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REAL MADRID MATCH PREVIEW: LET’S NOT “BASQUE” IN OUR MIDWEEK WIN: IT’S TIME TO FOCUS ON LA LIGA
Posted By Timothy Ashe Jr. On Feb 5 2011 @ 5:03 pm In LFP | No Comments
10th place Real Sociedad will face 2nd ranked Real Madrid tomorrow in Madrid at the Santiago Bernabeu. The recently promoted Basque team, Sociedad, is highly motivated to deal “los blancos” another devastating blow to their title hopes. Currently, Real Madrid sits seven points behind Barcelona in the league table with Barca set to take on Atletico Madrid tonight in the Nou Camp. Madrid passed through to the Copa Del Rey final midweek in the Bernabeau after knocking off Sevilla to draw a second shot at Barca. That match is set for April 20th at “El Mestalla “(Valencia’s stadium). For now, Jose Mourinho has reiterated that the focus is on “la liga”.
When the two teams met on September 18th in San Sebastian (in Anoeta), Real Madrid struggled defending the likes of Raul Tamudo (who scored) and Xabi Prieto (the wily veteran) with a 2-1 victory thanks to Cristiano Ronaldo’s rocket free kick which took a lucky deflection off of Pepe. Pepe (the Portuguese defender) will likely come off the bench for this match since he’s recently come off of an injury that’s sidelined him for a bunch of matches. This time around, there’s no Gonzalo Higuain. He’s still recuperating after his back surgery from last month but Madrid has brought in Emmanuel Adebayor from Man City. Ade finished brilliantly a few days ago, slamming home a close range shot to put the “icing on the cake” against Sevilla in the Copa del Rey semi final match. With both teams looking to storm forward, this should be an exciting match. Madrid has been nearly unbeatable at home and will rely on Cristiano once again tomorrow. He’s scored 32 goals this season in all competitions meaning that he puts one through once every two matches. The bigger question is whether we’ll see anything from Karim Benzema (the French striker whose presence continually garners attention). Mourinho has criticized his play throughout the season and it was recently reported that Real Madrid rejected a loan bid from Italian side Juventus during the January transfer window for Benzema. DiMaria, CR7, Xabi Alonso, and Iker Casillas will all have to play together to fend off the Sociedad if they want to continue their voyage to position themselves for a legitimate shot to take down Barca for the league title. Expect a lot of Basque fans in the 70,000 plus capacity Bernabeau. I expect another 2-1 victory for “los merengues” with lots of passionate play.
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