Sport

Isco stars in politicised Madrid win

Monday, October 02, 2017

Print this page Email A Friend!


Madrid , Spain (AFP) — Isco scored twice as Real Madrid reduced the gap on La Liga leaders Barcelona to seven points, courtesy of a 2-0 win over Espanyol on a day where football was dragged into violent political clashes in Catalonia.

Barca had earlier extended their perfect start in La Liga to seven games in extraordinary circumstances as they beat Las Palmas 3-0 behind closed doors at the 99,000-capacity Camp Nou, following the police crackdown over an independence vote deemed illegal by the Spanish Government.

At least 91 people were injured as Spanish riot police fired rubber bullets and forced their way into activist-held polling stations.

Following La Liga's refusal to abandon the match, Barca decided to play behind closed doors as a means of protest.

Outspoken Barca defender Gerard Pique broke down in tears as he described the day as “the worst professional experience I have had in my life”.

The political tension also bubbled over at Santiago Bernabeu, where Real fans waved Spanish flags and sang “Viva Espana” (long live Spain).

On the field there was far less conflict as Real eased to an 11th-consecutive win over Barcelona-based Espanyol for their first home league win of the season.

Isco was denied the opening goal inside 30 seconds by Espanyol goalkeeper Pau Lopez.

But the Spanish international made no mistake when he prodded home Cristiano Ronaldo's pass for the opener on 30 minutes.

Ronaldo volleyed over and then fired straight at Lopez when clean through.

However, Espanyol had a slew of chances themselves to level.

Gerard Moreno hit the post just before the break, whilst Keylor Navas denied Marc Navarro and Nacho produced a brilliant goal line clearance to prevent Leo Baptistao a tap in.

Espanyol's profligacy was finally punished 19 minutes from time when Isco curled home his second of the evening at the end of a rapid counter-attack.

Victory lifts Madrid up to fifth behind Barca, Sevilla, Valencia and Atletico Madrid.

Valencia's great start under Marcelino Garcia Toral's tutelage continued with a thrilling 3-2 win over Athletic Bilbao.

Simeone Zaza and Dani Parejo's penalty gave the hosts a 2-0 half-time lead.

Aritz Aduriz reduced the arrears for Athletic, who have now gone six games without a win.

Rodrigo restored Valencia's two-goal cushion before Raul Garcia's late consolation.

The game of the day was undoubtedly at Anoeta where Real Sociedad and Real Betis drew 4-4.

Three times Betis led ,thanks to goals from Antonio Sanabria, Zoudhair Feddal, Joaquin and Sergio Leon.

But Sociedad kept roaring back as Diego Llorente's header four minutes from time salvaged a point after earlier strikes from Willian Jose, Mikel Oyarzabal and Xabi Prieto.

Villarreal get off to a winning start under new coach Javi Calleja as Cedric Bakambu hit a hat-trick to see off Eibar 3-0.

ADVERTISEMENT




POST A COMMENT

HOUSE RULES

1. We welcome reader comments on the top stories of the day. Some comments may be republished on the website or in the newspaper � email addresses will not be published.

2. Please understand that comments are moderated and it is not always possible to publish all that have been submitted. We will, however, try to publish comments that are representative of all received.

3. We ask that comments are civil and free of libellous or hateful material. Also please stick to the topic under discussion.

4. Please do not write in block capitals since this makes your comment hard to read.

5. Please don't use the comments to advertise. However, our advertising department can be more than accommodating if emailed: advertising@jamaicaobserver.com.

6. If readers wish to report offensive comments, suggest a correction or share a story then please email: community@jamaicaobserver.com.

7. Lastly, read our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy



comments powered by Disqus
ADVERTISEMENT

Poll

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Today's Cartoon

Click image to view full size editorial cartoon
ADVERTISEMENT