Sunday, September 13, 2009

Espanyol 0 - 3 Real Madrid

Madrid maintain perfect start

Scoring Summary
Espanyol Real Madrid
Esteban Granero (39)
Guti (77)
Cristiano Ronaldo (90)

Match Stats
Espanyol Real Madrid
Shots (on Goal) 12(3) 17(6)
Fouls 17 17
Corner Kicks 4 6
Offsides 2 3
Time of Possession 51% 49%
Yellow Cards 2 2
Red Cards 0 0
Saves 3 3

Match Information
Stadium: Estadio Olimpico de Montjuic, Spain
Attendance: 45,000
Match Time: 19:00 UK
Alfonso Pérez Burrull (Referee)

Espanyol Real Madrid
1 Carlos Kameni 1 Iker Casillas
18 Juan Forlin 21 Christoph Metzelder
16 Nicolas Pareja 18 Raúl Albiol
3 David García 12 Marcelo
2 Francisco Chica Torres 2 Álvaro Arbeloa
11 Verdú 14 Guti
22 Moises Hurtado 22 Xabi Alonso
7 Shunsuke Nakamura 11 Karim Benzema
10 Luis Garcia 24 Esteban Granero
23 Raúl Tamudo 8 Kaká
24 Iván Alonso 20 Gonzalo Higuaín
9 Iván De la Peña Ruud van Nistelrooy 17
20 Coro Jerzy Dudek 13
14 Ben Sahar Mahamadou Diarra 6
12 Facundo Sebastián Roncaglia Raúl 7
25 Cristian Alvarez Cristiano Ronaldo 9
8 José Maria Callejón Lassana Diarra 10
5 Ivan Pillud Ezequiel Garay 19
Royston Drenthe 15
Coro for Iván Alonso (45)
Cristiano Ronaldo for Karim Benzema (66)

Iván De la Peña for Shunsuke Nakamura (45)
Raúl for Gonzalo Higuaín (75)

José Maria Callejón for Raúl Tamudo (85)
Mahamadou Diarra for Kaká (81)

Yellow Cards
Verdú (52)
Esteban Granero (68)

Francisco Chica Torres (56)
Xabi Alonso (77)

· Club Squads: Espanyol | Real Madrid
Updated: September 12, 2009, 9:49 PM UK

Real Madrid preserved their 100% record with a comfortable 3-0 win at Espanyol in the Primera Division to join fierce rivals Barcelona at the top of the table after two rounds of the championship.
Esteban Granero, Guti and Cristiano Ronaldo bagged the goals to give Manuel Pellegrini's side a somewhat flattering win against an Espanyol team playing their first competitive match at their Cornella-El Prat stadium.

The Catalans were determined to turn it into a tribute to their former captain Dani Jarque, who died of a heart attack last month.

In the stadium's inauguration, Jarque had led the team out and starred as Espanyol beat Liverpool 3-0.

But he was dead less than a week later and there was a minute's silence in his honour before kick-off.

That was to be expected.

But what was not expected was the sight of the world's most expensive player warming the Madrid bench.

Ronaldo was left out by Pellegrini, along with Raul and Lassana Diarra, but the Chilean coach was surely thinking ahead to Tuesday's Champions League clash with FC Zurich in Switzerland.

Their absence meant a chance in the starting line-up for Guti, Granero and Gonzalo Higuain in a rather different Madrid XI.

But summer signings Kaka, Karim Benzema and Xabi Alonso all started in what remained a dangerous-looking Madrid attack.

As it was, though, the opening goal almost came from the unlikeliest of sources after five minutes, when Christoph Metzelder blasted a left-foot shot over the bar from close range.

Espanyol were also looking dangerous early on and the Catalans could have gone ahead after 20 minutes but Iker Casillas did well to save Moises Hurtado's right-foot effort after the midfielder was set up by Luis Garcia.

Joan Verdu then went close for the home side and Raul Tamudo almost made contact with an Ivan Alonso cross as the locals gave as good as they got.

Alvaro Arbeloa was then forced to clear desperately with Alonso set to pounce.

But Madrid weathered the storm and, after Benzema had shot wide and Carlos Kameni produced a brilliant acrobatic save to deny Marcelo, Granero gave the visitors the lead.

The midfielder, who came through the Madrid youth system but has spent the last two seasons at Getafe, slotted home a clinical angled drive following a neat one-two with Kaka.

It was the first ever competitive goal at Cornella and the player raised his hands skywards in a tribute to Jarque.

Just before half-time, Moises could have levelled for Mauricio Pochettino's side but drilled a low effort just the wrong side of the post.

New Espanyol captain Ivan De La Pena, who is still short of fitness following injury, came on for Shunsuke Nakamura at the break.

But Espanyol were struggling to break down their illustrious visitors and there were few chances of note until late in the game, although Tamudo came close to connecting with a miscued shot from substitute Ferran Corominas with 20 minutes left.

Ronaldo and Raul came on for Benzema and Higuain but Kaka was once again the provider as Madrid went two up.

The Brazil forward went past two players with a lovely piece of skill and rolled the ball back for the unmarked Guti to finish easily.

Guti then turned provider in the final minute, picking our Ronaldo with an exquisite pass with the outside of his boot, and the former Manchester United forward coolly slotted a neat finish through Kameni's legs to complete a satisfactory afternoon for Madrid, albeit with what was a flattering scoreline in the end.

Pellegrini's side have now won two out of two and join Barcelona - who earlier beat Getafe 2-0 - at the league's summit, while Espanyol remain bottom and pointless after what ultimately proved an unhappy first competitive match at Cornella.

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