• Friday, December 19, 2014

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Freedom in the air

Real Madrid

Real seek perfect 20

LFP

Real seek perfect 20

La Liga leaders Real Madrid will look to make it 20 consecutive victories in all competitions as they travel to managerless Almeria on Friday for their final league outing of the year. The European champions head off to Morocco next week to contest the Club World Cup and will be keen to keep their...

Real’s Ronaldo breaks hat-trick record

Real’s Ronaldo breaks hat-trick record

Cristiano Ronaldo set two personal milestones as he led Real Madrid to a record-equalling 18th-straight win on a historic night at the Bernabeu. The Portugal forward has now scored more hat-tricks than any other La Liga player after completing his 23rd treble with his 200th Spanish top-flight goal. He put Madrid ahead by drilling in...

Barclays English Premier League

Reds face Real challenge

Brendan Rodgers has challenged his Liverpool players to rise to the occasion when they face holders Real Madrid in a crucial Champions League showdown at Anfield on Wednesday. Rodgers' side can't afford to lose any more ground in the race to qualify for the knockout stages after a shock loss against Basel in their previous Group B match. The Reds have been well below their best of much of the season and there were more worrying signs for Rodgers on Sunday...

LFP

Barca run riot

Barca run riot

Neymar scored a hat-trick and Lionel Messi got his 400th career goal as Barcelona stormed back to the top of La Liga with a 6-0 thrashing of Granada on Saturday. Real Madrid remained just four points adrift of the leaders as Cristiano Ronaldo's hot scoring streak continued in a 2-0 win at Villarreal. Barca stretched their run of consecutive clean sheets to seven games, but rediscovered their scoring touch after being held to a 0-0 draw at Malaga in midweek as Messi and Neymar shone. The Brazilian opened the scoring with a deflected effort before Messi provided the second with an inch-perfect cross for Ivan Rakitic to head home. Neymar made it three...

LFP

Casillas gets vote of confidence

Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti gave captain Iker Casillas a vote of confidence on Friday as the decorated Spain goalkeeper celebrated 15 years since making his debut for the 10-times European champions. Now 33, Casillas was a fixture for Real for well over a decade until he was dropped by Ancelotti's predecessor Jose Mourinho and has lost some of the aura that made him a hero to fans and earned him the nickname "Saint Iker". After captaining Spain to successive European...

Di Maria claims Real pressure not to play World Cup final

Di Maria claims Real pressure not to play World Cup final

Angel Di Maria has claimed his former club Real Madrid put pressure on Argentina not to play him in the World Cup final in another bitter chapter in his departure from the Spanish giants. Di Maria joined Manchester United from Real last month for a British record fee of 59.7 million pounds ($97.45 million)...

LFP

'Horrible Real'

Real Madrid captain and goalkeeper Iker Casillas has called for a big improvement after the European champions suffered a surprise early-season setback at Real Sociedad in La Liga on Sunday. Real were missing injured top scorer Cristiano Ronaldo for their second La Liga outing of the campaign but quickly went 2-0 ahead at the Anoeta in San Sebastian before losing control of the match and crashing to a 4-2 reverse. "The team was negative in everything, horrible, we did not play...

Ronaldo's scores bring Real Super Cup

Ronaldo's scores bring Real Super Cup

Cristiano Ronaldo scored twice as Real Madrid claimed the first European silverware of the season with a 2-0 Super Cup win over Sevilla in Cardiff. Ronaldo, starting alongside new recruits James Rodriguez and Toni Kroos, tapped in a cross from Cardiff-born Gareth Bale to give Real the lead. The Portuguese doubled his side's advantage with...

Rodriguez signs 6-yr deal with Real Madrid

Rodriguez signs 6-yr deal with Real Madrid

After scoring the most goals of any player at the World Cup, Colombia forward James Rodriguez signed a six-year deal with Real Madrid on Tuesday. The 23-year-old Rodriguez, who helped Colombia reach the quarterfinals in Brazil, passed a medical examination at the Sanitas Clinic in the northern suburb of La Moraleja and will be introduced to fans at the Santiago Bernabeu Stadium on Tuesday afternoon. "I'm very happy," Rodriguez said as he left the clinic. "Everything went well." Sports newspapers Marca and As said Madrid agreed to pay Monaco $108 million for Rodriguez. He is expected to join the squad Aug. 1. Rodriguez's goal against Uruguay in the round of 16 at the...

Brazuca-fest 18

Portugal missed an Eusebio

Portugal missed an Eusebio

Christiano Ronaldo's World Cup is over as well Portugal's. His hands were on his hips, eyes a bit watery and lips quivering. His expressions said it all: the quest of the world's best footballer ended in a whimper. At 29, Ronaldo knew well that his best chance to win a World Cup for...

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