pablo hernandez

La Liga and Serie A roundup: Real Madrid smokes Deportivo, Juve downs Milan

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Across the world of soccer, La Liga and Serie A boast some of the most talented teams on the globe beside the Premier League, and below is listed a brief recap of few matches in each league this weekend (Saturday and Sunday).

LA LIGA

Deportivo 2-8 Real Madrid: There really wasn’t anything Deportivo could do in hopes of matching the obvious star power of Real Madrid. The scoring was led by a hat trick from Cristiano Ronaldo, who started working his magic in the 29th minute with a powerfully hit header inside the penalty area. James Rodriquez then struck a left-footer that sailed into the upper right-hand corner of frame, another wonderful goal. Ronaldo scored on an open net in the 41st minute, and Gareth Bale rolled the fourth one past Deportivo goalkeeper German Lux.  New loanee from Manchester United Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez notched a brace, including an magnificent volleyed goal in the 88th minute. Real Madrid, currently at seventh place in the league standings, looks poised to shoot up the table.

Atletico Madrid 2-2 Celta Vigo: Atletico Madrid needed a win to get to first place in La Liga past Barcelona (prior to the win at Levante). Unfortunately for them, Celta Vigo was sturdy competition, drawing first blood in the 19th minute on Pablo Hernandez’s eye-popping back-heeled volley. Gabi fed world class center back Diego Godin to head home the score just before halftime. In the 31st minute, Atletico defender Mirando managed to level the scoreline, but he also conceded the penalty kick that essentially handed the Celts an equalizer in the 53rd minute. Four points behind Barcelona, Atletico still has a solid position in league play, cemented in third place (with 8 pts.) for now.

Levante 0-5 Barcelona: Barcelona remains undefeated with a win streak that hasn’t broken since the beginning of the season. Match highlights and recap are available here.

SERIE A

Juventus 1-0 AC Milan: Two Italian powers clashed, and Juve came out of the match victorious on Carlos Tevez’s lone goal. Pogba held up with his back to the net inside the penalty box prior to his turn and pass that put Tevez through for a close-range finish. Fernando Torres, on loan to AC Milan from Chelsea for two years, made his debut as a substitute in the 76th minute. Milan didn’t have many occasions when they were solidly on the attack, but both squads stand in the top of the table.

AS Roma 2-0 Cagliari: Alessandro Florenzi provided the service on Mattia Destro’s 10th minute goal, and he the scored the second goal of the match, set free on a through ball before burying the low attempt and celebrating with his grandmother in the stands. Roma midfielder Gervinho displayed the best quality during that match, setting up Florenzi’s tally and generally urging his team forward with his playmaking abilities. With Juventus, Roma is the only team in Serie A to have won all of their league games so far. Cagliari’s fighting to remove themselves from the relegation area.

Palermo 1-1 Inter Milan: For Inter Milan, the goal was to get three points when they faced Palermo, but the Eagles made it difficult on the Black and Blues, notching the opening score of the match in the third minute to force a deficit right off the bat. Franco Vazquez picked Inter defender Nemanja Vidic’s pocket and then nailed his goal past Palermo goalie Stefano Sorrentino from a tough angle. Sorrentino was Palermo’s saving figure at points during the match, and Vidic nearly had a headed game-winner only to be ruled offside. Inter is positioned in sixth place, one point behind Udinese in the fifth spot and AC Milan in the fourth rank.

 

WATCH: Celta Vigo backheel goal is an instant contender for goal of the year

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It’s not easy to score on Atletico Madrid, but it gets a bit easier when you do what Pablo Hernandez did for Celta Vigo on Saturday.

With back to goal, Hernandez let a long 19th minute pass go over his head before back-heeling the ball out of the sky and into the goal.

[ ELSEWHERE: Premier League roundup | Bundesliga wrap ]

It was incredible from every angle and whether in slow motion or quickly (Thanks for finding the Vines, 101greatgoals.com):

A 27-year-old attacker’s goal helped Celta Vigo to a 2-2 draw against the reigning La Liga champs. And here’s an MLS connection for you: Hernandez played 14 games for DC United on loan from Defensor in 2010.

Not too shabby, Pablo. Not too shabby.

The draw has Atleti second in La Liga, with Celta two points behind on a win and three draws.

Chile, Ecuador and Ivory Coast release World Cup provisional squads, too

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The World Cup provisional rosters continue to roll in, with Chile, Ecuador and the Ivory Coast putting their groups out.

MORE: All the latest news on World Cup rosters

CHILE:

Arturo Vidal makes the 30-man despite a knee problem that forced him to undergo surgery late last week. Alexis Sanchez of Barcelona and Gary Medel of Cardiff City are two of the bigger names on the list.

Goalkeepers: Claudio Bravo (Real Sociedad), Johnny Herrera (Universidad de Chile), Cristopher Toselli (Universidad Catolica), Paulo Garces (O’Higgins).

Defenders: Gary Medel (Cardiff City), Gonzalo Jara (Nottingham Forest), Marcos Gonzalez (Union Espanola), Enzo Andia (Universidad Catolica), Jose Rojas (Universidad de Chile), Eugenio Mena (Santos), Mauricio Isla (Juventus).

Midfielders: Jorge Valdivia (Palmeiras), Felipe Gutierrez (Twente), Rodrigo Millar (Atlas), Jose Pedro Fuenzalida (Colo Colo), Pablo Hernandez (O’Higgins), Matias Fernandez (Fiorentina), Francisco Silva (Osasuna), Arturo Vidal (Juventus), Charles Aranguiz (Internacional), Marcelo Diaz (Basel), Carlos Carmona (Atalanta), Miiko Albornoz (Malmo).

Forwards: Alexis Sanchez (Barcelona), Esteban Paredes (Colo Colo), Eduardo Vargas (Valencia), Gustavo Canales (Union Espanola), Jean Beausejour (Wigan Athletic), Mauricio Pinilla (Cagliari), Fabian Orellana (Celta).

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ECUADOR:

The Ecuadorian squad is headlined by three Barcelona players (That’s the Ecuadorian club Barcelona before you get too fired up). Antonio Valencia of Manchester United will lead the squad into Brazil.

source:
Valencia

Goalkeepers: Maximo Banguera (Barcelona of Ecuador), Adrian Bone (El Nacional), Alexander Dominguez (Liga de Quito)

Defenders: Gabriel Achilier (Emelec), Walter Ayovi (Pachuca), Oscar Bagui (Emelec), Frickson Erazo (Flamengo), Jorge Guagua (Emelec), Juan Carlos Paredes (Barcelona of Ecuador), Cristian Ramirez (Fortuna Duesseldorf)

Midfielders: Segundo Castillo (Al Hilal), Carlos Gruezo (Stuttgart), Renato Ibarra (Vitesse Arnhem), Fidel Martinez (Tijuana), Cristian Noboa (Dynamo Moscow), Pedro Quinonez (Emelec), Luis Saritama (Barcelona of Ecuador), Antonio Valencia (Manchester United)

Forwards: Jaime Ayovi (Tijuana), Felipe Caicedo (Al-Jazira), Jefferson Montero (Morelia), Joao Rojas (Cruz Azul), Enner Valencia (Pachuca), Armando Wila (Universidad Catolica)

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IVORY COAST:

Tough and skilled, the Cote d’Ivoire team will trot out a number of world class midfielders and forwards. Yaya Toure and Cheick Tiote will form a hard-nosed tandem in the middle of the park, while the strike force includes a bevy of firepower that includes Gervinho, Wilfried Bony and Didier Drogba amongst others.

source: Getty Images
Bony

Goalkeepers: Boubacar Barry (Lokeren), Sylvain Gbohouo (Sewe Sport), Ali Sangare Badra (Asec Mimosas), Sayouba Sande (Stabaek).

Defenders: Kolo Toure (Liverpool), Sol Bamba (Trabzonspor), Didier Zokora (Trabzonspor), Serge Aurier (Toulouse), Arthur Boka (Stuttgart), Benjamin Angoua (Valenciennes), Ousmane Viera Diarrassouba (Caykur Rizespor), Constant Djakpa (Frankfurt), Brice Dja Djedje (Marseille), Jean-Daniel Akpa-Akpro (Toulouse).

Midfielders: Yaya Toure (Manchester City), Cheick Tiote (Newcastle), Serey Die (Basel), Max Gradel (Saint Etienne), Diomande Ismael (Saint Etienne), Didier Ya Konan (Hannover), Mathis Bolly (Dusseldorf).

Forwards: Gervinho (Roma), Didier Drogba (Galatasaray), Salomon Kalou (Lille), Wilfried Bony (Swansea), Seydou Doumbia (CSKA Moscow), Lacina Traore (Everton), Giovanni Sio (Basel)

Watch Live: Sunderland vs Swansea City (Lineups and Discuss)

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Gus Poyet gets to put a stamp on this amazing comeback with Sunderland, and will look to give their home fans a big sendoff against Swansea City.

The Swans made six changes as they take on the Black Cats at 10am ET live on Esquire or live online at NBC Sports Live Extra.

Garry Monk brings in Gerhard Tremmel for Michel Vorm in goal with the game meanningless to the visitors, as Jonathan de Guzman, Leon Britton, Ashley Williams, and Pablo Hernandez all come out, with the latter not even in the squad.

Needing bodies to replace those sitting, Monk has instated 18-year-old Adam Kingwande for the first time since signing from Hearts in January, he is on the bench.

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Sunderland also makes a few changes knowing they are safe, with Lee Cattermole out of the squad after turning an ankle last week, and Phil Bardsley also rested.

American striker Jozy Altidore is on the bench, as is Emmanuel Giaccherini in attack reinforcements for Poyet.  The Black Cats will hope to give their home fans a show and not show any hangover from the completion of their amazing comeback.

LINEUPS:

Swansea City – Tremmel, Tiendalli, Amat, Bartley, Taylor, Fulton, Shelvey, Dyer, Emnes, Routledge, Bony.
Bench – Cornell, Williams, Davies, Britton, de Guzman, Kingwande, Vazquez.

Sunderland – Mannone, Vergini, Bardsley, Brown, O’Shea, Bridcutt, Larsson, Colback, Johnson, Borini, Wickham.
Bench – Celustka, Altidore, Ba, Giaccherini, Mavrias, Agnew, Ustari.

Swansea City 0-1 Southampton: Late Lambert goal wins it for Saints (video)

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Southampton beat Swansea 1-0 at the Liberty Stadium on Saturday as Rickie Lambert’s stoppage time strike sealed all three points for Saints.

Coming into the match Swansea were safe from relegation and Southampton could finish now higher than eighth place so predictably both sides felt their way into the match. Early on Swansea had two great chances to scores as Pablo Hernandez and Wilfried Bony came close but both missed. At the other end Southampton’s teenage striker Sam Gallagher headed over from close range as the away side pushed to go ahead.

Late on Saints pressed for the winner and substitute Lambert was in the right place at the right time to hand Saints their best-ever points tally in the Premier League. With the win they remain eighth with 55 points from 37 games, while Swansea are 13th on 39 points.

MORE: Latest Premier League standings

Early on Swansea started superbly as Jonjo Shelvey dispossessed Steven Davis on the edge of his own box in the fifth minute but Hernandez saw his shot well saved by Artur Bourc and then Bony glanced a header just wide as the Swans were in the ascendancy.

Saints woke up after that slow start and teenage striker Gallagher was proving a handful up front. In the 33rd minute he should have put Southampton ahead as the energetic Nathaniel Clyne surged down the right flank and found Gallagher unmarked but he headed over the bar from six-yards out. That sparked Swansea into life as Bony was then played in moments later but blasted his effort over the bar with both teams pressing for the opener before the break.

In the second half Swansea tried to get hold of the ball but Saints kept pouring forward down the flanks and a surging run from Luke Shaw saw the England international pull the ball back for Adam Lallana but a last-ditch bloke thwarted Saints’ skipper from giving his side the lead. It all got a bit scrappy after that as meaty challenges flew in as both teams were safe of relegation and seemed happy to spray the ball around.

Rickie Lambert replaced Lallana for the final 30 minutes as Saints went to two up front in order to try and bag a late win away at the Liberty. Morgan Schneiderlin drilled a low left-footed shot towards goal but Michel Vorm saved easily as the two teams battled it out in the sun in South Wales.

The game looked to be petering out but in stoppage time a chipped ball from Steven Davis saw Ashley Williams try to clear the ball but it hooked it over his own ‘keeper and Rickie Lambert was stood on the line to shoulder the ball into the net.

LINEUPS

Swansea City: Vorm, Tiendalli (Taylor, 77′), Amat, Williams, Davies, Britton, Shelvey, de Guzman (Dyer, 65′), Hernandez (Emnes, 77′), Routledge, Bony. Subs: Tremmel, Taylor, Bartley, Fulton, Dyer, Emnes, Vazquez.

Southampton: Boruc, Clyne, Fonte, Lovren, Shaw, Wanyama, Cork (Reed, 86′), Schneiderlin, Davis, Lallana (Lambert, 61′), Gallagher (Ward-Prowse, 78′)

Goal: Lambert (90′)