Join Now | 
HomeAboutContact UsPrivacy & SecurityAdvertise
Soccer America DailySpecial EditionAround The NetSoccer Business InsiderCollege Soccer ReporterYouth Soccer ReporterSoccer on TVSoccer America Classifieds
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalkSoccer America ConfidentialYouth Soccer InsiderWorld Cup Watch
RSS FeedsArchivesManage SubscriptionsSubscribe
Order Current IssueSubscribeManage My SubscriptionRenew My SubscriptionGift Subscription
My AccountJoin Now
Tournament CalendarCamps & AcademiesSoccer GlossaryClassifieds
Real Cedes Ground to Barca
ESPN Soccernet, February 18th, 2008 5:45PM

MOST READ

MOST COMMENTED

ESPN's Phil Ball looks back on a weekend in Spain where neither of the league's two best teams played very well. In the end, Real Madrid ended up ceding ground to second-place Barcelona for the second time in three weeks, losing 2-1 at Real Betis despite scoring in the first six minutes and having more than 60 percent of the possession. Los Merengues were felled by an opponent that found and exploited the team's weakness: defending against crosses. And after seeing its 1-0 lead evaporate through a pair of nearly identical crosses and headers, Ball says that Real "played as though another goal would come, just as long as they kept the ball and passed it around with no particular plan in mind."

Barcelona, meanwhile, had a similarly listless outing at La Romareda against Real Zaragoza, but the Catalans came away 2-1 winners thanks to a gift from referee Bernardino Gonzalez Vazquez. With the match tied 1-1 with 10 minutes to go, the TV commentators praised Juanfran for taking a lofted ball down on his chest and clearing it in one motion, but the linesman immediately raised his flag for handball. Not only did Vazquez point to the spot, but he also gave Juanfran a yellow card. Ronaldinho stepped up to convert the ensuing penalty-an extremely harsh decision against Zaragoza, which was the better team throughout. Barca's win was a costly one for Real, which has seen its nine-point advantage fall to five in the last three weeks.

Read the original story...



No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Section 2 Around the Net
Report: Raul to Join Cosmos This Week     
Former Real Madrid striker Raul Gonzalez on Tuesday reached an agreement to play for New York ...
Platini: Ballon d'Or Should Not Go to Ronaldo, Messi     
UEFA President Michel Platini believes the 2014 Ballon d'Or should not go to either Cristiano Ronaldo ...
Real's Bale, Ramos Miss Liverpool Clash    
Gareth Bale, Real Madrid's world record signing, and vice-captain Sergio Ramos are both out of Wednesday's ...
Ronaldo, Messi Could Break UCL Record This Week     
The world's two best players will have a chance to break Raul's UEFA Champions League goal ...
Report: Drones Pose a Problem for Sports Authorities     
The Associated Press reports that authorities around the globe are just starting to understand the threat ...
Neville: United Will Struggle Against Chelsea     
Sky Sports pundit Gary Neville thinks his former team Manchester United will struggle to deal with ...
LVG: United Can Still Win the League    
Louis van Gaal believes Manchester United can still win the Premier League title despite being 10 ...
Florida star Jordan exceeds expectations    
Savannah Jordan was the 2013 Soccer America Freshman of the Year and played for the USA ...
Reports: Bale to Miss Crucial Week for Real     
According to reports on Monday, Gareth Bale will miss a crucial week for Real Madrid after ...
Injured Lampard to Miss City's Trip to CSKA    
Frank Lampard was carried off on a stretcher as Manchester City beat Tottenham 4-1 at the ...
>> Section 2 Around the Net Archives