The Great Weekend Predictions - Round 7

Saturday

Atlético (7th) vs Real Madrid (5th)

Whilst a hellish hullaballoo has been hovering over Atleti’s home all week, the massive Real Madrid media machine has been humming away, continuing its campaign to make sure it’s Iker Casillas’ claws that clutch the Ballon d’Or and not the Portuguese poser from Old Trafford.

The award is to the club what shiny things are to Guti - hypnotising. For some time now, everyone at Real from the kitman to the canteen cronies have been wheeled out to sing the justified praises of Saint Iker.

All except one McCain-esque maverick who refuses to bend or break. Or look his opponent in the eye. The real hardworking ‘Joe the Plummer’ of La Liga - big Bernd Schuster.

In an interview with Marca last weekend, the Teutonic titan of ‘taches said that his vote for player of the year would go to... Cristiano Ronaldo.

“If you take the season as a whole, you can see it’s Cristiano’s,” boomed Bernado cheerfully, as Ramón Calderón’s head exploded in the background.

LLL Prediction - Away win

Espanyol (9th) vs Villarreal (2nd)

There is a big empty space in La Liga Loca’s head. In fact, there are a lot of big empty spaces in La Liga Loca’s head. This one is marked ‘Villarreal.’ As usual, absolutely nothing has happened in the Yellow Submarine’s world to excite the blog’s limited attention.

So La Liga Loca did some work for once and went in search of dirt and tales of disaster on the club’s website. But there was to be no reward. Instead, it details the thrilling news that Guille Franco will be appearing on the Villarreal TV channel on Friday evening, and that Juan Capdevila has renewed his contract for another year.

Still, it’s a massive improvement on the summer when the big business that rocked Villarreal’s world involved car parking allocations and the naming of the local leisure centre.

LLL Prediction - Draw

Sunday

Malaga (12th) vs Getafe (8th)

If someone climbed into the back of La Liga Loca’s cab claiming to be a Malaga player and wanting to take a tour of the town, then he would be told in no uncertain terms to sling his Segunda-bound hook.

But this is the exact same ruse that has caught out a number cabbies in Malaga. A gentleman hails the taxi claiming to have just signed for the Primera new boys. After professing to be a good friend of mad Sammy Eto’o, the mysterious Malaga impostor takes a bit of a tour before legging it without paying.

“He puts on a good performance,” admits Juan, one of the victims who says that the runner disarmed him by being friendly. A handy hint for all cash-strapped cab fans in Spain.

LLL Prediction - Draw

Betis (20th) vs Mallorca (11th)

If you were a top international striker and contemplating a move abroad, there are a number of marvellous methods of assessing the pros and cons of a particular transfer. And this is not in the pros and cons found at a gathering of Primera presidents sense.

Speaking to someone who had a similar experience or travelling to the desired destination to have a poke around are two possible paths to follow.

Or you could do what Dani Güiza and his agent, and life partner, Nuria Bermúdez did - use the medium of television.

After being roundly ignored by Primera clubs, the former Mallorca man opted for a move to Fenebahce after seeing Istanbul on a TV show on Telemadrid about Madrileños living abroad - about the only programme on the channel that does not involve the local council leader Esperanza Aguirre in some shape or form.

But poor old Dani is not having the best of times despite this thorough research and feels that his Turkish trial will be a short one.

“After the first few days, I wanted to go back,” complained Güiza on his move. And he also had some special words for his busty business partner. “She’s a disaster, she doesn’t help me earn much money, at all.”

LLL Prediction - Draw

Sporting (19th) vs Osasuna (16th)

With all the excitement over Atlético, La Liga Loca wasn’t able to cover the real shock news of the week - the sacking of Ziganda at Osasuna, a club that hasn’t booted out a boss for 11 years.

After a year of boring the balls off of all and sundry and a failure to score more than two goals this season, Osasuna president Patxi Izco took drastic action by kicking out Cuco.

“I was a little bit surprised,” said Ziganda, one of the blog’s favourite bosses. “I knew things were bad and that managers are on a tightrope. But coaches want time and the club wants results,” shrugged Cuco.

The new pope of Pamplona is José Antonio Camacho - a member of the red-faced, old school group of La Liga managers. However he is still stuck with a forward line that possesses all the striking threat of Fernando Gago.

LLL Prediction - Home win

Racing (14th) vs Deportivo (10th)

One of Camacho’s new comrades is Deportivo manager, Miguel Angel Lotina. And this week, the Lord of Doom was keen to dump the blame of Cuco’s calamitous week into the hands of hacks.

“The blame is almost always with you,” fumed Lotina, “every day there’s more rush, more critics and every day it’s harder to be a coach.”

When finished with his rant on the perils of working in La Primera, the Deportivo depressive expanded on his theories.

“Society is on the wrong path and football is its clearest mirror.”

LLL Prediction - Home win

Valladolid (13th) vs Recreativo (18th)

This week’s News from Sweden, courtesy of thelocal.se, describes how our Scandinavian friends are being plagued by a rampaging mob of killer slugs. Run for your heavy tax-burdened lives!

“Local newspaper Västerbottens-Kuriren reported on Friday that one of the infamous 'killer' slugs, so named for the destruction that they wreak on town and country gardens alike, had been spotted in the open in Umeå.

"A very interesting find. I am 90 percent certain that it is a 'killer' slug," said Ted von Proschwitz at the Natural History Museum in Gothenburg.”

LLL Prediction - Home win

Valencia (1st) vs Numancia (17th)

After a week of a squeezing stress balls and dethrobbing his veins, Valencia president Vicente Soriano has finally reacted to Bernd Schuster’s jibes from last weekend that Cazorla and Villa ‘lacked ambition’ when they turned down the chance to become buddies of his at the Bernabeu.

“Any player from Valencia has 10 times more ambition that any from Madrid,” said the spittle-flying Mestalla man. “And 10 times, no, 100 times more than Bernd Schuster!”

LLL Prediction - Home win

Athletic Bilbao (15th) vs Barcelona (4th)

Although the battling Basques are sitting pretty in mid-table, poor old Athletic are now facing the fearsome foursome in a run of matches that could pile more pressure on top of the club’s beleaguered president, Fernando García Macua.

Last week the big cheese of Bilbao lost a vote from the club’s members to tinker with the statutes - a sign of rum rumblings from the side’s seething ‘socios.’

“There’s no faith in the team, the coach or the board,” sniffed representative, Nika Cuenca.

LLL Prediction - Away win

Almería (6th) vs Sevilla (3rd)

Every time an international round of matches is completed, stories of the ‘Fifa Virus’ pop up in the press. This particular pest is responsible for injuries to most of the Primera’s players, leading to all manner of rants and rages from managers.

The club most hit by this particular plight this time round is Sevilla, whose coach must wish that his players would follow Jesus Navas’ example and only leave the house to stock up on ham.

The Andalusian club’s scintillating start to the season has now been hampered by injuries to Kanouté, Capel, Adriano, Fabiano, Chevanton and Drago leaving them with a squad as threadbare as Maniche’s salad box.

LLL Prediction - Draw

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