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La Liga

La liga 2013/14 – standing after week 12

November 4th, 2013

Barcelona remains at the top of the table, still just one point ahead of Atletico and six in front of Real Madrid. 

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Narrow win in the Barcelona derby

November 4th, 2013

With the All Saints holiday on Friday, the Barcelona derby against Espanyol was played on Friday night rather than Saturday or Sunday as would be more normal.

Barcelona dominated possession from the outset, but were unable to break the Espanyol defence. Espanyol enjoyed a few moments of counter attack and came close to scoring after a mixup with Dani Alves, but Valdes made the save. Immediately afterwards Alves came close to opening the scoring but struck the Espanyol woodwork and in the end the first half ended goalless.

Back on after the break Barça looked revitalised and soon looked like they would score, with a Messi header that looked certain to go in saved by the Espanyol keeper, Kiko Casilla, and Neymar had a go at the goal too. In the end Neymar assisted Alexis to the only goal of the match in the 66th minute and while both teams sought to score, the remainder of the match was goalless.

1-0 Alexis (min 66)


La liga 2013/14 – standing after week 11

October 30th, 2013

Barcelona extended their lead at the top of the table last night, at least temporarily, with most teams in the Spanish League still to play tonight and tomorrow. 

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Barça continues unbeaten run against Celta

October 30th, 2013

Following Saturday’s clasico there has been now let up for the Barça squad, with an away match scheduled for last night against Celta de Vigo. While a number of key players were rested ahead of the Barcelona derby on Friday and the next Champions League clash against Milan next Wednesday, the team got into their stride right from the start.

Once again Alexis showed that his class, putting the visitors into the lead after eight minutes. Celta, managed by one time Barça captain and Barça B coach, tried to apply pressure by moving their defence forward, but the Catalans controlled the match and the home team watched Barcelona’s attempts on the goal coming to nothing, but they must have known is was just a matter of time.

Back on after the break saw Barcelona extend the lead, when Cesc Fabregas hit the bar, for the ball to rebound into the net off the back of the Celta keeper. And a few minutes later Messi set Cesc up to score again, this time cleanly putting the ball into the net.

0-1 Alexis (min 8)
0-2 Yoel (min 47)
0-3 Fábregas (min 53)


Clasico goes to Barcelona thanks to Neymar and Alexis

October 28th, 2013

Saturday was the big one, when Real Madrid visited the Nou Camp to play in “el clasico”. The event is one of the most widely anticipated matches in the world with Spain’s two biggest teams acting out on pitch the antagonism felt between centralist Spain versus Catalonia. At least the days of Jose Mourinho amping up the tension are over though.

Both teams started perhaps a little nervously, with neither doing much at first. And then Iniesta ran forward with the ball passing to Neymar, who scored the first in the 18th minute and the home crowd was ecstatic. It seemed to spur on Barça too, who were clearly in control of the match. It didn’t stop Madrid from making a good effort on the Barcelona goal towards the end of the first half, only stopped by Valdes.

The break seemed to have revived the visitors, with Barcelona not dominating possession to such an extent and allowing Madrid to take another go at the Barcelona goal. Again Valdes showed what he is paid for.

With Alexis on for Cesc, Madrid continued to apply pressure. However, Barcelona once again brought the game back into their control culminating in the 76th minute with the second goal of the night scored by Alexis. As they continued working, Alves came close to making it 3-0, but in the end it was Madrid’s last minute goal that clawed back the scoreline to 2-1. The goal came too late for the visitors though and the final whistle blew to give Barcelona three more points.

1-0 Neymar (min 18)
2-0 Alexis (min 76)
2-1 Jesé (min 89)


La liga 2013/14 – standing after week 9

October 21st, 2013

With Barcelona dropping their first points of the season, Saturday night provided a couple of hours anxious wait to see what would happen with Atletico Madrid. In the end Espanyol beat Atletico meaning they now fall behind Barcelona by a single point, while Real Madrid are trailing Barcelona by three points to take third place in the table.

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Goalless draw against Osasuna ends Barça’s winning streak

October 21st, 2013

While eight straight wins for FC Barcelona created a new club record for the start of the season, the dream of a new la liga record was ended on Saturday night when they walked away with a single point against Osasuna. The match was marked by the return of Carles Puyol after months laid off with a knee injury and while the Catalans controlled possession from the start, the Basques didn’t allow them to do anything with the ball when in their area. 

Leo Messi, who started on the bench after recovering from his injury, came on twenty minutes into the second half for Xavi, with Tello substituting Pedro almost 10 minutes later but even so, they were unable to penetrate the Osasuna defence. New boy Neymar and Cesc Fabregas both came close to scoring in the second half, but in the end it just wasn’t to be.

The match ended goalless, with a big week for Barça ahead. They play AC Milan in Italy on Tuesday and Real Madrid visit the Nou Camp for the clasico next Saturday. 

 


La liga 2013/14 – standing after week 8

October 7th, 2013

Barcelona remains at the top of the table as both they and Atletico Madrid remain unbeaten this season. Real Madrid remain in third place, followed by Villarreal and Getafe lying fifth. However, to put things into perspective, Barcelona and Atletico have nearly double the points of Getafe.

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Barcelona continues winning streak with 8 out of 8

October 7th, 2013

Barcelona continued their record start to the season under Tata Martino, with their eighth successive win. However, despite Barça dominating possession in the first few minutes it was Valladolid who opened the scoring, with a goal by Javi Guerra in the ninth minute. Alexis equalised soon after but despite the dominance of the Catalans the first half ended with one goal to each team.

Barcelona properly got into their stride in the second half, with Xavi putting the home side into the lead six minutes in thanks to Tello and Xavi, while – with Messi injured – Neymar was pushing hard. It didn’t take long for Barcelona to go further ahead, with Alexis scoring his second of the evening in the 63rd minute after being set up by Neymar.

Just a few minutes later and Alexis returned the favour despite the opportunity of scoring a hat trick and instead set up Neymar to make it 4-1. The squad should be satisfied with the result as they take a break from domestic football while attention turns on the World Cup qualifiers.

0-1 Javi Guerra (min 9)
1-1 Alexis (min 13)
2-1 Xavi (min 51)
3-1 Alexis (min 63)
4-1 Neymar(min 69)


La liga 2013/14 – standing after week 7

September 30th, 2013

Barcelona remains at the head of the table after their seventh win of the season, ahead of Atletico Madrid thanks to goals for. Saturday saw the Madrid derby at the Bernabeu, with Atletico beating third place Real Madrid, who are now five points behind thanks to a draw and a loss.

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