Sevilla vs. Real Madrid  1 - 0

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Calderon slams Mourinho comments

17 September 2012 12:24

Former Real Madrid president Ramon Calderon feels coach Jose Mourinho was wrong to criticise his team after their 1-0 defeat to Sevilla.

The flamboyant coach said he "does not have a team" following the surprise loss, while also voicing his unhappiness with his side's collective spirit.

However, Calderon believes the Real players could throw the same accusation back at their mentor.

"Mourinho's comments don't help the team in any way. The players could just as easily say that they don't have a coach right now," Calderon told RAC1.

"It would be better to see these losses as incidents. I imagine that the players are not too happy with Mourinho's comments.

"I believe that the team is fully committed to the team. The players are giving their all out there on the pitch."

Real have already dropped eight points in the opening weeks of the 2012/13 campaign, and sit only 11th in the Liga table.

Article

Pepe calls on Real to lift

16 September 2012 15:32

Real Madrid defender Pepe has issued a rallying cry to his team-mates after they lost 1-0 to Sevilla on Saturday.

The Portugal international vowed to 'fight until the end', with the club now eight points behind arch-rivals Barcelona just four games into the new Liga season.

The 29-year-old rued the lack of defensive concentration which led to Piotr Trochowski's second-minute strike, but insisted attention will now turn to the Champions League clash against Manchester City on Tuesday.

"We will fight until the end, (it) is the motto of Real Madrid," he told Canal+.

"Eight points is difficult, but the most important thing is to know that the group has worked hard. Trochowski's goal made things difficult.

"We have to fight to the end, now we have to think of City. I think we were always in control. Again, we suffered from goal-kicks, which hampered our work later. We had a lot of ball possession, but they defended well and (conceded) no clear chances."

Article

Butragueno blames Real´s ´attitude problem´

16 September 2012 09:22

Emilio Butragueno has expressed his dismay at Real Madrid's current run of form, after they fell to defeat against Sevilla on Sunday.

The reigning La Liga champions were undone by Piotr Trochowski's second-minute strike, a result which leaves Jose Mourinho's side eight points behind arch-rivals Barcelona.

"There is a big deficit with Barcelona, but we must continue. On Tuesday we have an important match," the 49-year old told Canal+.

"We lacked the luck to get back into the game, and there was an attitude problem. We must be united, whether we are winning or losing."

The Spaniard went on to comment on Cristiano Ronaldo's much-publicised unhappiness at the club, but refused to be drawn into a discussion on whether financial motives are behind his apparent discomfort.

"He is a key player, hopefully he'll continue for many more years here," Butragueno added.

"(We already spoke about money), we need to return to normal."

Madrid begin their Champions League campaign on Tuesday, when they welcome Premier League champions Manchester City to the Santiago Bernabeu.

Article

La Liga wrap: Sevilla add to Madrid woes, Messi lifts Barcelona

16 September 2012 00:35

Sevilla heaped more misery on Real Madrid with a 1-0 win, while rivals Barcelona continued their perfect start to the La Liga season.

Defending champions Real were already five points adrift of league leaders Barcelona heading into Saturday's match after drawing and losing two of their opening three matches.

And that gap extended to eight points following Piotr Trochowski's goal in just the second minute of play.

The match started at a frenetic pace with the hosts taking the game up to Jose Mourinho's men.

A shot from the edge of the box inside the first minute was spilled back into the danger area by Iker Casillas but he recovered to stop Alvaro Negredo from tapping in the rebound.

Former Schalke midfielder Ivan Rakitic took the resultant corner where it was met by Trochowski, who had escaped the loose marking of Angel Di Maria and volleyed into the roof of the net.

In search of an equaliser, Real hit the post twice but could not prevent Sevilla from claiming their first win against the Spanish champions since October 2009.

Barcelona maintained their 100 percent start to the season with a 4-1 triumph against Getafe at the Coliseum Alfonso Perez.

Tito Vilanova's side laboured during the early stages of the match but took a single-goal lead into the break through Adriano.

Second-half substitute and two-time Ballon d'Or winner Lionel Messi then netted twice before a Javier Mascherano own goal robbed the visitors of a clean sheet, but David Villa rounded off the win in the closing moments.

Though the result may have been somewhat flattering, Barcelona moved back to the summit with a two-point advantage over their nearest rivals Malaga, who maintained their unbeaten start to the season at home to Levante.

Malaga, the surprise packets of this season's competition, ran out 3-1 winners thanks to goals from Javier Saviola, Joaquin and Francisco Portillo.

Meanwhile, Valencia ended their winless start to the 2012/13 campaign with a 2-1 victory over Celta de Vigo at the Estadio de Mestalla.

Valencia broke the deadlock through Sofiane Feghouli in the fourth minute before Michael Krohn-Dehli restored parity on 16 minutes.

However, the hosts restored their one-goal advantage five minutes into the second half after Aly Cissokho's headed home Tino Costa's cross.

Article

Rakitic: Modric is a step ahead

15 September 2012 15:26

Ivan Rakitic has praised the qualities of Luka Modric, claiming that the new Real Madrid signing's vision separates him from his peers.

The midfielder completed a 33 million-euro transfer to the Santiago Bernabeu from Tottenham in August and has already made a favourable impression on the Spanish champions' fans.

Speaking prior to Sevilla's encounter with Real in La Liga on Saturday, Rakitic took the opportunity to applaud the playmaking abilities of his Croatia team-mate.

"Modric is a great player, he is different from the rest. He thinks before others," Rakitic told AS.

"If 'The Special One' signed him, there is little to discuss."

Article

Ramos eager to defend title

15 September 2012 08:57

Real Madrid defender Sergio Ramos has warned his team they cannot afford to rest on their laurels after last season's La Liga success.

The defender feels Real would normally be favourites to win the league title as reigning champions, but is aware they have to respect every opponent and work hard in order to replicate last year's results.

"We have to do things at least just as well (as last season), continue to respect our rivals just as we always have and have to keep improving in order to go on winning titles," Ramos told Bwin.com.

"Normally we would be the favourites to win La Liga as reigning champions, but that doesn't mean anything. You can't live off the past in football, you have to prove yourself every day.

"It's true that last year we accomplished figures that are practically unbeatable and it was an extraordinary year. It was a well-deserved title for our team and now it's time to defend it."

Madrid take on Sevilla on Saturday.

Article

La Liga preview: Tough tests for Barcelona, Real Madrid

13 September 2012 22:43

Barcelona travel to Getafe as they look to preserve their 100 percent record in La Liga in their bid to regain the title they lost last season.

The 21-time La Liga champions seem to have made a smooth transition from iconic manager Pep Guardiola to former assistant Tito Vilanova.

Under Vilanova, Barcelona have won their opening three matches against Real Sociedad, Osasuna and Valencia, with Lionel Messi leading the way yet again with four goals.

But Saturday's game at the Coliseum Alfonso Perez will prove a big challenge after Luis Garcia Plaza's men upstaged Barcelona on their last trip to Getafe in November last year.

Getafe's recent form is also a cause for concern for Barcelona, with the club having claimed the scalp of reigning champions Real Madrid on August 28.

Real's surprise loss spurred the club into action and they head to Sevilla with a league victory and the Spanish Super Cup under their belt.

Following their 2-1 loss at Getafe, Jose Mourinho's troops bounced back with a win against Barcelona and a league victory at home to Granada.

Their opponents, Sevilla, are unbeaten this season but Real approach the game full of confidence having scored 15 goals in three previous encounters against the dual-Europa League winners.

La Liga's surprise packets Rayo Vallecano take on an Atletico Madrid side in red-hot form and boasting arguably the world's best striker in Radamel Falcao.

The Colombian striker has eight goals in all competitions, including a hat-trick in Atletico's 4-1 demolition of Chelsea in the UEFA Super Cup.

Vallecano's unbeaten start to the campaign is even more remarkable given last year's top-goalscorer Michu (15) departed for English Premier League club Swansea during the transfer window.

In other La Liga fixtures, Champions League participants Malaga will look to make it three wins from four at home to Levante, cellar-dwellers Osasuna play host to second-placed Mallorca, while struggling Granada welcome undefeated Deportivo La Coruna to the Estadio Nuevo Los Carmenes.

Top-three hopefuls Valencia, who are still searching for their first win of the season, do battle with Celta de Vigo, winless Espanyol face Europa League finalists Athletic Bilbao and Real Sociedad tackle Real Zaragoza on Sunday.

Article

Callejon wary of Sevilla threat

13 September 2012 08:59

Real Madrid attacker Jose Callejon has warned his team-mates not to underestimate Sevilla when they meet in La Liga on Saturday.

The reigning champions have won their past five encounters against Sevilla, but the winger was quick to point out his team's struggles at Estadio Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan.

"We know that whenever we go to Seville, it's going to be difficult. This is because of the team and its great players who always put us in a tricky situation," Callejon told the club's website.

"But I'm always saying it, we are Real Madrid and we have to go to whatever length to win because it's our objective."

The versatile attacker also looked ahead to Real Madrid's Champions League campaign, and said they had set their sights on top spot in Group D, which also includes Manchester City, Ajax and Borussia Dortmund.

"We're really looking forward to the Champions League. It's a tournament which we all enjoy playing," Callejon said.

"We've got some very difficult teams and we hope to play as well as possible to try to be first in the group."

Primera División table

# Team MP D P
1 38 +75 100
2 38 +61 85
3 38 +34 76
4 38 +21 66
5 38 +13 65
6 38 +3 57
7 38 +1 56
8 38 -16 53
9 38 +4 50
10 38 -14 47
11 38 -17 46
12 38 -21 45
13 38 -9 44
14 38 -9 43
15 38 -17 42
16 38 -17 39
17 38 -15 37
18 38 -29 36
19 38 -23 35
20 38 -25 34