Good Day, Bad Day: GetafeÃ¢ÂÂs prophet & Atlético's magic 20 minutes
Another win over AtlÃÂ©tico Madrid was not the remarkable part of a fine Saturday night for JosÃÂ© MourinhoÃ¢ÂÂs men - although his side were given a bit of a footballing leg-up by the meanie-head referee who reduced the Rojiblancos to ten men - instead it was Barcelona losing 1-0 to Getafe, thus doubling the advantage Madrid hold over the Catalan club ahead of el ClÃÂ¡sico in a fortnightÃ¢ÂÂs time.
It is a bit of a clichÃÂ© to say that thereÃ¢ÂÂs a very long way to go in the season and anything can happen in football, but the forces of Mordor very much have the power over the hobbits at Camp Nou. And their leader wonÃ¢ÂÂt be giving it up without a fight.
Winter window signings tend to fly under the media radar unless they are desperate Ã¢ÂÂ¬50 million season-saving splurges. Valencia picked up striker, Jonas, from Brazilian side Gremio just under a year ago to very little fanfare. In fact, the Mestalla trumpets werenÃ¢ÂÂt even dusted off and lips went unmoistened on the arrival of the forward, who scored three league goals last season. His first of the current campaign on Saturday kicked off proceedings in a very handy 2-1 win at Rayo - a victory that puts Valencia just one point behind Barcelona and with a huge incentive to keep up a solid run that sees just one league defeat in eight.
Before Sunday, LLL saw enough signs to suggest there was still fight left in the old sea dog of Levante, and the blog was proved right with the Valencia club bouncing back with a convincing 4-0 win over Sporting after three defeats. The win keeps Levante in fourth with a five point gap over Sevilla (MÃÂ¡laga yet to play) and probably needing just five more wins this season to stay up.
Still not playing that well, so thatÃ¢ÂÂs while theyÃ¢ÂÂll take a 1-0 away win over Zaragoza after a penalty won and converted by Alvaro Negredo.
The Getafe manager is surely a prediction king. Or someone who knows about football tactics - two skills LLL completely lacks. Ã¢ÂÂBarÃÂ§a suffer at set pieces as they are not tall, except for PiquÃÂ© and Busquets,Ã¢ÂÂ opined The Prophet two days before Juan ValeraÃ¢ÂÂs winner on Saturday from a corner.
The Mallorca manager picked up his first victory in his spell as Balearic boss. And so he should have done too, considering his team were playing Racing Santander.
A 1-0 win over Athletic Bilbao in the Basque country. DidnÃ¢ÂÂt see that coming.
This is getting silly. The Real Sociedad defender has only scored two goals this season. But they have both come from inside his own half. The first was against Athletic Bilbao, and the second was SundayÃ¢ÂÂs late winner against Betis. Quite, quite silly.
Angel di MarÃÂa
Although the Argentinean returned from injury with a goal in the win against AtlÃÂ©tico, the little tyke was back with facets of his game that LLL had thought were being phased out - the constant cheating, diving and faking injury. Ã¢ÂÂPathetic for a good player that doesnÃ¢ÂÂt need to it,Ã¢ÂÂ stormed Santi Nolla in Sport.
The Getafe performance was lethargic enough to have BarÃÂ§a fans frustratedly banging the side of their televisions to try and provoke some kind of reaction from the Camp Nou collective. It was only in the dying seconds of the game that BarÃÂ§a started to realise the mess they were in and began to react. To be fair, a goal was incorrectly disallowed for offside when it was a Getafe player, MÃÂchel, who got the final touch of the ball and a post was struck. But seeing as draws are the new defeats in la Liga, the result would still have left Real Madrid with a handy cushion at the top of the table.
The local press reaction to the defeat swung between despair, Ã¢ÂÂwe have to be realistic, the league is lost,Ã¢ÂÂ wrote Joan PoquÃÂ in Mundo Deportivo,Ã¢ÂÂ to semi-defiance, with SportÃ¢ÂÂs headline claiming that Ã¢ÂÂtheyÃ¢ÂÂll have to win at the Bernabeu.Ã¢ÂÂ
Of course, thereÃ¢ÂÂs also room for the barking mad, and the ever-reliable Lluis MascarÃÂ³, writing in the same paper, provided a big dollop of paranoid lunacy in SundayÃ¢ÂÂs edition. Ã¢ÂÂThe (Madrid) media cavern will magnify the euphoria with its propaganda campaign which is now unstoppable.Ã¢ÂÂ Indeed.
The home defeat to Granada sees Athletic having picked up just the single point in San MamÃÂ©s in the three games against Primera new boys, Rayo, Betis and SundayÃ¢ÂÂs visitors.
A home defeat for Espanyol against Osasuna, means there is even less good will than normal from a grouchy Paul from Barcelona, especially for his sideÃ¢ÂÂs neighbours.
Ã¢ÂÂWell that was rubbish. Things we learned from todayÃ¢ÂÂs match -
1) Espanyol desperately need a centre-forward. Alvaro, despite scoring, needs more time. Espanyol need an experienced striker.
2) Javi Marquez needs to get fit asap if we donÃ¢ÂÂt want next seasonÃ¢ÂÂs derby to be against Sabadell.
3) Osasuna ainÃ¢ÂÂt much cop and for the supposed Ã¢ÂÂtoughest team in la LigaÃ¢ÂÂ they ainÃ¢ÂÂt very tough.
4) Feigning injury is cheating. If you can get a yellow for diving you should get a yellow for this. OsasunaÃ¢ÂÂs number six (that would be Javad Nekounam -LLL) was a disgrace to football.
5) Injury time is totally random. A sending-off, a player down for nearly two minutes, a team constantly warned for time-wasting, six substitutions, only four mins !!!. Fourth official, you had a shocker.
6) OsasunaÃ¢ÂÂs support among part time Crusties has dropped. You used to see loads of mullets supporting them. Now their away support comes in a people carrier. WhatÃ¢ÂÂs happened? They used to have good away support.
Something learned from another match - that the Getafe result shouldnÃ¢ÂÂt stand because Getafe are one of the teams Sandro Rosell wants kicked out of the league for being too small.They could be playing Man Utd in Singapore instead. Much more important.Ã¢ÂÂ
For the opening 20 minutes of SaturdayÃ¢ÂÂs encounter, LLLÃ¢ÂÂs thoughts were probably echoed by the AtlÃÂ©tico supporters. Ã¢ÂÂWhy donÃ¢ÂÂt you play like this every week?Ã¢ÂÂ
LLL will probably go with Iker Casillas on whether it was a sending-off for AtlÃÂ©tico Madrid keeper, Thibaut Courtois, who brought down Karim Benzema to completely change a game where the Rojiblancos held the upper hand. The Madrid number one said the penalty and red card were probably justified going by the letter of the law but that Ã¢ÂÂI hope they change this rule.Ã¢ÂÂ
Oh dear. Another member of the very large Ã¢ÂÂused to be a good defender, then went to AtlÃÂ©tico MadridÃ¢ÂÂ brigade. The Uruguayan was outpaced by Cristiano Ronaldo for MadridÃ¢ÂÂs second goal, failed to clear a ball for the third and then gave away a penalty and picked up a red card for the fourth. Good work.
ThatÃ¢ÂÂs one point from the last nine games for the Betis boss, who saw his side lose 3-2 at home to Real Sociedad after the visitorsÃ¢ÂÂ miraculous late winner. Pepe Mel said that he would understand if he was fired, however that doesnÃ¢ÂÂt seem to be the plan for the moment, probably because Betis neither have the cash to pay him off or fund a replacement.
Bottom-of-the-table with just the single win and nine points. Oh dear.