La Liga Week 1: Real Madrid and Sevilla win while Barca stumble and Valencia lose

A quick roundup of the weekend games from La Liga, courtesy of FCBNews editor Nic.

A goal from new signing Wesley Sneijder meant Champions Real Madrid got off to a winning start against neighbours Atletico. Madrid started badly letting in a goal after just 58 seconds, Agüero sneaking in unmarked at the far post after Raúl Garcia flicked on Pernía’s corner. Raúl equalized for Madrid after 15 minutes superbly heading in a cross from Sergio Ramos. Madrid had to wait until the 80th minute for their winner, Guti squared a free kick to Sneijder and his shot was deflected past Leo Franco. It was a pretty good start from Madrid with good performances from Raúl, Robinho, Sergio Ramos and Guti while new signings Pepe, Drenthe, Sneijder and Metzelder all did well. Atletico should still do well this season, Simao and Agüero both looked lively.

Barcelona could do no better than a 0-0 draw against Racing Santander. Thierry Henry started on the bench along with Deco, but Messi, Ronaldinho and Eto’o found it impossible to break through a well organized Racing defence. Henry came on for the last 30 minutes and came closest to winning the game for Barça, in the 86th minute he took a pass from Ronaldinho and cut in from the left, in typical Henry style he tried to curl a right footer into the far corner, unfortunately for Barça the ball rebounded off the post. Despite playing against 10 men for the last twenty minutes Barça could not find the goal they needed. On the positive side for Barça was a fine debut from Touré Yaya playing in the defensive midfield position. For a full report of the Barça game go to FCBNews’s match report: Raciing 0-0 Barcelona.

Sevilla’s 4-1 victory against Michael Laudrup’s Getafe was marred by Sevilla defender Antonio Puerta collapsing after his heart stopped. Puerta was immediately treated by the Sevilla medical team and seemed to recover only to suffer another attack in the changing rooms. He was rushed to hospital in a serious condition but fortunately the latest reports say he is in a more stable condition. Sevilla also suffered to win the game, Getafe went 0-1 up through a goal from Pablo Hernandez after two minutes. Sevilla only recovered after Getafe had been reduced to nine men after Sousa and Cortés were sent off. Goals from Navas, Luis Fabiano, Kanoute and Kerzhakov gave Sevilla their win.

Newly promoted Almeria were surprise 0-3 winners against Deportivo. Negredo, Soriano and Crusat scored the goals for the Andalusian team who were perhaps unlucky not to have scored more. The two other promoted teams also won which is probably the first time all three promoted teams have won their first game. Murcia beat Zaragoza 2-1 with goals from Mejia and Baiano. Oliviera scored Zaragoza’s consolation with a fine chip. And Valladolid won 0-1 against Espanyol thanks to a Llorente goal. Espanyol were without key players Tamudo and De La Peña but would have expected to take something from the game.

Valencia started badly losing 0-3 at home to Villarreal. Both David Villa and Joaquin were sent off for the home team and Villarreal won easily through goals from Tommasson and new signings Rossi and Cazorla.

The only player to score twice this week was Mallorca’s Ibagaza as Mallorca beat Levante 3-0. His first goal was from a penalty and the second finished off a splendid counter attack. Güiza scored the other Mallorca goal.

In the remaining two games Recreativo and Betis drew 1-1 in the Nuevo Colombino. Sinama opened the score for the home team but Nano equalized for Betis. And Athletic and Osasuna drew 0-0 in what appeared to be an extremely dull game.

Nig writes on the Barcelona blog.

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