothing of the sort according to Lillo himself. Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨
Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨Still misses chances that look considerably easier than the ones he scores, but the Frenchman already appears to be the 15 goal man to keep HÃÂ©rcules up this season, with three in bag already after a brace againt Sevilla. Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨
Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨LLL has a confession to make. It watched league football last Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and three games again on Saturday. It watched another on Sunday. But it simply couldnÃ¢ÂÂt handle one more. It really couldnÃ¢ÂÂt. Sorry.Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨So it didnÃ¢ÂÂt catch AtlÃÂ©ticoÃ¢ÂÂs 1-0 win over Zaragoza, but heard that Felipe Luis was dead good on his debut. Any one who did see the game should feel free to add a little bit more. Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨
Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨Completely wrong to moan about Fernando AmorebietaÃ¢ÂÂs sending off but looked extremely cool indeed larking about in San MamÃÂ©s in the rain like a mad man in jeans and Matrix-style, strap-laden jacket. Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨
Predictably unpredictable by following a 2-0 home defeat to MÃÂ¡laga with a 1-0 win away at Racing. Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨
A sixth-placed perch for the Pericos after a 1-0 win over Osasuna sees Paul from Barcelona in a strangely chirpy mood today...
Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂMuch has been made of the poor standard (being generous) of refereeing this week and today was no exception. Yes, the ref was poor but he got the big decision right. Lolo of Osasuna deserved his red for hauling down star man Alvaro. 19-years-old, this boy is good. Looked sharp against Madrid and more of the same today.
Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨His clever play committed Lolo into hauling him down and he took his goal extremely well. No doubt Osasuna fans will blame the ref but if you constantly commit fouls then you have to expect the worst. Espanyol did well not to be bullied by the Gripper Stebson-esque (one for the teenagers) Osasuna. Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨
A few nervy moments but Espanyol deserved the win because they played the better football and if Osvaldo hadn't - I believe the technical term is "******** about", then it could have been 2-0.Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨
Espanyol 'B' / U-19s continue to march on at home showing that our youngsters can more than hold their own. Amat and Didac did well. Osasuna won't go down but purists might want to hide behind the sofa. Osasuna are normally well supported away from home but this year there were 10, yes, 10 away fans. Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨I know 10 who live in BCN. Anyone know why there were so few ?Ã¢ÂÂ
Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨Finally Sevilla president, JosÃÂ© MarÃÂa Del Nido, has made the right decision by appointing a manager of gravitas in the shape of Gregorio Manzano and left behind his recent obsession with number twos (stop giggling). Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨Antonio Alvarez lost his job to no-oneÃ¢ÂÂs surprise in Spain after SevillaÃ¢ÂÂs limp-wristed 2-0 defeat to HÃÂ©rcules to be replaced with a coach with more top flight matches under his belt that any other coach currently training in la Liga.
The whole Ã¢ÂÂnew ZidaneiÃ¢ÂÂ thing as declared by Roberto GÃÂ³mez in Marca has inevitably seen the form of the German midfielder plummet as far as his biggest fanÃ¢ÂÂs chins.Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨
A great little footballer that has barely featured under Mourinho managing just two substitute appearances in the league. A bright cameo in Levante saw both Marca and AS predicting the former Getafe man to be starting against Auxerre in Tuesday's Champions League clash. Instead, the winger has been left out of the squad, whilst Esteban Granero has been left in. Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨
A bit barking, really. Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨
Oh dear. Nearly had his ankles removed by AthleticÃ¢ÂÂs Amorebieta and had a chorus of boos in Bilbao rather than the normal cheers at opposition grounds this season when being substituted in the second half. Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨
Admittedly the San Sebastian side were all with the plucky last week against Real Madrid, but the newcomers still lost the game. But then they went and lost another on Tuesday against Osasuna and now one more with a defeat against Mallorca on Sunday afternoon to leave them just one point off the drop zone. Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨
563 minutes without a goal from open play. Just saying. Ã¢ÂÂ¨Ã¢ÂÂ¨
Ã¢ÂÂAn absence of talent,Ã¢ÂÂ in his side admits JosÃÂ© Aurelio Gay, manager of bottom-of-the-table Zaragoza. Quite correctly, as it happens.Ã¢ÂÂ¨
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