The Great Weekend Predictions - Round 22

Saturday

Almería (8th) v Real Madrid (1st)

The last eighteen months have been tough ones for
Ramón Calderón. Being detained in New York having been
mistaken for a narco-trafficker and using a
countrywide Jedi mind trick by claiming never to have
wanted Kaká, have taken its toll on the shy and
retiring Real Madrid president.

And that's why Calderón wants to reduce that tiresome
trip between his office to the golf course from
several kilometres to none, say 'Marca'.

The paper has revealed plans by the club to add an
18,000 seater sports pavilion, a luxury super hotel, a
race track (of course) and a golf course to their
training complex so Calderón can help improve his
current handicap of 15.4.

And not one red cent of the club's money will be used
to fund this vanity project, according to the paper -
"Ramón Calderón is looking for companies who can bring
in the necessary funding."

Expect Alfredo di Stefano being moved to the cheap
seats from the presidential balcony to make room for a
series of slicked-hair shifty hotshots, over the next
few months. Draw.

Betis (14th) v Deportivo (19th)

Such is the desperation in Spain to broadcast this
relegation thriller between two of the most
tantalising teams on the planet, that not one but two
tv channels will be broadcasting this match live.

But for those in Spain looking forward to a break from
Andrés Montes' incessant gibberings on 'La Sexta'
should not get their hopes up too high, as the last
time that 'Telecinco' pirated a match, their cameras
were positioned somewhere in orbit and could not see
the corner flags.

Just another normal day in the never-ending tv wars.
Home win.

Sunday

Zaragoza (12th) v Athletic Bilbao (16th)

With the Spanish economy about to collapse faster than
Jesus Navas in the penalty area, this perilous
pecuniary predicament has been reflected in a
positively flaccid transfer market with only 29.3
million euros worth of deals being struck. Valencia
were responsible for a large chunk of that with Ever
Banega coming to Spain in more ways than one.

One move that looked a dead cert to take place, but
didn't, was Zaragoza's prince of punks, Andrés
d'Alessandro swanning off back to Argentina. Instead,
the misfit midfielder will be sulking and swearing at
La Romareda for a few more weeks, at least, with the
Argentine transfer market being open until 16th
February. Home win.

Levante (20th) v Racing Santander (6th)

Normally on a Friday, this section is set aside for
the smallest of snippets about the latest white flag
waving footballer to leave Levante. But today, in the
most ironic of ironies, it's about someone staying.

It seems that not content with appointing Dennis wise
as executive director, Newcastle were on the brink of
signing Levante's Alvaro Maior, a central defender in
one of the worst back fours on earth, before thinking
better of it.

"We received an e-mail from Newcastle at 6pm (on
Tuesday) and we accepted the offer,” president Julio
Romero complained.

“It seems that they changed their mind since then.
They forgot to tell us about it," continued Romero on
the loss of three million euros which might have
helped keep the bailiffs from Mustapha Riga's door for
the next few months.

Atlético Madrid (4th) v Murcia (17th)

For football fans all over the world, the worst
possible news was announced on Monday. Pablo Garcia,
the Spanish football-hating hardman of Murcia, would
no longer be talking to the press, as every time he
does it results in a fine, suspension or a United
Nations resolution.

"I'm not going to speak till the end of the season,"
declared Garcia after last Sunday's defeat at the
hands of Levante. "Murcia lost because of the ref who
really ********* on us, like they have been doing in
other grounds."

Garcia's mood was probably not improved later in the
week, when it was announced that defender, Alvaro
Mejía, was being handed a three match ban for picking
up two yellow cards in the defeat and unleashing a
stream of abuse at the man in the middle. Some chill
pills needed, 'La Liga Loca' thinks. Home win.

Villarreal (3rd) v Mallorca (13th)

Both sides should be forced to play Sunday's game
wearing big pointy dunce caps as both sides were
kicked out of the Copa del Rey, this week, thus
missing out on all the fun of the action-packed
competition, which restarts at the end of month.

Villarreal won't be there to hand out their third
tonking of the year to Valencia, who face Barcelona,
instead, whilst Getafe face Racing Santander, ensuring
that the Catalan club look set to win something, this
season. Home win.

Valladolid (9th) v Valencia (11th)

Ronald Koeman's cunning plan of losing games but still
winning, Copa del Rey style, is not working out so
well in the league. Valencia are now nine matches
without a victory with just two goals scored. And that
record is unlikely to be improved upon, on Sunday, in
what will be a bad day for Valencia fans but a good
one for those of us looking to see whether Joaquín is
finally going to blub like a girl, in the middle of a
match. Home win.

Recreativo (18th) v Sevilla (7th)

Whilst channel surfing in idyllic idolness on Thursday
night, 'La Liga Loca' came across a familiar face on
'Cuatro' - but not in a good way. Who was that idiot
actor thinking that mumbling, having stubble and
threatening to bust caps in people's asses in 'Cuenta
atrás' makes him a tough, grizzled cop on the edge?

Why it was Dani Martin lead singer with Green Day rip
off band, 'El Canto del Loco' - a man not content with
trying to ruin all music, but doing the same for tv,
too. Away win.

Barcelona (2nd) v Osasuna (15th)

Apparently bulls can't see colour and focus only on
movement, so 'La Liga Loca's' metaphor of a trundling
Ronaldinho being a red flag to Osasuna's team of
filthy footballers doesn't quite work.

If FIFA regulations won't so pernickety, Messi should
be able to run out onto the Camp Nou turf in a suit of
armour, on Sunday, as that's the only thing that can
protect him against a team who are looking to get out
of relegation trouble the only way they now how. By
thumping. Home win.

Getafe (10th) v Espanyol (5th)

The absence of Tamudo with a broken arm wasn't enough
to persuade Luis Aragones to recall Raul to the
national side - an action that 'AS' are almost
certainly going to see as some kind of declaration of
war.

To show how sensitive a subject, the 'R-word' is to
the Spanish manager, a question  on a midweek radio
show as to the real reason why the Aragones was not
recalling the Real Madrid captain was met by Spain's
supremo completely losing the plot.

"You have lied all your life!" said a livid Luis to
the interviewer who had suggested that he was being
economical with the truth during the grilling. "You
are a coward and liar, a coward and liar, a coward and
liar, a coward and liar." Quite. Home win.

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