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Apr 22, 2014

Soccer-Familiar foe Guardiola blocking Real path to glory

MADRID, April 22 (Reuters) – The last thing Real Madrid wanted was another Champions League semi-final clash against Bayern Munich and on Wednesday they will need to get the better of a familiar foe who very much appears to have their number.

Pep Guardiola, whose Bayern side play their last four, first leg at the Bernabeu, was appointed as coach of the German champions at the end of last season after taking a year out to recover from a trophy-laden but draining four years in charge of Real’s arch-rivals Barcelona.

Apr 21, 2014

Atletico looking to land another blow on Mourinho

MADRID (Reuters) – Atletico Madrid sent Jose Mourinho packing without a major trophy in his final season in Spain and the surprise Champions League semi-finalists are itching to land another blow on the Portuguese coach.

Mourinho’s Chelsea play their last four, first leg at the Calderon on Tuesday against an Atletico side riding high in La Liga and through to the semi-finals of Europe’s elite club competition for the first time in 40 years.

Apr 21, 2014

Soccer-Atletico looking to land another blow on Mourinho

MADRID, April 21 (Reuters) – Atletico Madrid sent Jose Mourinho packing without a major trophy in his final season in Spain and the surprise Champions League semi-finalists are itching to land another blow on the Portuguese coach.

Mourinho’s Chelsea play their last four, first leg at the Calderon on Tuesday against an Atletico side riding high in La Liga and through to the semi-finals of Europe’s elite club competition for the first time in 40 years.

Apr 20, 2014

Messi free kick ends Barcelona’s nightmare run

MADRID (Reuters) – Lionel Messi smashed in a superb free kick to complete a 2-1 comeback win for injury-hit Barcelona at home to Athletic Bilbao on Sunday that kept alive their slim hopes of a fifth La Liga title in six years.

After a wretched 12 days when they were eliminated from the Champions League by Atletico Madrid, beaten in the King’s Cup final by Real Madrid and suffered a shock 1-0 reverse at lowly Granada in La Liga, Barca badly needed a morale-boosting victory in front of their fans at the Nou Camp.

Apr 20, 2014

Messi free kick ends Barcelona’s nightmare run

MADRID (Reuters) – Lionel Messi smashed in a superb free kick to complete a 2-1 comeback win for injury-hit Barcelona at home to Athletic Bilbao on Sunday that kept alive their slim hopes of a fifth La Liga title in six years.

After a wretched 12 days when they were eliminated from the Champions League by Atletico Madrid, beaten in the King’s Cup final by Real Madrid and suffered a shock 1-0 reverse at lowly Granada in La Liga, Barca badly needed a morale-boosting victory in front of their fans at the Nou Camp.

Apr 20, 2014

Soccer-Messi free kick ends Barcelona’s nightmare run

MADRID, April 20 (Reuters) – Lionel Messi smashed in a superb free kick to complete a 2-1 comeback win for injury-hit Barcelona at home to Athletic Bilbao on Sunday that kept alive their slim hopes of a fifth La Liga title in six years.

After a wretched 12 days when they were eliminated from the Champions League by Atletico Madrid, beaten in the King’s Cup final by Real Madrid and suffered a shock 1-0 reverse at lowly Granada in La Liga, Barca badly needed a morale-boosting victory in front of their fans at the Nou Camp.

Apr 20, 2014

High-flying Atletico inspired by terror victim

MADRID (Reuters) – If Atletico Madrid crown a remarkable season by winning La Liga, coach Diego Simeone and his players may remember March 29 and their 2-1 comeback victory at Athletic Bilbao as the moment they truly started to believe.

The match at fourth-placed Bilbao’s daunting San Mames arena was seen as one of Atletico’s toughest of the season finale and failure would have severely dented their chances of beating Barcelona and Real Madrid to the title.

Apr 20, 2014

Soccer-High-flying Atletico inspired by terror victim

MADRID, April 20 (Reuters) – If Atletico Madrid crown a remarkable season by winning La Liga, coach Diego Simeone and his players may remember March 29 and their 2-1 comeback victory at Athletic Bilbao as the moment they truly started to believe.

The match at fourth-placed Bilbao’s daunting San Mames arena was seen as one of Atletico’s toughest of the season finale and failure would have severely dented their chances of beating Barcelona and Real Madrid to the title.

Apr 18, 2014

Atletico close on title with win over stubborn Elche

MADRID (Reuters) – Atletico Madrid stayed firmly on course for a surprise La Liga title triumph when a Miranda header and Diego Costa’s late penalty secured an unconvincing 2-0 win for the leaders at home to Elche on Friday.

David Villa had a penalty saved shortly after halftime at a raucous Calderon stadium, packed with fans enjoying their team’s best season in nearly 20 years, and nerves were jangling when centre back Miranda rose at the back post to nod a Jose Sosa corner powerfully into the net 18 minutes from time.

Apr 18, 2014

Soccer-Atletico close on title with win over stubborn Elche

MADRID, April 18 (Reuters) – Atletico Madrid stayed firmly on course for a surprise La Liga title triumph when a Miranda header and Diego Costa’s late penalty secured an unconvincing 2-0 win for the leaders at home to Elche on Friday.

David Villa had a penalty saved shortly after halftime at a raucous Calderon stadium, packed with fans enjoying their team’s best season in nearly 20 years, and nerves were jangling when centre back Miranda rose at the back post to nod a Jose Sosa corner powerfully into the net 18 minutes from time.