The Taste of Modern Football – La Liga Round 9

Each round of football in La Liga has a different taste. The essential ingredient is the irregular nature of the competition.

The last round of FIFA world cup qualifiers has allowed the smaller teams of La Liga to accumulate hours of training with its consistent collective outcome.

Click the scores to view the highlights!

Osasuna 0 – Barcelona 0: The last round of international matches enabled the local team to get some rest and face a game with a close-knit block of players. Moreover, the current challenge of the Catalan team is to find variations in their game to be less predictable – reinvent themselves to continue at the top of world football. Due to the exhaustion accumulated by the huge amount of national and international matches, managers and coaches of Barcelona must anticipate how to pass the legacy to the next generation of fresh football players.

Espanyol 1 – Atletico Madrid 0: the Espanyol player, Victor Sanchez, predicted befor the game that the visiting team would have more difficulties facing because they “provide many players for national teams”. Despite the own goal by Atletico Madrid’s keeper – Courtois, the tactical error of the defender and debutant Alderweireld (allowing Espanyol striker to run behind his back and face the goalkeeper one-to-one) originated the mentioned outcome. Given the imminence of the next round of the Champions League, Diego Simeone – coach at Atletico Madrid – added that “losing is part of the game. We have clear what our objectives are: going game by game. This is same the same belief as before (the game)”.

Valladolid 2 – Sevilla 2: within the field, players from Sevilla have ambivalent performances that do not allow the team to define itself. In round 9, the team could not count with their leader, Ivan Rakitic (injured after the FIFA round). The visiting team caused a surprise with a two-goal lead but choked on its own ground and finished the game tied – without being able to identify what is happening.

The impact of the FIFA round of international matches is now clear. Surprisingly, it benefited the smaller teams in La Liga. This is not all: another round of the Champions League and Europa League has already started. Seven Spanish teams will accumulate more time on the field than the other 13 teams in La Liga. The irregular nature of the competition generated more random results all through round 9:

Real Madrid 2 – 0 Malaga: the white team showed an unusual strength to comfortably overcome Malaga, managing to concede only two goals. Angel Di Maria is establishing as the midfield leader and wants this fleeting spirit to endure at Real Madrid.

Valencia 1 – Real Sociedad 2: the visiting team won after eight rounds! Miroslav Djukic’s team does not find a leader and, therefore, cannot have a steady performance.

Granada 0 – Getafe 2: the visiting team coach – Luis Garcia – said that “we have faced stoppages in two different ways […] and then comes a marathon streak with three games in less than six days. Its Crazy”. This time, Getafe was able to overcome the madness and achieved its fourth straight win thanks to the defensive errors of the home team.

Almeria 0 – Rayo Vallecano 1: a game that was rather dull, that was heading to a draw when a free kick from Alejandro Galvez sealed the game. For the home team, the last in the league after nine rounds, it is only worth adding the comments of the coach – Francisco Rodriguez: “We’re screwed, just as all the people who feel something for this team, but we also have to be strong now”.

Real Betis 1 – Elche 2: the visiting coach – Fran Escriba predicted that “we are very concerned to win in Seville”. His preparation paid off as they also had the advantage that the local team is uncompromising – both in La Liga and in the Europa League.

Celta de Vigo 0 – Levante 1: Joaquin Caparros, Levante’s coach invariably maintains five players on the team. They are the towering players of every line – goal, defense, midfield and attack. The backbone of the team is made up by the players Keylor, Navarro, Diop and Ruben. Without any further ado before this solid team structure, Diop – the midfield leader – was the one who scored the final goal.

Athletic Bilbao 2 – Villarreal 0: the home team did not lose one game since they play at the new ‘San Mames’ stadium! The coach – Ernesto Valverde – said after the game: “We gave solid image”. In addition, the player of Athletic Bilbao – Mikel Rico – led the team with a protuberant level of football.

Round 9 showed us random results that we tried to analyze beforehand but under no circumstance we could predict. Now, we can state that the volatility of the competition will surely generate more diversity between the predictions and the results of round 10. A round that will have an outstanding game: the Spanish derby between Barcelona and Real Madrid, ‘El Clasico’. Is anyone encouraged to place a bet on the outcome of round 10? One suggestion to influence your decisions: wait for the end of the current round of the Champions League and Europa League matches!

About Nico Argentato

Spanish and English teacher, Sports Psychology student and music enthusiast. An innate passion for movement and rhythm prompted my early development in the sports world; participating in most sports that involve a ball. Now, I am also looking for the words that can best describe that vital energy: the music in football and world sports.
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