La Liga: Getafe Advance to 2nd Straignt Copa del Rey Final

Getafe, the little club that could, earned their 2nd consecutive spot in the Copa del Rey final with a 1-1 draw against Racing Santander Wednesday night.  Getafe advance to the final under first year head coach Michael Laudrup.

The 1-1 draw puts Getafe through 4-2 on aggregate.  El Geta now wait for the winner of the Valencia v Barcelona match to be played Thursday at 3:30pm.

The game wasn’t played without a bit of controversy however.  With Getafe down 1-0 Uche made a hard challenge against Garay, which sent the Racing player to the ground.  Uche appeared to plead for his teammates to play the ball out of bounds but to no avail.  Getafe continued with the play, and Albín passed the ball to Casquero who in turn scored.

Racing players were livid and went in search of an answer for not playing the ball out of bounds.  With Getafe simply giving shoulder-shurgs, Racing preceded to give Getafe a rough last 10 minutes, flying in with some terribly late and rough challenges, which saw Serrano sent off (but this was before the goal).  It’s a wonder that all of the Getafe players escaped without any injury.

Now the little team from outside Madrid will wait until tomorrow.  See a preview for Barcelona here at The Offside Barcelona (props to my friend Isaiah).

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UEFA Cup: Everton, Tottenham have the heroics but forget the fundamentals

Everton 2, Fiorentina 0  (Fiorentina wins 4-2 on penalties)

The curse of the 12-yard kick. Yakubu faked out Fiorentina’s keeper, but hit the post. Jagielka tried to sky it top left corner, but he missed down the middle instead. Despite Everton’s dominance at home in regulation time, you could sort of tell it was still Fiorentina’s game. Andy Johnson put the first one in, earning vocal support from the crowd for the rest of the game. Mikel Arteta provided the shock, however, ripping a shot from 30 yards out which caught the Italians off guard. This loss stings, but it doesn’t take away from the fact Everton have found consistency in play and a confidence that they belong in the top five. Timmy Howard was in net, but couldn’t get a jump on any of the penalties including Mario Santana’s which sent Fiorentina onto the quarterfinals. With 9 games left in the EPL, the Toffees can now concentrate on finding their way to higher ground – a place they might even deserve to be – the UCL.

Tottenham 1, PSV Eindhoven 0 (PSV wins 6-5 on penalties)

Who else but Dimitar Berbatov to score the equalizer away from home? It was Jermaine Jenas and Pascal Chimbonda, however, who couldn’t hit the crucial penalties that a young PSV seemed to ease through. Berbatov was kept quiet for 80 minutes until – as if not to be shown up by Arteta’s long range bomb – the Bulgarian unleashed a ferocious volley that blew by PSV’s keeper Gomes. The Hotspur were resilient, but one can certainly question Juande Ramos’ need to alter the formations and tactics on the fly – his insertion of Lee Young-Pyo for his first appearance in 2 months, Zokora at holding mid (which I liked actually), etc. They equalized away from home, however, and got the result they needed until the end. Ramos summed it up nicely to ESPN Soccernet…”You can’t train for penalty pressure”. Sounds like another post in the making…

Other Results:

Zenit St. Petersburg 2, Marseille 0 (Zenit win on away goals, 3-3) – it’s not that Marseille didn’t have their chances, but the away goal they let up in France came back to bite them in the ass; Djibril Cisse was kept quiet, while no one had an answer for Pavel Pogrebniak who struck for a brace and put the Russians through

Hamburg SV 3, Bayer Leverkusen 2 (Leverkusen wins on away goals, 3-3) – HSV had the attacking edge, but Leverkusen converted first. Rafael Van der Vaart led a potent attack, however, that mustered three in a decent effort that unfortunately need 4 goals to go through. Theofanis Gekas was again the decider in the issue scoring Leverkusen’s push through goal. Jose Paolo Guerrero and Trochowski also scored for HSV, while Sergei Barbarez found the first goal for Leverkusen.

Getafe 1, Benfica 0 (Getafe won 3-1 on aggregate) – Benfica sputtered to another loss this one coming several days after their now former boss Jose Antonio Camacho left his post (i.e. was sacked). There was no real urgency coming from the Portuguese and Getafe used that to extend their ‘cinderella run’ into the UEFA Cup quarterfinals. Apparently, Manchester United assistant Carlos Quieroz is in Benfica’s sights for the manager’s position – and that would be great news for Freddy Adu.

Anderlecht 2, Bayern Munich 1 (Bayern won 6-2 on aggregate) – Bayern lost the game but won the war and also gave some invaluable experience to some of their younger players in the process. Young Brazilian central defender Breno has a bright future in Munich and he got his first run-out in the UEFA Round of 16. Highly-touted prospect Toni Kroos also played the first half and left seemingly with a knock. Both 18 year olds were a bit outplayed by Anderlecht’s 20-year old Ukranian Aleksandr Yakovenko, but they didn’t need to shine – they just needed to win.

Action Continues…

Werder Bremen vs. Glasgow Rangers (Rangers hold 2-0 lead) – Rangers firmly hold the lead in this one and if they don’t blow up should find themselves in the quarterfinals.

Sporting Lisbon vs. Bolton (Tied 1-1) – Bolton’s Gary Megson has opted for a second-tier line-up in this one as he wants to rest Diouf, Nolan, Jaaskaleinen, McCann, O’Brien, Campo, and Ricardo Gardner for a relegation battle vs. Wigan this coming weekend. Staving off relegation over European glory? Bold, but smart. Still no Johann Smith for this one though.

England’s UEFA teams in trouble, Scots sit pretty

Fiorentina 2, Everton 0

Fiorentina kept Everton to 1 shot on goal…1 measly shot. The chaos started early for the Toffees as the Italians were relentless, attacking from the get-go. Tim Howard was the only thing keeping Everton in the game as Tim Cahill couldn’t get anything working past the midfield, Yakubu was border-line non-existent as well. David Moyes kept pressing onwards though, determined to leave Florence with an away goal. He inserted Arteta and Andy Johnson in an attempt to wake up the offense. No dice. Howard wasn’t beaten until the 70th minute when Zdravko Kuzmanovic rocketed a shot right outside the penalty box. Ricardo Montolivo – a wing midfielder heavily touted in the Serie A – got the second ten minutes later after a nice exchange left him open to bury a first-time volley past Howard. The American goalkeeper was probably man of the match as a rout looked possible from the beginning.

PSV Eindhoven 1, Tottenham 0

The Spurs had their chances, but ultimately it was young Jefferson Farfan’s day. The Peruvian youngster – although it seems like he’s been in PSV’s set-up for the longest time – hit the only goal of the game in the 34th minute. Tottenham has cooled down considerably since their Carling Cup victory a couple weeks ago, but with Woodgate and King returning in the back, you would expect a different score-line. In fact, the two veterans weren’t at fault for Farfan’s goal. Gilberto, who had a pretty terrible European-debut for Juande Ramos, toyed with the ball in the back and Farfan made him pay. He stripped the Brazilian and proceeded to give PSV the 1-0 advantage. Both Robbie Keane and Dimitar Berbatov were firing, but nothing was finding the target and the result stuck. The Spurs now face a tough away leg in Eindhoven come next week – by then, they could be up to the challenge.

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La Liga: Madrid Celebrate…Getafe Scores…Madrid Cries

In case you haven’t seen any of the commotion from the Madrid – Getafe game, here is the highlight that may seal the deal that Real Madrid either get helped immensely by the ref, or they get screwed six ways to Sunday.

The premise is Real Madrid score what looks to be a goal, only to have the goal waved off for offsides. While Robben and Madrid are still jumping around and celebrating, Getafe put the ball back into play, and go on essentially a 6-2 break. Uche then gets a great pass across the middle and slots it past Iker Casillas for the win.

You can be the judge on whether it should count or not. I certainly think it does. Why not? Once you put the ball down and back into play, it’s game on. Serves them right for celebrating.

AS printed out this cover today with the headline Pardillos which means ‘Stooges’.

And how.

If you want to see a bigger roundup of La Liga action, go see my buddy Striker here

One-Liner guide to La Liga- Jornada 25

The One-liner Guide to La Liga is back like a Rolling Stones reunion tour.  Let’s go.
Your Spanish Cosita

Each town in Spain has their own feria. Feria is basically, a carnival. But they are the most intense week long carnivals you will ever be a part of in your life. Spain’s most famous feria is ultimately the Feria de Sevilla, which is always held in April. The Feria de Sevilla was started in 1847 as a cattle trading fair, but quickly escalated into the party that it is today. This is one of the most traditional ones where women still dress in the typical flamenco dress. The ferias are also well known for having casetas which are the typical ‘little houses’ along the streets were people go and dance and eat.

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One-liner guide to La Liga–Jornada 4 ¡Qué guay!

In my constant quest to indocrinate the Western World in the joy that is the Spanish culture, I present to you sangria. Now, you can make sangria in lots of different ways, but I give you my recipe, which I find to be the best. It’s adapted from a few Spanish recipes, but I find it to be the best tasting, sometimes a bit strong.

1 bottle 750ml red wine (white just isn’t the same)
1 to 1.5 cups of Brandy (no rum!)
2 oranges
1 apple (the apple sucks a lot of the flavor out)
A bunch of Cherries
1 lemon
1 lime
2 20 oz bottles of Sprite or 7-up
Sugar-add to taste
Cut the fruit into little pieces, you don’t have to skin the fruit if you don’t want. Add the alcohol together, then put in the fruit and add sugar. Don’t worry about adding too much sugar as it should be somewhat sweet, but the bottles of 7-up take out the huge alcohol taste (if my Spanish family knew I was putting 7-up in they would kill me). When done, settle in for a great week in La Liga. (Hey, if I could buy Cruzcampo or Mahou in the states, I wouldn’t have to make sangria!)

And without further ado, CHI’s very own One Liner Guide to La Liga–Jornada 4
As always kickoffs are in Spanish time, (minus 6 hours for the East Coast, etc)

 

Menudo Partidazo of the week!

Barcelona-Sevilla Saturday, 22:00 La Sexta
Both had 3-0 games in the Champions League but on other sides of the win loss column, does Sevilla have what it takes to win La Liga this season?

The rest after the jump

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