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Dec 16, 2014

Spanish women shine in dark year for men

MADRID (Reuters) – In a year when the men’s soccer and basketball teams flopped on the biggest stage and Rafa Nadal’s season was wrecked by injury and illness, it was the women who helped protect Spain’s reputation as a nation of sporting excellence.

The standout performers were swimmer Mireia Belmonte, who set two world records at the short course world championships in Doha this month, and badminton player Carolina Marin, who pulled off a huge upset to beat Chinese world number one Li Xuerui and win the women’s singles title at the world championships in Copenhagen in August.

Dec 16, 2014

Sport-Spanish women shine in dark year for men

MADRID, Dec 16 (Reuters) – In a year when the men’s soccer and basketball teams flopped on the biggest stage and Rafa Nadal’s season was wrecked by injury and illness, it was the women who helped protect Spain’s reputation as a nation of sporting excellence.

The standout performers were swimmer Mireia Belmonte, who set two world records at the short course world championships in Doha this month, and badminton player Carolina Marin, who pulled off a huge upset to beat Chinese world number one Li Xuerui and win the women’s singles title at the world championships in Copenhagen in August.

Dec 15, 2014

Aguirre, Herrera named in Spanish matchfixing case

MADRID (Reuters) – Japan coach Javier Aguirre, Manchester United midfielder Ander Herrera, Atletico Madrid captain Gabi and 38 others have been named in an alleged case of match fixing involving a La Liga match in the 2010-11 season.

Spain’s anti-corruption prosecutor filed its case in a Valencia court on Monday following a probe into Real Zaragoza’s 2-1 win at Levante on the final day of the campaign, which meant Zaragoza avoided relegation.

Dec 15, 2014

Soccer-Aguirre, Herrera named in Spanish matchfixing case

MADRID, Dec 15 (Reuters) – Japan coach Javier Aguirre, Manchester United midfielder Ander Herrera, Atletico Madrid captain Gabi and 38 others have been named in an alleged case of matchfixing involving a La Liga match in the 2010-11 season.

Spain’s anti-corruption prosecutor filed its case in a Valencia court on Monday following a probe into Real Zaragoza’s 2-1 win at Levante on the final day of the campaign, which meant Zaragoza avoided relegation.

Dec 15, 2014

Las Palmas eyeing King’s Cup upset at Celta

MADRID (Reuters) – Riding high in Spain’s second division, Las Palmas are looking to transfer some of that form into what could be one of the few upsets in the last 32 of the King’s Cup this week.

The Canary Islands club, who are three points clear at the top of the Liga Adelante, beat top-flight Celta Vigo 2-1 at home in the first leg, giving themselves a good chance of securing a last-16 clash against Athletic Bilbao or third-tier Alcoyano when they play at Celta on Tuesday.

Dec 15, 2014

Soccer-Las Palmas eyeing King’s Cup upset at Celta

MADRID, Dec 15 (Reuters) – Riding high in Spain’s second division, Las Palmas are looking to transfer some of that form into what could be one of the few upsets in the last 32 of the King’s Cup this week.

The Canary Islands club, who are three points clear at the top of the Liga Adelante, beat top-flight Celta Vigo 2-1 at home in the first leg, giving themselves a good chance of securing a last-16 clash against Athletic Bilbao or third-tier Alcoyano when they play at Celta on Tuesday.

Dec 14, 2014

Soccer-Champions Atletico crash to rare home defeat

MADRID, Dec 14 (Reuters) – Atletico Madrid squandered a chance to draw level on points with second-placed Barcelona when the champions slipped to a surprise 1-0 reverse at home to Villarreal in La Liga on Sunday.

Atletico dominated possession in a scrappy game but failed to convert what few openings they created and were undone when Villarreal forward Luciano Vietto cut inside his marker and drilled a shot past Miguel Angel Moya six minutes from time.

Dec 14, 2014

Soccer-Atletico crash to 1-0 home defeat to Villarreal

MADRID, Dec 14 (Reuters) – Atletico Madrid missed a chance to draw level on points with second-placed Barcelona when the champions slipped to a surprise 1-0 reverse at home to Villarreal in La Liga on Sunday.

Atletico had the better chances in a scrappy game at the Calderon but were undone when Villarreal forward Luciano Vietto cut inside his marker and drilled a shot past Miguel Angel Moya in the home goal six minutes from time.

Dec 13, 2014

Barcelona’s unexpected problem: scoring goals

MADRID (Reuters) – With a formidable forward line featuring Lionel Messi, Neymar and Luis Suarez, the last thing you would expect is Barcelona to have a problem scoring goals.

Yet if the Catalan giants are to get back to winning ways under new coach Luis Enrique after failing to secure major silverware last season that is exactly the problem that needs to be addressed.

Dec 13, 2014

Soccer-Barcelona’s unexpected problem: scoring goals

MADRID, Dec 13 (Reuters) – With a formidable forward line featuring Lionel Messi, Neymar and Luis Suarez, the last thing you would expect is Barcelona to have a problem scoring goals.

Yet if the Catalan giants are to get back to winning ways under new coach Luis Enrique after failing to secure major silverware last season that is exactly the problem that needs to be addressed.