Gameweek 30 brought to fore a few players who were more or less dubbed as ‘failures’ for their respective clubs. Kaka, Cesc and Alexis played and made valuable contribution to their respective team’s cause. While Cesc and Alexis shared a couple of goals and assists each between themselves, Kaka put in an exceptional performance against Levante and found the back of the net from the spot.
It was goals galore in La Liga – however, Lionel Messi missed all the action, thanks to an injury which he succumbed to, against PSG, midweek. Ronaldo, Ozil and Higuain had super outings with the Argentine scoring nothing short of an outstanding goal from a fabulous assist by the evergreen Xabi Alonso. Elsewhere, Ruben Castro scored a brace and assisted a couple of more goals to give Betis a comfortable win over Granada.
Barcelona were without Lionel Messi, who suffered a hamstring injury against PSG. The little Argentine has not had any serious injury for quite some time and when he was taken off during halftime in the midweek Champions League clash, it certainly came as a surprise to football fans around the globe. Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi have taken their physical conditions to such outstanding levels that they look invincible and even the slightest of knocks appear alien to fans. At the end of the day, they are just a couple of extra ordinary athletes, who have taken themselves miles ahead of the rest. However, Mallorca started well and looked quite good but Cesc Fabregas and Alexis Sanchez – probably two of the most scrutinized and criticized players in the squad ended up with stellar performances. While Sanchez scored and assisted a couple of goals, Cesc took it to the next level and got the first hat-trick of his career and assisted a couple too. Mallorca certainly aren’t the yardstick to measure performances, notwithstanding the two Barca players certainly proved that there’s more to it than meets the eye.
Youngsters got a fabulous opportunity to gain some precious first team experience and the likes of Montoya and Bartra proved that they can chip in, in such long campaigns. Deulofeu and Santos too got some precious playing time. However, the best news was the return of Eric Abidal. Around the 70th minute, the Frenchman, redefined the power of the human spirit with his epic comeback – such instances do not occur often, but when they do, they are etched in the heart of fans forever. Iniesta and Pique were substituted to preserve them for the upcoming midweek clash against PSG.
Real Madrid were outstanding against Levante and surprisingly, Higuain and Benzema started the game, together for the first time this season. Benzema played on the left wing and Higuain started as the central striker. It wasn’t too much into the match that Levante drew first blood via Michel, around the half hour mark. Five minutes later, Alonso made an immaculate cross, which Higuain finished beautifully. Minutes later, Kaka got a goal and Real Madrid looked comfortable, en route to all three points. Ronaldo and Ozil (2) too registered their name on the scoresheet.
Atletico Madrid finally seem to be running out of steam and they failed to get all three points against Getafe. However, Atletico lost Godin and Suarez to red cards.
Malaga, despite all their Champions League exploits, lost to Real Sociedad. Carlos Vela scored an opportunistic goal followed immediately by Alberto De la Bella – a sledgehammer of a shot. Highly rated French winger scored the third with a clinical finish, from a fabulous Imanol Agirretxe-assist. Pedro Morales scored the first for Malaga courtesy a freak goalkeeping error. Later Inigo Martinez (Real Sociedad) and Roque Santa Cruz (Malaga) scored one goal each.
Moment Of The Week – The Return Of Eric Abidal
Goal Of The Week – Gonzalo Higuain
Assists Of The Week – Alonso (Real Madrid) and Imanol Agirretxe (Real Sociedad)
Alonso’s assist is also in the above video. For Imanol Agirretxe’s assist, check Sociedad’s third goal.
Full Time Results
Granada 1 (Aranda 72’)
Betis 5 (Ruben Castro 30’ & 32’, Inigo Lopez (OG), Dorlan Pabon 53’, Angel 85’)
Real Sociedad 4 (Vela 21’, Alberto De la Bella 24’, Antoine Griezmann 30’, Inigo Martinez 51’)
Malaga 2 (Pedro Morales 43’, Roque Santa Cruz 70’)
Real Madrid 5 (Higuain 36’, Kaka (P) 39’, Ronaldo 84’, Ozil 87’ & 90’)
Levante 1 (Michel 31’)
Deportivo La Coruna 3 (Bruno Gama 11’, Carlos Marchena 40’, Abraham (OG) 55’)
Zaragoza 2 (Postiga (P) 16’, Montanes 35’)
FC Barcelona 5 (Fabregas 20’, 37’ & 46’, Alexis 22’ & 38’)
Real Mallorca 0
Celta Vigo 0
Rayo Vallecano 2 (Piti 14’, Andrija Delibasic 83’)
Espanyol 2 (Moreno 51’, Wakaso 90’)
Atletico Madrid 0
Valencia 2 (Balenziaga (OG) 39’, Jonas 90’)
Valladolid 1 (Oscar 71’)
- Lionel Messi (FC Barcelona) – 43 goals
- Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid) – 29 goals
- Radamel Falcao (Atletico Madrid) – 22 goals
- Ruben Castro (Real Betis) – 15 goals
- Alvaro Negredo (Sevilla) – 15 goals