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Real Betis appoint Quique Setien with a three-year deal

Last Updated: 26/05/17 1:34pm

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Quique Setien is the new manager of Real Betis

Real Betis have appointed former Las Palmas boss Quique Setien as their new head coach.

Real Betis announced the deal after Setien had spent a highly successful two-year era in charge of UD Las Palmas. 

The 58-year-old Spaniard from Santander has now signed a three-year contract with the Andalusian side that sacked both Victor Sanchez del Amo and Gus Poyet last season. Setien on the other hand guided Las Palmas to 14th place during his second season with Los Amarillos. 

Setien began his managerial career at Racing Santander but made his name during a six-year spell in charge of Segunda Division side Lugo. In 2015 he took charge of Las Palmas and finished his first season with them with 11th place finish in the La Liga. 

Las Palmas started the season 16/17 brightly under Setien but eventually slumped to 14th place.

A club statement welcomed Setien to the Benito Villamarin: "Real Betis Balompie has signed Quique Setien as the new manager for the next three seasons.

"The Cantabrian joins the green and whites until June 2020.

"With the arrival of Setien, the Real Betis bet on a style of play that is close to what the Betis fans demand."

It is highly anticipated that Manolo Márquez will be the one replacing Setien as the manager of UD Las Palmas at Estadio Gran Canaria. Márquez has previously worked as the manager of UD Las Palmas reserve team, UD Las Palmas Atlético. 

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Ayestaran 'Interested' in Las Palmas job                                                                 17/06/2017

Valencia head coach Pako Ayestaran

 

Pako Ayestaran has declared his interest in landing the job of the new head coach at Estadio Gran Canaria. 

The 54-year-old Spaniard who previously managed Valencia after the sacking of Gary Neville in 2016 has decided to stir the soup by claiming his interest in landing the job. It was previously thought that Manuel Marquez Roca would be succeeding Quique Setien in this role.

At the moment the manager saga at Estadio Gran Canaria seems to be a three horse race as the former Bayern Münich midfielder Xabi Alonso earlier this week also declared interested in landing his first non-playing role. 

Last season Marquez guided Las Palmas Atletico to win the promotion to Segunda Division B in stunning fashion as the team only lost twice during the season and finished 28 points clear at the top of the table.

Ayestaran on the other hand only managed 0,83 points during his short spell with Valencia and was charge of the sleeping giants only for 12 games.

Alonso ended his career at Bayern in May 2017 and doesn't seem to be wasting time in terms of stepping up to coaching. A job in a top-flight club such as Las Palmas though may be too early for the midfield mastermind and Alonso is considered as the third favorite to land the job. 

No other candidates have yet stepped forward as Las Palmas are expected to publish their decision during inside the next two weeks. 

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LATEST | 27 JUNE 2017

Marquez snubs the promotion

Manolo Marquez has officially snubbed the proposed promotion to take over as the new head coach at UD Las Palmas. The 48-year-old Spaniard published a personal statement where he told that he was flattered with the chance but claimed that he wanted to continue his project with the Las Palmas reserve squad and to keep improving himself as a manager.

The manager saga at Estadio Gran Canaria took a surprising twist today as the public favorite for the role, Manolo Marquez officially snubbed the job offer today by making a statement in the Las Palmas official website. The 48-year-old Spaniard instead wants to concentrate improving himself as a manager with Las Palmas reserve team that he guided to a promotion season before.

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"I'm really flattered with the opportunity and job offer that the club made me but I feel that it's not my time yet. I think that I need couple of seasons more and by that I will be able to make softer landing to the top flight if the opportunity rises." 

The news of Marquez's decision will be pleasant ones for the other candidates that Las Palmas currently have. Pako Ayestaran and Xabi Alonso have already made public statements of their interest in taking over as the head coach at Estadio Gran Canaria but according to many sources there are other candidates along with them being evaluated by the club. In that very same statement the Las Palmas chairman Miguel Ángel Ramírez confirmed that there are more than just two candidates. 

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"Manolo has our full support in his task with our reserve team and while we of course are a little bit stunned with it, we do have options. There have been couple of public statements but that is not all the options that we have been presented. We are currently negotiating and looking to get this done in couple of days."

Based on that statement. We will be seeing the end of this saga in the beginning of July. 

 

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SHOCK: UD Las Palmas hire Moyes                              01/07/2017   Image result for david moyes

David Moyes has been named as the new coach of La Liga side UD Las Palmas with a 1-year deal.

UD Las Palmas have today announced their new head coach after highly popular Quique Setien left the club in May after a successful two-year era with the club.
It was highly expected that it would be either Pako Ayestaran or Manuel Marquez would land the job but it was Las Palmas who surprised everybody by appointing David Moyes.

Moyes previously enjoyed a rather unsuccessful spell with Sunderland managing to get the club relegated for the first time in ten years. Moyes resigned himself after the season and was reported to have clashed with many of the players during the season.

Before Sunderland Moyes was in charge of Real Sociedad during 2014-2015 and more famously he spent 10 years with Manchester United as as a successor of Sir Alex Ferguson. His longest and the most successful spell was though with Everton with whom he spent in total 11 years. 

Moyes will inherit a team known for its attractive, passing-based style during recent seasons. As Los Amarillos recorded the second highest possession percentage, just behind Barcelona, during the 2016/17 campaign in the La Liga with 57% possession and with third best pass accuracy. 

The news of Moyes' appointment have been received hugely mixed bag of reactions as many of the people still seem to remember what Moyes did with Everton while others remember Moyes from his more latter, rather unsuccessful spells. 

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But what the appointment of Moyes certainly will bring to Las Palmas is highly increased media attention as we will be following Moyes' era really closely. Once hailed as the Chosen One will certainly have lot to prove at Estadio Gran Canaria.

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Five join Moyes at Las Palmas                                                                Last Updated: 28/10/17 11:27pm                    

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Phil Neville and Leon Osman are part of David Moyes' coaching team at Esradio Gran Canaria

The new Las Palmas head coach David Moyes has announced his first staff movements at Estadio Gran Canaria. 

Five staff members have joined the club on this day along with Moyes who has now been charge of the club for four days. All of them are are familiar faces for Moyes during his managerial career in England.

Moyes announced as his new assistant manager a familiar man from his days in Everton as Alan Irvine rejoins Moyes as his assistant manager. Irvine was also in this role at Everton between years 2002 and 2007 before two managerial spells with Preston and Sheffield Wednesday. After which Irvine rejoined Everton and Moyes as a head of youth development in 2011. After Moyes' departure to Manchester United Irvine continued working at Everton until June 2014 when he was appointed as the manager of West Bromwich. Irvine was only charge of West Bromwich for six months before being sacked. He has then worked as an assistant manager for Blackburn and as a coach for Norwich.

Moyes has also brought in four coaches as former Everton players Leon Osman and Tony Hibbert joined the club as U-19 coaches and Phil Neville as a coach of the first team. The last and the most surprising arrival was Ryan Giggs who will join Moyes' coaching staff as a coach to the first team. This addition has been considered as an odd one as Giggs had previously declared his interest to work as a manager next and has before publicly critisized Moyes' spell at Manchester United.

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Hope Moyes has learned some more Spanish xD. Good Luck. I'm sure he will do better than his managerial performances at Man United and Real Sociedad.

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McManaman: Two way risk

BT Sports' La Liga pundit Steve McManaman has had his say about David Moyes

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The hiring of David Moyes as the new Las Palmas head coach has stirred up lots of talk about whether the decision was right or wrong. 

The former Liverpool and Real Madrid midfielder also had his opinion about Moyes.

"The appointment of Moyes seems a really strange one as Las Palmas seem to have established their position in La Liga and are slowly trying to build on that. There would more certainly have been more secure options."

"David Moyes has huge pressure on him to turn his career around as he has now had three rather unsuccessful spells in a row. And he has started this process by taking huge risks by once again jumping into a deep end. He has brought in his own staff which of whom only Phil Neville can handle the Spanish language decent enough and Moyes himself cannot speak the language. So in total he has a bit of 50-50 mix of staff who do know how to communicate with the players and who cannot. This is going to make it super difficult for him."

"With the team itself it seems super risky to do that and actually allow Moyes do that and they are most certainly taking the risk of throwing away all that they have built so far."

"The fans will be expecting the team to be attractive and attacking while Moyes is more of a defensive style of manager trying to find the result through crosses rather than passing the ball around along the floor. He simply doesn't fit into the bill here and certainly needs to update his approach if he is looking to be in charge more than six months."

"I think it's a great achievement if he can retain that 14th position but I doubt it. He just doesn't seem to have the needed attributes to manage this particular club and the final chance of the Chosen One will be a really difficult task to complete for him."

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Swansea sign Roque Mesa

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Thursday 6th of July 2017

Swansea have completed the £11million signing of Spanish central midfielder Roque Mesa on a four-year deal.

Mesa spent the previous seven seasons with UD Las Palmas and helped the club to reach the promotion to Spanish La Liga in 2015. 

Last season Mesa recorded a pass-completion rate of 91.4 per cent which was ranked as the fourth highest in La Liga.

Las Palmas, who signed Mesa from Segunda Division B club Tenerife B in 2010, paid a tribute to the player's "great professionalism and commitment" on their official website.

The Spanish club have informed that under the terms of the deal they are entitled to 15 per cent of the surplus value of any future transfer, as well as receiving a further payment from Swansea should Mesa be capped in the national team.

Las Palmas also informed that the teams have agreed to play a friendly in Gran Canaria in the next two seasons.

Mesa's arrival follows the departure of his fellow Spaniard Borja on a season-long loan to Malaga.
 

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Las Palmas loan Argentinian duo

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Jonathan Calleri and Hernan Toledo have joined UD Las Palmas with year long loan deals

Spanish La Liga side UD Las Palmas have today completed the signings of Deportivo Maldonado's Argentinian duo Jonathan Calleri and Hernan Toledo with both successfully completing the medical at the Gran Canarian club.

23-year-old Calleri spent last season on loan at West Ham United but only managed to find the net once in 17 appearance for the London club. Meanwhile Toledo who is 21 years old was most recently on loan at Argentine side Lanus.

Los Amarillos are also set to complete a deal which will see Vitolo join the club until January, when he will join Atletico Madrid on a permanent basis from Sevilla.

Vitolo is a product of Las Palmas' own youth academy who spent the first years of his professional career with the club until in 2013 he joined Sevilla for a four year successful spell that saw him winning the Europa league three times. Due to Atletico Madrid's transfer ban Vitolo won't be able to represent the club before January 2018.

Moyes not charge of the transfers

It has also been announced by UD Las Palmas that the new head coach David Moyes will not be taking part of the team's transfers during the summer transfer window as he wants to put all his effort on his work at the training ground and in the school bench where he along with his coaching staff Ryan Giggs, Alan Irvine, Leon Osman and Tony Hibbert are taking part of the intensive Spanish training courses. 

The club has not yet confirmed if this unusual decision is only for summer 2017 or is Moyes going to be sitting out of this part for longer time. The latest transfer gossip involve the Las Palmas striker duo Sergio Araujo and Marko Livaja who have been said to be wanted by Greece side AEK Athens. It is believed  AEK are going to try and sign the duo for season long loan contracts to bolster up their striker department. Araujo already was with AEK last season before returning to Las Palmas at the end of June. 

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Sergio Araujo and Marko Livaja join AEK Athens

UD Las Palmas and AEK have reached agreements for two season long loan deals 

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We are today announcing that our striking duo Marko Livaja and Sergio Araujo have joined Greek side AEK Athens for season long loan deals

Sergio Araujo will re-join the Greek side which he represented last season for 22 games and scored impressive 9 goals including the one that eventually clinched the Greece Super league title for the club. 

Livaja on the other hand struggled last season ending up with just five goals in 21 games and after the arrival of Jonathan Calleri the club will see as the best option to give Livaja a proper chance in the first team with the Greek side.

The initial loan fee with Marko Livaja will be €200k along with all of his salary paid by the Greek club while with Sergio Araujo we will receive €700k along with the wages paid by the Greek club. The Greek club have €1.8M purchase option on Livaja. 

 

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Joleon Lescott training with Las Palmas

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Lescott won the Premier League with City in 2012 and has 26 caps for England after spending more than 10 years playing in the English top flight

The former Manchester City, Everton and Sunderland centre back has rejoined with David Moyes at Gran Canaria. The experienced defender with 26 caps is currently a free agent after leaving Sunderland along with Moyes after their disastrous season which saw Sunderland relegated from the top flight. 

Moyes and Lescott share a long history together first in Everton for many years and after that reuniting at Sunderland. The trial-period of the soon 35-year-old defender has been told to last for four weeks which mostly covers the full length of the pre-season training that the teams in Spain have. 

Lescott enjoyed best parts of his career with Everton (2006-09) and Manchester City (2009-14) and was a regular in the English national team during years 2007-2013. After those years Lescott represented both West Bromwich Albion and Aston Villa before having two brief spells at AEK Athens and with Sunderland last season. 

It is highly speculated that Moyes wants Lescott to be part of his backroom staff along with the experienced Englishman being ready to step on the pitch if needed. 

 

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Boateng leaves for personal reasons

Kevin-Prince Boateng Las Palmas

Kevin-Prince Boateng joined Las Palmas last summer after being released by Serie A outfit AC Milan.

Las Palmas have released Kevin-Prince Boateng after reaching an agreement to terminate his contract following the player's request to leave the La Liga club due to "irreversible personal reasons."

The announcement comes just two months after the 30-year-old midfielder had signed a new three-year contract extension with the club.

German tabloid Bild have already reported that Eintracht Frankfurt are looking to sign Boateng who has already represtented Hertha Berlin, Borussia Dortmund and Schalke-04 in the Bundersliga. 

Boateng signed a one-year contract with Las Palmas last summer after being released by AC Milan.

He arrived in Spain eager to turn his career around after making just one league start during his second spell with Milan, whom he joined in January 2016 from Bundesliga side Schalke.

He duly delivered as Boateng was Las Palmas' main goalscorer last season with 10 goals in 28 La Liga matches of which 25 where starts. 

The former Ghana international told after signing of the new contract until June 2020 with Las Palmas that he had turned down several offers this summer to remain at the club, where he was "very happy."

The club president Miguel Angel Ramirez thanked Boateng  for turning down lucrative offers from other European clubs that could have allowed the player move closer to Milan, where his wife and child live. However Boateng has now reconsidered that decision.

The club has stated that: "The player's personal situation has precipitated his departure. Boateng will continue his sporting career in a place that will allow him to be closer to his family."

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Love your presentation there, really enjoying reading this. Keep up the good work mate :thup:

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Pre-season schelude announced

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We are today announcing our plans for the coming pre-season which will include six pre-season friendlies and a ten day training camp in Belgium.

We will begin our pre-season on 10th of July when the players will be returning from their well deserved holiday. The first friendly match will be on 16th of July at home against Bournemouth, on 23rd of July we will play against SM Caen at home, on 27th of July we will play against Sunderland at home and on 30th of July we will finish our home game tour against Red Bull Leiptzig.

The team will then travel to Belgium on 1st of August to have a 10 day training camp. In Belgium we will face Deportivo de La Coruña at Sportpark de Toekomst on 6th of August. Our final pre-season friendly match will be played once again at home against Greek side Panathinaikos on 13th of August. 

We will begin our La Liga season on 19th of July with a home game against Villarreal and week later we travel to face Girona. 

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Las Palmas snap up Aquilani and Samper

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La Liga outfit UD Las Palmas have today announced two new signings to their midfield as former AS Roma and AC Milan man Alberto Aquilani has joined the club for free transfer while Barcelona youngster Sergi Samper will join the club for a season long loan. 

The experienced and highly respected Italian who left Pescara in the end of June has signed a two-year deal with the Gran Canarian Club. Samper on the other hand agreed a one year loan deal without a possible transfer fee.

Aquilani had struggled his form after leaving Fiorentina two years ago but had a really promising loan spell with Sassuolo last season before leaving his host club Pescara after his contract expired. 

The attacking midfielder had made a name for himself at AS Roma, and also enjoyed spells with Liverpool, Juventus, AC Milan, Fiorentina, Sporting CP, Pescara and Sassuolo.

Aquilani managed 5 goals in 38 appearances for the Italy national team, playing at the 2013 Confederations Cup and 2014 World Cup.

Samper, 22, spent last season on loan at Granada and returned to the Barcelona side this summer looking to secure first team football with the giants but the newly appointed manager Ernesto Valverde didn't see a spot for Samper in his first team squad and after having a chat with the played decided that it is better for Samper to have at least one year off from Barcelona while enjoying first team action. 

Samper's last season was disastrous as the young midfielder only started 13 matches in La Liga under three different managers as the club eventually saw themselves relegated from the Spanish top flight. 

The newly signed duo is said to be direct replacement for Kevin Prince Boateng and Roque Mesa whom the club has lost during the beginning of the summer transfer window.

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Thank you for the comments so far. This beginning might seem a bit boring but I will try to get some games played maybe during the weekend or next week.

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Las Palmas show promise in mixed bag of pre-season results

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UD Las Palmas along with other Spanish La Liga sides has today completed their run of friendlies during the pre-season by drawing 1-1 against Greek side Panathinaikos at Estadio de Gran Canaria. In total the Gran Canarian side completed six pre-season friendlies with mixed bag of results but also showing a lot of what they are capable of.

Las Palmas begun their pre-season with a 0-2 defeat in their home soil with a performance that was described shocking one. It was Jerman Defoe running the show with goals in 15th and 24th minute. 
The team bounced back with a 1-0 win week later against SM Caen with the goal coming from Vicente on 76th minute. Las Palmas then faced Moyes' former side Sunderland at home beating them 2-1 with early goals from new signings Jonathan Calleri and Vitolo. Just three days later Las Palmas were two goals ahead of German side Leipzig but collapsed during the second half slumping into a 2-4 defeat. The goals were scored by Calleri and Ximo Navarro. 

After the four game pre-season at home the team traveled to Belgium for ten days facing Deportivo de La Coruña on 6th of August. Las Palmas were stronger in this affair with 1-0 victory and goal scored by Vitolo. The team ended its' preseason at home with 1-1 draw against Panathinaikos and Jonathan Calleri scoring his third pre-season goal.

During the pre-season Las Palmas stayed decently well out of injury troubles with only Leandro Chirichola, Vicente and Aythami facing injuries and all of them now missing the season start against Villarreal at home on 19th of August. 

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Vitolo had a good pre-season

How did they line up?

David Moyes lined up his team to all familiar 4-2-3-1 formation which was basing strongly on defensive side of the game which worked really well excluding the two odd games where Bournemouth and Leipzig scoring 2 and 4 goals against them. The team seemed to improve the longer the pre-season went and perhaps should won more comfortably against Deportivo and definitely should have won against Panathinaikos. 
The new manager David Moyes was satisfied with his teams' performances after the last game:

"Yeah I feel that we have had a decent start here. The team is showing a lot of promise and we're at times defending really well and after a couple more games we can actually see what we might be capable of doing in attack."

Moyes seemed willing to follow the board's and fans' expectations to entertain by instructing his team to play with short passing and recording close to 60% ball possession during most of the pre-season. Moyes himself though was not completely agreeing on this note:

"My job here is to win the games and we are doing that in the best way suitable for the team. We're not going to be relying on just one trick but always trying to be hard to play against."

During the pre-season the new boys Vitolo and Jonathan Calleri were the two best players for the team while Moyes needs to find a better way to get the best out of important players like Jonathan Viera and Alen Halilovic. 
In midfield Sergi Samper seems to be the first name in Moyes' team sheet which will most definitely please Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde. Hernan and Javi Castellano are the ones battling for the place next to Samper while Alberto Aquailani still has lot to do in terms of fitness to claim his place in the first team. 
In defense Michel will most likely be the one featuring on right hand side and Mauricio Lemos will be the first name when centre backs are considered. Another centre back Pedro Bigas might be starting as a left back as Moyes might give the club captain David García a run in the first team and Dani Castellano apparently not convincing Moyes with his defensive frailties. 
According to Moyes the team is still searching more fire power up front:

"We all know I'm not the one responsible of that (transfers) this window but we are looking for a solution up front as we are missing both Livaja and Araujo this season. Jonathan Calleri had a great pre-season but we cannot rely one man to be fit throughout the long season. We still have couple of weeks time to sort this out."

Joleon Lescott, the man on trial, did not feature during the pre-season and Moyes didn't want to comment about his future:

"I don't have anything to say. Joleon has been working hard during the pre-season and he is in a good shape. We will have to see what lies ahead in his future. Might be Las Palmas, might be something in England or somewhere else. He's still quality player and a proper professional."

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Spanish La Liga season preview | part 1

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Real Madrid

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The first full season under Zinedine Zidane continued Real Madrid's winning ways as the team celebrated both Spanish La Liga and UEFA Champions league trophies. The success seems to be continuying as the Madrid side already won both Super Cups before the Spanish La Liga campaign has started.
Real Madrid have to be the favorites in this season too both in Spain and in Europe.

Follow him: Marco Asensio - With Gareth Bale's injury troubles there needs to be someone who can step up to the shoes of the Welsh magician. Asensio showed glipmses of that class already last season and might well be a long terms replacement for the superstars like Ronaldo and Bale.

Barcelona

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A lot has changed for the Copa del Rey winners as both Neymar and Luis Enrique are gone from the club. The all important duo has been replaced by Ousmane Dembélé and Ernesto Valverde who made their name in Dortmund and Athletic Bilbao. 
Barcelona basically gave away the title last season in the first half of the season but mounted a serious comeback in the final hundred meters of the season only allowing Real Madrid to glinch the title in the final round of the La Liga. While the season wasn't the most successful one Barcelona did lift the Copa del Rey trophy by beating Alaves.

Follow him: Ousmane Dembélé - The 20-year-old has huge shoes to fill in as he will be joining Lionel Messi and Luis Suaréz in an attempt to create a new trio to cause horror in defenses both in Spain and in Europe. Dembélé netted eight times in total last season for Dortmund which means that stepping up to Neymar's shoes will be huge task for him.

Atletico Madrid

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If someone else it's going to be Atletico like always. Atletico have come to stay at the very top of both Spanish and European football under the helm of Diego Simeone and they are once again the ones who might be able to flirt with the La Liga trophy. When at their best they can absolutely beat both Barcelona and Real Madrid no matter where the game is played.
What is different from Barcelona and Real Madrid when you talk about Atletico is the fact that the team relies heavily on their mean defending and that is usually their downfall in long run as the team is always more likely to drop points against smaller opponents. Also Atletico are not a team making huge amount of big money signings and once again this season the team will do their utmost to keep hold of their star players Antoine Griezmann and Yannick Ferreira-Carrasco.

Follow him: Ángel Correa - The 22-year-old Argentinian might be finally up to it to play the second violin for Atletico this season as Kevin Gameiro struggled last season. Behind world class Antoine Griezmann Atletico have a long list of really good attackers all willing to play alongside Griezmann as the other striker. We think that this season Ángel Correa will take this place. At least until Diego Costa is back in January.

Sevilla

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After two years of building Sevilla Jorge Sampaoli decided to step back to international management with Argentina and was replaced by former Celta Vigo man Eduardo Berizzo. The shoes are big to fill as Sevilla have set a tradition both in Spain and Europe and will be one of the favorites to nail the final Champions league place like they did last season. 
Sevilla have brought in many new old faces well known in the club from previous years but have also lost lot of talent especially with loans expiring. 

Follow him: Luis Muriel - A new arrival from Sampdoria who set his career best with Italian club by scoring 11 goals along with five assists. This convinced Sevilla to smash their transfer record with €20M for the striker. Muriel will be looking to lead the newly formed Sevilla attack along with the return of Éver Banega, as well as the additions of Nolito and Jesús Navas from Manchester City.

Valencia

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A 12th place finish last season was not what Valencia fans were expecting from the season. It started all wrong under Pako Ayestáran and four consecutive defeats were enough for him. The interim manager Voro stepped up to guide Valencia all the way to the mid-table. Marcelino now takes over the permanent role with many of the club’s core players from last year heading elsewhere so he’ll have to find ways to implement his system quickly with a squad that needs a lot of gelling up as well.

Follow him: Goncalo Guedes - Dubbed as the new Cristiano Ronaldo along with many others the Portugalian made a big money move to PSG last season only to feature in seven Ligue 1 matches. The talented 20-year-old is now on loan at Valencia and both the club and the player are willing to show some of that promise. Guedes will take over as a replacement of Nani who is only loan at Lazio. 

Athletic Bilbao

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Long time manager Ernesto Valverde is gone and was replaced by José Ángel (Cuco) Ziganda. Ziganda is in all familiar situation as the club once again has managed to keep hold of the core of its key players. 
Athletic Bilbao have created a clear tradition of keeping their place well in top half of the Spanish La Liga and constantly featuring in the Europa League. Taking the next step forward is not in sight as the club is not investing in new players.

Follow him: Aritz Aduriz - Forever young Aduriz never seems to slow down and is still keeping his place as the main man in Athletic attack. The 36-year-old striker only made his international debut in 2016 but seems to get better the older he gets. Last season he helped the club by netting 16 goals in 35 games. 

Villarreal

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Villarreal conceded the second least goals last season in La Liga only allowing 33 in La Liga. A lot of that was thank to long time server Mateo Musacchio who has finally left the club after all the speculation in recent years as the Argentinian joined AC Milan with €18M. The manager Fran Escribá has also spent a lot of money to replace him by bringing in guys like Rúben Semedo to plug the hole and Carlos Bacca, Pablo Fornals and Enes Ünal to bolder the attack. Villarreal have finished in top six of the La Liga in all the four seasons after returning to the Spanish La Liga in 13/14 season and they will most definitely be looking to retain that position. The competition for these places in the top half and Europa League though is tough.

Follow him: Carlos Bacca - The 30-year-old striker has moved to Villarreal from AC Milan with one year loan deal and Villarreal have the option to sign him for €2.5M after the season. Bacca has a successful history in the La Liga as he netted 34 league goals with Sevilla in two seasons in 2011-13. If that form is regained, Villarreal will most definitely fight seriously for the place in Europe.

Real Sociedad

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Real Sociedad are back in Europe after sixth place finish last season but they are having to cope with an important departure as left-back Yuri joined PSG this summer with €16M deal. The manager Eusebio Sacristán countered that by spending €14.5M to sign both Diego Llorente (Real Madrid) to shore up the backline and Adnan Januzaj (Manchester United) to provide a spark to the offense.
Real Sociedad are doing a really good business at the moment along with their worst rivals Athletic Bilbao and they most definitely want to have their hide in the La Liga.

Follow him: Adnan Januzaj - The Manchester United flop Januzaj was brought in to bring some spark to Sociedad attack and surely has to deliver now especially as Carlos Vela will move to MLS in January. The 22-year-old has promise in him but has only showed some glimpses of realizing that potential.

Celta de Vigo

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After three years at Celta Eduardo Berrizzo is now gone to Sevilla. The new manager is now Juan Carlos Unzué. Celta finished 13th last season but will be one of those teams looking to improve their fortunes this season as the previous season saw Celta dropping seven positions from the previous one. Celta will have to improve their away record which last season only saw them gaining four wins on the road. 

Follow him: Iago Aspas - Aspas keep improving as he recorded his personal best with 19 goals in La Liga which saw him claiming the throne of the best Spanish goalscorer in the league. As a 30-year-old Aspas is playing the prime years of his career and could even sement a place in the Spanish national team with another solid season.

Espanyol

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The bitter rivals of Barcelona had a great campaign in 2016/17 as Quique Sanchez Florez invested heavily in the squad and saw them finishing 8th in La Liga. Not lot has changed this summer and Sanchez Florez will most definitely be looking to build the momentum they created last season.

Follow him: Pablo Piatti - The little Argentinian signed permanently this summer from Valencia and for a reason as he recorded 10 assists last season in La Liga. Once dubbed as the new Lionel Messi, Piatti hasn't quite lived up to those expectations but has now found his home in Barcelona's bitter rivals and has already formed a good partnership with Gerard Moreno who netted 13 times last season. 

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Spanish La Liga season preview | part 2

Deportivo de La Coruña 

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Deportivo had a solid start to last season but eventually slumped all the way down to 16th place winning only one game away from home. 
The club got back all important Lucas Perez from Arsenal and have invested otherwise vicely by adding for example Zakaria Bakkali from Valencia. Pedro Mosquera and Celso Borges form a formidable midfield duo that have the experience and quality that match most of the teams in La Liga.

Follow him: Lucas Perez - The Arsenal flop re-signed with Deportivo for whom he scored 17 league goals in season 15/16. Lucas is all important improvement for the team and has the potential to reach 20 goals during the starting season which lifts Deportivo's chances a lot. 

Málaga

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Málaga were 11th last season in La Liga and for many teams this would mean stability. Málaga head coach Michel though is scratching his head currently as he had much busier summer than he maybe would have liked to have. Due to some key departures from the club Michel has had to build many areas all over again.
It will be interesting to see if and how quickly the team can pull together after busy summer. And if not Málaga may have to even battle even against the relegation.

Follow him: Roberto Rosales - The Venezuelan has been almost ever-present for Málaga for three seasons already. The complete wingback is good both at defending and going forward and has the ability to offer Borja Baston the delivery that the Swansea-loanee requires to score.

Real Betis

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Quique Setien received a clean bill of money with the departure of Dani Ceballos who moved to Real Madrid and he wasn't the only one departing. This allowed Betis to improve their finances while the club refused to spend all the money on new players. Setién will have good pieces like Victor Camarasa and Guardado to create a solid midfield while newcomers Cristian Tello and Sergio León can be counted on to provide some goals.

Follow him: Christian Tello - Scored seven goals in 22 games for Barcelona during the 2012/13 campaign but could never really build on that in Catalonia. After the weaker 13/14 campaign Tello has been on the move and having one really good season with Porto but once again failed to build on that. For the last two seasons Tello was with Fiorentina playing a lot but providing frustratingly little. Now Tello is back in Spain, permanently out of Barcelona and very much capable of scoring more than 10 goals in La Liga. 

UD Las Palmas

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Summer of changes for Las Palmas as the club lost couple of key players and their manager Quique Setién. After a strong start last season the team slumped to 14th place which was three places worse than on previous season. 
The new manager David Moyes will face many problems here as he has to manage the team in a different way than he is used to and in different culture. Losing Roque Mesa and Kevin-Prince Boateng is a huge blow for Las Palmas' campaign. 

Follow him: Vitolo - The Las Palmas' own boy is back for half a season and the Spanish international is undoubtedly the best player of the team and a fan favorite. Can form a really great partnership able to entertain with Jonathan Viera and Alen Halilovic.

SD Eibar

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Eibar last season were the only team outside top 7 having a positive goal difference. The team surprised many by a positive attacking style of football which they cherished especially at home seeing the team winning 10 of their 18 home games. 
The defense will suffer this season with the loss of Florian Lejeune to Newcastle but the club also spent a lot of money bringing in some new faces to replace him.
If Eibar can keep up their strong home record. They will be safe this season for sure.

Follow him: Pedro León - The freekick specialist scored ten goals for Eibar last season which was his best ever. It was looking for some time that León was past his peak but after leaving Eibar whom he had represented ever since 09/10 (exc. one season with Real Madrid) the right winger got his career back on right tracks. The mobility is not what it once used to be but León has a real golden boot when it comes to delivering the ball.

Deportivo Alavés

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Deportivo Alavés were really close to a huge surprise as the team reched the final of Copa del Rey last season as well as finishing top ten in La Liga. 
The popular and successful manager Mauricio Pellegrini has now moved to England and Southampton which will certainly leave Alavés suffering. New boss Giovanni De Biasi has plenty obstacles to cross if he wants to help this club stay afloat the relegation zone.

Follow him: Bojan - The wonderkid's career never really kicked off and while he was performing quite well at Stoke, Bojan is once again in all familiar situation: with a new club looking to fulfill all that promise. At Alavés he will unite with another player that hasn't really made it with Barcelona, Munir.
This duo can form a formitable partnership in the attack and play in a really attractive style of football. 

Levante

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Levante were relegated from La Liga for the first time since 09/10 after season 15/16 but immediately bounced back to the top flight. They did this with style as they were 14 points clear at top of the table. Staying up is always going to be a struggle but what is good for Juan Muñiz is the fact that he could keep his important puzzly of players together and can build on that. 
Levante have all the chances to stay up.

Follow him: José Morales - 7 goals in their previous La Liga campaign from left wing but only 4 in Segunda. Morales needs to be the one that can improve his game if the club wants to stay up. Has all the attributes needed to score regularly in this level.

Getafe

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Another team up for this season that is all familiar for La Liga fans. Jose Bordalas, the man who promoted Deportivo Alavés and got sacked will now get his first chance to manage in La Liga with Getafe and is facing a tough mission here. Getafe have invested a lot during the summer by signing in total 10 new players. 
Gelling up will be a key for Getafe as they will fight bravely to keep up instead of returning to Segunda. 

Follow him: Unai Nuñez - The super talented Nuñez is surprisingly on loan this season. Nuñez is a superb addition for Getafe's defensive line and will be hoping to hop into the level that is required at Athletic Bilbao. 

CD Leganés

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Leganés were up for the first time in their history last season and barely escaped with their feet dry by finishing 17th in La Liga. 
To repeat the feat will be a challenge for fifth-year manager Asier Garitano, who lost center back Pablo Ínsua and forward Luciano following the end of their loan spells. Leganés will rely heavily in their defensive shape and providing goals from the flanks. 

Follow him: Nordin Amrabat - The skillful winger from Morocco hasn't quite lived to the expectations that he once set in Holland. After two seasons without goals with Watford Amrabat is back in La Liga and having a really large role down left hand side. Leganés will be relying a lot on their wide play during the season and Amrabat really needs to deliver this season to keep the team up. 

Girona

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The third team to be promoted to La Liga is a little bit of an odd bird. Manchester City have adopted the club as their feeder club and will provide they help with lot of young players. Generally you cannot win anything with kids that aren't exceptionally talented and this will apply to Girona too. 
Girona have the youngest squad in La Liga and while they have lot of interesting players, we doubt that they can keep up this season.

Follow him: Gorka Iraizoz - After 10 seasons with Athletic Bilbao it was finally time for Gorka Iraizoz to make way for the talented Kepa as the main man in Athletic. Gorka though didn't step off as a starter as he will claim this place with Girona. The 36-year-old keeper is still up to La Liga standards and will provide vital experience to the young Girona side. He needs an excellent season though to keep the team up.

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Interesting signings in Aquilani and Samper there. Their careers have stalled a little and hopefully they can revive them at Las Palmas!

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PREVIEW: UD LAS PALMAS VS. VILLARREAL

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La Liga returns to action this weekend. In Gran Canaria we are witnessing an interesting clash as UD Las Palmas are facing Villarreal for the first fixture of the season.

Villarreal finished last season in impressive fifth position while Las Palmas finished fourteenth after an impressive start to the season.
Both teams have new managers in charge as 39-year-old Javi Calleja took over at Estadio de La Cerámica in the beginning of July while David Moyes tooks charge at Estadio de Gran Canaria just days later.

Villarreal will go to this game as slight favorites based on the quality of the players. Though Las Palmas did beat them last time they met at Gran Canaria 1-0.
Villarreal decided not to play a single friendly game during the pre-season while Las Palmas completed in total 6 games of which they won three, drew one and lost two.
Villarreal go to this game with clean bill of health while Las Palmas are missing Chichizola, Vicente and Aythami.

Villarreal (probable): Barbosa; Mario, Alvaro, Victor Ruiz, Jaume; Castillejo, Rodri, Fornals, Trigueros; Bacca, Bakambu

Injuries/suspensions: -

Las Palmas (probable): Lizoain; Michel, Lemos, Bigas, Dani Castellano; Samper, Javi Castellano, Viera, Vitolo, Halilovic; Calleri

Injuries/suspensions: Chichizola, Vicente, Aythami

___________________________________________________________

@DavidBeckham thank you. Both will get their chance as my playmakers. 

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Las Palmas 1 - 0 Villarreal: Ten men Las Palmas hit Villarreal with 'textbook counter attack'

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By Will Jackson
Last Updated: 19/8/2017 

UD Las Palmas opened the season with a tight 1-0 victory against Villarreal at their home soil.

La Liga kicked of this Saturday with two games as UD Las Palmas hosted Villarreal and at the same time Sevilla were hosting last season's league runner-ups Barcelona.

19,745 people witnessed UD Las Palmas coming narrowly on top against Villarreal as Sergi Samper scored the only goal of the game in 69th minute.

The game was tightly contested and both teams kept each other out of good scoring chances for majority of the game. Las Palmas were controlling about 60% of the ball with their man advantage in the midfield. Things got tougher for the hosts in the beginning of the second half as Pedro Bigas fouled Carlos Bacca to see his second yellow card. 

The hosts didn't fold and they eventually hit Villarreal with a beatiful counter that was started by Jonathan Viera who released striker Jonathan Calleri through the left flank, Calleri made a strong driving run to the byline and found Vitolo from the second wave who pulled the ball back to Sergi Samper who struck the ball home from ten meters out. 

Villarreal never managed to threaten UD Las Palmas and only managed two shots towards the hosts' goal while Las Palmas summed 6 shots on target out of their 12 in total.  Las Palmas boss David Moyes was happy about the performance and for a good reason:

"We witnessed two good sides lashing out today and we deservedly came on top of this. It was a textbook performance on the goal and maybe we should have had one or two more."

"I won't get ahead of myself because of this, we concentrate to the next game and try to do as well as we can there. I never think much further than that."

Las Palmas will travel to Girona next week to take on the newly promoted side while Villarreal will host Eibar already on Friday. 

In Sevilla the hosts beat Barcelona 2-1 with two early goals from Jesus Navas. 

Las Palmas (4-2-3-1): Lizoaín; Michel, Bigas (so: 54th min), Lemos, D.Castellano; Samper, Hernán (sub: J.Castellano); Halilovic, Viera, Vitolo; Calleri
Subs: Navarro, J. Castellano, Toledo

Villarreal (4-4-2): Asenjo; Mario, Semedo, Álvaro, Costa; Castillejo, Triguero, Bruno, Cheryshev; Bacca, Bakambu
Subs: Fornais, Sansone 

Man of the match: Jonathan Viera

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Jornada 1: Giants tumble as Girona top the table 

The first round of La Liga provided some shocks as both Barcelona and Real Madrid dropped points in round one while Atletico Madrid escaped with a narrow victory against Deportivo de La Coruña. The first round of La Liga was day to remember for Girona who, by beating Málaga away from home, top the table along with Espanyol after round one. 

Sevilla's strong start was too much for Barcelona and Pique's goal didn't help them enough to climb even level in first round. Real Madrid also struggled to a 1-1 draw against Eibar away from home and had to rely on Isco's late equalizer to gain a point. Atlético Madrid were in trouble at home against Deportivo and only saw the game through with two rather late goals from Kevin Gameiro and Luciano Vietto. 

See all the round one results and team of the week below.

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PREVIEW: Las Palmas travel to league leaders Girona in round

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La Liga continues with a full round of fixtures. Newly promoted Girona host Las Palmas on Saturday. 

Both teams come to this game with full three points in their account as Las Palmas beat Villarreal 1-0 at their home soil while Girona beat Málaga away from home 2-0 with goals from Pablo Mafeo and Christian Stuani. 

We are expecting a tight draw here but are expecting lot of goals as both teams are capable and willing to entertain the audience with quick attacks. Las Palmas go to the game with more defensively solid 4-2-3-1 outlook that the new manager David Moyes has been using ever since the beginning of the pre-season while Girona are used of using adventurous 3-4-3 under popular manager Pablo Máchin.

Las Palmas go to this game as slight favorites as Moyes' side will be having lot of chances to break forward against the adventurous hosts. Las Palmas are still missing Leandro Chichizola out injured and he was joined earlier this week by Dani Castellano with 2-3 months shin splints injury, Pedro Bigas will be suspended for this game while Vicente is all fit to play again. Girona have clean bill of healt excluding Marc Muniesa who is out with pulled hamstring. 

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Las Palmas beat Girona in style and climb on top of the table

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Early goals secured victory for visitos, UD Las Palmas against Girona in a clash that entertained people and took Las Palmas top of the table.

David Moyes opted more experienced Vicente in front of Alen Halilovic as the 29-year-old midfielder returned back from injury that had forced him to miss most of the pre-season. Ximo Navarro took Dani Castellano's place down the left flank and experienced David García partnered Mauricio Lemos a centre back. 

Vicente thanked Moyes for his trust by scoring the first goal just after two minutes had been played. Jonathan Viera played key part to this goal as the winger cut inside from left to pull the ball back to Vicente who scored with his first shot of the season. Vicente was close to make it two out of two by heading the ball to post just five minutes later. Las Palmas were two nil up after 20 minutes as Vitolo set Sergi Samper to an easy shooting chance from right hand side after a throw in.

Girona took control of the game during the second half but failed to threaten Raul Lízoain's goal. On 51st minute though the audience witnessed a piece of magic as Girona won the ball high up the pitch and Manchester City loanee Marlos Moreno smashed the ball into the net from 25 yards out. Moyes' side seemed in trouble after that as Girona got closer and closer to equalize. It was Las Palmas though who scored the final goal of the game as Michel released Jonathan Calleri through on goal on 82nd minute as the hosts were taking risks on chasing the equalizer.

Final score Girona 1 and Las Palmas 3. Las Palmas boss David Moyes was particularly happy with his team's first half and the striker Jonathan Calleri:

"I think that the first half showed everybody what we are capable of. We could have been three or four goals up at half time. We did fold a bit during the second half but before the rather spectacular goal they never looked to get back to this game."

"I think he (Jonathan Calleri) was the best player on the pitch today. He brought others to the play by linking up well throughout the game and deserved his goal."

Girona FC (3-4-3): Iraizoz; Ramalho, Bernardo, Juanpe; Maffeo, Planas; Douglas Luiz, Timor; Borja Garcia; Moreno, Stuani
Subs: Portu, Kayode, Mojica

Goals: Marlos Moreno 51'

Las Palmas (4-2-3-1): Lizoaín; Michel, David García, Lemos, Navarro; Castellano, Samper; Vitolo, Vicente, Viera; Calleri
Subs: David Símon, Halilovic, Tana

Goals: Vicente 3' Samper 22' Calleri 82' 

Man of the Match: Marlos Moreno

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Jornada 2: Giants back on track - Atlético and Las Palmas top La Liga table

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Barcelona and Real madrid dropped points in the first round of La Liga but bounced back during the second round with clean sheets and seven goals scored in total. Barcelona beat Levante at Camp Nou 4-0 Lionel Messi scored twice and aided Luis Suaréz's hat trick cause by two assists. Real Madrid dominated Real Betis at Santiago Bernabeu in  a three nil victory with goals from Asensio, Benzema and Cristiano Ronaldo. The reigning champions seem now readier in terms of next week's big derby match against Atlético Madrid.

Atlético Madrid and UD Las Palmas top the La Liga table after two rounds as the two only teams that have managed to get full six points of six available. Atlético beat Real Sociedad away from home in a thrilling encounter by 3 goals to 2. Adnan Januzaj and Antoine Griezmann both scored a brace while Koke scored the first goal for Atlético. UD Las Palmas on the other hand beat Girona away from home 3-1 with goals from Vicente, Sergi Samper and Jonathan Calleri. 

The biggest shock of the round probably was Villarreal's home loss against SD Eibar which sees Submarino Amarillo having zero points from their first two matches. Goals from Carlos Bacca and Cedric Bakambu were not enough for them as Charles scored once and David Lomban twice from penalty spot for the visitors. 

Next week provides once again some thrilling matches such as the Madrid Derby, Barcelona hosting Athletic Bilbao at Camp Nou and league leaders Las Palmas facing Valencia at Estadio de Gran Canaria. The team of the week for La Liga round two looked like this. Full list of results can be found below.

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Las Palmas sign two in deadline day

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Spanish league leaders UD Las Palmas have announced two signings during the final day of the transfer window as they have brought in Loïc Remy from Chelsea and Oussama Tannane on loan from Saint Etienne.

Injury-plagued Remy has signed two year deal with Las Palmas after he was released from Chelsea on Friday. Remy and Chelsea mutually terminated the French striker's contract and Las Palmas moved quickly to sign the experienced 30-year-old Frenchman. Remy started his Chelsea-career brightly in season 2014/15 by scoring 7 goals for the Blues in 19 games which only six were starts. He has suffered from lots of injuries after that which saw him unable to revive his career last season with Crystal Palace as he failed to establish himself with Chelsea.

The Morocco international Oussama Tannane signed a year-long loan deal with the club. Tannane joined Saint Etienne year before from Heracles and played 29 times for them last season scoring three goals. Tannane is able to play any position throughout attack but is strongest down the flanks. Tannane is tenth new signing for Las Palmas this season.

Both new signings are available for the next game as Las Palmas will host Valencia on 9th of September.

 

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Unbelievable start mate! Remy is another good signing and hopefully he will be able to resurrect his career at Las Palmas! \o/

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PREVIEW: Las Palmas take on Valencia

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Las Palmas will host Valencia for La Liga round three fixture at Estadio de Gran Canaria. Las Palmas will go to this fixture as league leaders while Valencia currently sit in 12th position after one win and one loss. 

Las Palmas will have to go to this fixture without Dani Castellano who is still injured while Leandro Chichizola will be likely making his return to the team after he has recovered from his broken hand. Pedro Bigas will return to the defense after his one game ban.

Valencia will have Gabriel Paulista missing through sprained knee ligaments while Geoffrey Kondogbia is suffering from a concussion and is doubtful. Robert and Nacho Gil cannot be selected to the team either. New names Loïc Remy and Oussama Tannane are looking to make their debut from the bench while Alberto Aquilani might get his first start with the team. 

Valencia will go to the game as slight favorites despite Las Palmas' strong start to the season. The difference in terms of quality of players is evident and this should turn this tightly contested game to Valencia's favor. Las Palmas did beat Valencia at Gran Canaria last season but this time around this task might be too big to handle.

Las Palmas (4-2-3-1): Chichizola; Michel, Lemos, Bigas, Navarro; Aquilani, Samper, Viera, Vicente, Vitolo; Calleri

Valencia (4-4-2): Domenech; Montoya, Murillo, Garay, Gaya; Pereira, Parejo, Soler, Guedes; Zaza, Rodrigo

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@DavidBeckham Thank you again, mate. Glad that someone is following this. :) 

 

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Zaza stuns Las Palmas as Valencia move top of the table briefly

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A brace from Simone Zaza was enough to secure 3-1 victory for Valencia as the Mestallan side move on top of La Liga briefly.

Las Palmas had enjoyed a strong start to the season but it all came to end as Valencia deservedly put them into place as Las Palmas failed to make their man advantage count in the midfield.

There were early signs of things happening as Las Palmas debutee Alberto Aquilani lost the ball high up the pitch to see Dani Parejo fed by a long ball just for Leandro Chichizola to deny the striker. Valencia didn't fold out out though and they were ahead in 19th minute as Simone Zaza turned in front of Pedro Bigas at 20 yards out and smashed the ball past Chichizola. Las Palmas slowly got into the game but were stunned on 36th minute with a similar goal from Zaza. Jonathan Calleri then got Las Palmas back into the game by scoring from layout from Vitolo in 43rd minute.

Valencia kept Las Palmas at the bay for most of the second half and even the new man Loïc Remy who came in from bench failed to set the hosts' performance on fire. The game was nailed on 92nd minute by Goncalo Guedes who headed in Dani Parejo's free kick from the near post. 

Las Palmas boss David Moyes was understandably unhappy with the performance but also raised "luck" as one of the factors of the result.

"Well of course the honeymoon with us now over and we have been set to our place with this result. But the fact is that we have now conceded three similar goals that weren't even scoring chances."

Moyes also give a critique to couple of his players.

"I think Leandro wasn't ready yet and Alberto failed to make the impact we wanted with him. There was also some really questionable marking in those two first goals. We need to find a way to make this area of our defensive play more tight."

Valencia took the pole position of La Liga just briefly as Atlético Madrid beat local rivals Real Madrid later this evening by two goals to nil. 

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Jornada 3: Atlético climb top of the table

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League leaders Las Palmas stumble at home against Valencia, Atlético beat uninspiring big brother at home and Barcelona look rejuvinated. Here's our paggage that contains all you need to know about round three in Spanish La Liga.

The most eagerly expected much most certainly was played in Madrid as Atlético hosted Real in the Madrid derby. Atlético went to the game with two wins already while Real had already dropped points in round one against Eibar. 
Real were uninspiring and only managed 4 shots in total with 58% possession. Atlético on the other hand relied heavily on their set-pieces delivered by Koke. It was Kevin Gameiro who struck first by heading in Koke's corner at near post in 44th minute. Koke himself finished the scoring with a thunderous free kick in 87th minute. Zidane's Real seem to be in all kinds of trouble at the moment. 

The previous league leaders Las Palmas stumbled at home to a 3-1 defeat which saw Simone Zaza scoring a brace. At Camp Nou Barcelona were in control against Athletic and thumped the visitors 5 goals to zero. In Sevilla Wissam Ben Yedder celebrated a hat trick in his first outing of the season. See all the results below.

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The defeat for Las Palmas means that after three rounds Atlético Madrid are the only team with 100% record in the league. Villarreal and Real Sociedad finally got their point tally open this round but their season start cannot be described successful. Same applies with Athletic Bilbao who suffered a heavy defeat to Barcelona. 

Eibar on the other hand are on high and have gained 7 points out of 9 possible. Valencia, Sevilla, Barcelona and Las Palmas form the hunting pack with six points each. Celta are third unbeaten team in the league with five points gained. 

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I'm not satisfied on how these round reviews look like. Anyone got any ideas how I could make it better looking like for example having the league table floating on the right hand side narrowing the text field.

 

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PREVIEW: Espanyol face Las Palmas

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Espanyol 2.25 Draw 3.20 UD Las Palmas 2.75

Espanyol and Las Palmas open up round four in Spanish La Liga in Friday evening at RCDE Stadium. 

The teams go into these fixtures only one point between them as both teams lost their fixture last week. Las Palmas are sixth in the table with six points while Espanyol currently hold 9th position with five points. Last season Quique Sanchez Flores' men beat Las Palmas at RCDE in a thrilling 4-3 in March while at Estadio Gran Canaria the teams played goalless draw.

Espanyol go into this game as a slight favorite even though the team is missing a long list of players. Sachez Flores has been with his club for a longer period and Espanyol are more gelled up team while Moyes' Las Palmas are still searching for their more solid footsteps which the defeat against Valencia proved. Espanyol's 4-4-2 will give Las Palmas some trouble as the Gran Canarian team have already conceded three goals in total from passages of play through the middle and don't seem to be able to find the way to improve this area as Simoze Zaza scored a brace against them last than a week ago. 

Espanyol are missing Pablo Piatti, Álvaro Vázquez, Mario Hermoso and Boschilia through injuries while Javi Fuego is ruled out because of a suspension. José Manuel Jurado, Esteban Granero, Didac Vila and Marco Roca are also unavailable. 

UD Las Palmas are only missing Dani Castellano who will be out for couple of weeks more. 

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La Liga round 4

Saturday

Deportivo vs Sevilla

Getafe vs Levante

Alavés vs Barcelona

Girona vs Betis

Sunday

Villarreal vs Atlético

Real Madrid vs Leganés

Athletic Club vs Málaga

Valencia vs Eibar

Real Sociedad vs Celta

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Substitutes edge the game for Las Palmas

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Jonathan Calleri netted his third of the season against Espanyol

Las Palmas climbed back to top four as they beat Espanyol 2-0 at RCDE Stadium. Las Palmas relied on late goals and substitutes to gain the victory.

Espanyol went to the game missing many of their key players but gave a fair game for Las Palmas who though deserved their victory. Las Palmas gave early suggestions of things happening with two great chances after 10 minutes but Diego López managed to deny both Jonathan Calleri and Vitolo inside one minute. 

It took Las Palmas 71 minutes to get ahead as Alen Halilovic set Alberto Aquilani up at the edge of the penalty area who let it go and smashed the ball in from distance to score his first goal with the club. Aquilani had replaced Sergi Samper just minutes before the goal. Aquilani was the key once again as Las Palmas sealed the game as he set up another substitute Loïc Remy up down the left hand side and the Frenchman provided an easy tap-in for Jonathan Calleri who made it 2-0 in 89th minute. 

Las Palmas had 60% of the possession and tested Diego Lopéz for 9 times in total while Espanyol only managed to get 10 shots in total with only two of them testing Raul Lizoaín. 

With the victory Las Palmas climbed briefly to second place in the table in even points with Atlético Madrid but with worse goal difference. Las Palmas boss David Moyes was happy with his team after the game:

"I think we were excellent today to be honest. We should have gotten ahead earlier but I think that our substitutes Aquilani and Hernan Toledo really made the difference today and I would say that Toledo was the best man on the pitch today."

"It wasn't easy. We controlled the ball really well and created but Espanyol with those two men up front were always going to be dangerous and we were saved couple of times with a narrow offside decision."

La Liga continues on Saturday with four games and on Sunday the round is completed with five more games.  

Espanyol (4-4-2): Diego Lopéz; Sergio Garcia, Naldo, Duarte, Aarón; Víctor Sáncez, Dávid Lopez, Darder, Hernan Pérez, Léo Baptistão, Moreno

Subs: Javi López, Diop, Navarro

Goals: -

Las Palmas (4-2-3-1): Lizoáin; Michel, Bigas, Lemos, Navarro; Castellano, Samper; Halilovic, Viera, Vitolo; Calleri

Subs: Aquilani, Toledo, Remy

Goals: Aquilani (71), Calleri (89)

MotM: Aquilani

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JORNADA 4: Fourth round provides no shocks

Favorites were strong in the Spanish La Liga fourth round. Atlético Madrid still kept their 100% winning record while both Basque teams finally got their first fixtures of the season. David Moyes' Las Palmas bounced back and still continued their strong start of the season while Betis still struggle along with Málaga.

Barcelona and Real Madrid kept going strong this round as Barca beat Alavés away from home with goals from Luis Suaréz and Ousmane Dembélé. While Real Madrid's Karim Benzema recorded a four goal evening against Leganés. Atlético faced the hardest challenge of the big three but managed narrowly beat Villarreal away from home with two goals from Antoine Griezmann.

Real Sociedad and Athletic Bilbao took their first victories with 2-1 victories. Adnan Januzaj recorded already his fourth goal of the season in La Liga. See all the results and the league table below. 

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PREVIEW: Las Palmas to pile up the misery for Málaga in La Liga midweek round

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Las Palmas 1.80 Draw 3.40 Málaga 2.75

La Liga continues with full round of fixtures from Tuesday to Thursday. At Estadio Gran Canaria UD Las Palmas host Málaga who have started the season miserably under Michél and find themselves in 18th place while Las Palmas are fifth.

David Moyes is likely to give Loïc Remy his first start with the club along with Hernan Toledo to both rotate and reward the squad. Moyes will probably change the team's shape to something close to 4-4-2 and is said to be willing to see how well Jonathan Calleri and Remy can link up together. Las Palmas are only missing long term injuree Dani Castellano.

Málaga on the other hand are facing a long list of injuries as Miguel Torres, Keko, Juankar, Gonzalo Castro, Jony, Roberto, Zdvarko Kuzmanovic and Adalberto Peñaranda will all miss the game through injuries while Recio is under suspension.

With the horrific injury situation for Málaga and current form counted we cannot look beyond anything else but home victory. Las Palmas will pile up the misery for Málaga and take three points here. 

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Tuesday:

Levante vs Deportivo

Barcelona vs Getafe

Wednesday:

Atlético vs Girona

Leganés vs Villarreal

Alavés vs Athletic Club

Sevilla vs Real Sociedad

Celta vs Real Madrid

Las Palmas vs Málaga

Thursday:

Betis vs Valencia

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Lizoáin's goalkeeping clinique secures 3 points for Las Palmas

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UD Las Palmas hosted Málaga on Wednesday evening in La Liga clash at Estadio Gran Canaria. The visitors came to this game as 18th team in the league table while Las Palmas were holding shared second place along with Valencia, Sevilla and Barcelona with 9 points each. 

Las Palmas manager David Moyes lined up his team in a 4-4-1-1 formation where Loïc Remy took a place behind Jonathan Calleri as a shadow striker. Moyes also handed first starts for Hernan Toledo and David Simon. 

Las Palmas were predicted to win comfortably but they were held back foot for most of the game. The first and the only goal of the game was scored by Las Palmas though as Jonathan Calleri won the second ball from a Jonathan Viera corner kick and deflected the ball to Loïc Remy who smashed it in from 24 yards out in 9th minute. This was the first goal for Remy in Las Palmas shirt. 

Málaga tested excellent Raul Lizoáin throughout the game in total with 9 shots on target but the Spaniard did not back down. It was though Jonathan Calleri who was close to strike the second goal of the game as he missed from 10 meters out after Jonathan Viera had broken into the penalty area with strong run. Lizoáin recorded his best save of the game in 67th minute by denying Borja Baston who had an open goal from six yards out but Lizoáin managed to get his hand in front of the ball to deflect the ball out for a corner.

Las Palmas head coach David Moyes critisized his team after the game for an uninspiring performance:

"I think we were lucky today. The players that we brought in today were not able to spice up our attacking play. We have to thank Raul today for the result."

Málaga's Míchel on the other hand was cursing his team's luck:

"We most definitely should have gotten something out of the game today. We were dominant but their goalkeeper managed to be everywhere today. If we will get that amount chances then we will eventually have to score but we need the goals sooner rather than later."

Moyes didn't see the link up that he was expecting from his players:

"There wasn't that today. We need to work better as a team and offer more options to those who are carrying the ball. We need more fluidity for sure."

Las Palmas (4-4-1-1): Lizoáin; Simón, David García, Lemos, Navarro; Toledo, Viera, Aquilani, Vitolo; Remy; Calleri

Subs: Samper, Vicente, Tannane

Goals: Remy (9)

Málaga (4-2-3-1): Roberto; Rosales, Baysse, Hérnandez, Diego González; Juanpi, Rolón; Rolan, Borja Lasso, Ontiveros; Bastón

Subs: Ricca, Jony, Cifuentes

Goals: - 

Man of the Match: Lizoáin

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JORNADA 5: Lionel Messi shines while Cristiano Ronaldo records the worst performance of the round

FC Barcelona continued their good form with a dominating 5-0 victory at Camp Nou against Getafe. Lionel Messi scored a brace to add his tally all the way up to five goals in as many games while Luis Suárez leads the scoring charts with six in five. 

Atlético Madrid are still keeping hold of their 100% record after beating Girona with ease at home. Antoine Griezmann and Kevin Gameiro are still forming an effective partnership up front with both scoring. Basque clubs Real Sociedad and Athletic Bilbao continued their struggle by losing against Sevilla and Alavés which sees both teams in bottom half of the table. Fellow strugglers Málaga and Espanyol finished also this round without points.

Pick of the Wednesday though was Real Madrid's loss against Celta de Vigo and struggling Cristiano Ronaldo picking the worst player of the round award. Marcelo's red card didn't help the reigning champions and after Kovacevic's equalizer in 81st minute Real threw away the point in the final minute of the game. 

On Thursday Real Betis opened their win account for the season by beating Valencia at home through a goal from Valencia man Joaquin. See all the results and the league table below.

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All likes and comments/suggestions highly appreciated. Guess that people don't enjoy La Liga that much?

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PREVIEW: Athletic Club host Las Palmas at San Mames

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Athletic Club 2.00 Draw 3.20 Las Palmas 3.20

These two teams come into this game from different kind of situations as Las Palmas have won 4 out of 5 possible while Athletic have only won one. Both teams have though struggled in attacking end as Las Palmas only have eight goals in total in 5 fixtures while Athletic have only recorded four.

Athletic are likely to get back Aritz Aduriz who has been struggling with his fitness while Óscar De Marcos will definitely miss this affair and Mikel Vesga is doubtful with twisted ankle injury still bothering. Yeray is a long term injury while Eneko Boveda and Enric Saborit have been left un-registered. 

Las Palmas will only miss Dani Castellano for sure yet Jonathan Viera has been struggling with his fitness because of several knocks that he has had during recent games. Viera hasn't yet managed to play 90 minutes this season.

Both teams will line up with 4-2-3-1 formations and basically with best available squads. Ziganda's men have clear advantage in terms of quality but form talks in favor of Las Palmas. Athletic are looking to control the game and press hard and this could be lethal against Moyes' side who will try to pass the ball under the pressure. A tight home win will be the most likely scenario. 

Saturday 23.9.2017

Girona FC vs CD Leganés
Málaga vs SD Eibar
Deportivo de La Coruña vs Barcelona
Real Madrid vs Sevilla

Sunday 24.9.2017

RCD Espanyol vs Real Betis
Valencia vs Atlético Madrid
Villarreal vs Celta de Vigo
Getafe vs Deportivo
Athletic Club vs UD Las Palmas

Monday 25.9.2017

Real Sociedad vs Levante

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'Lucky' Las Palmas escape with a late point

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Athletic Bilbao and UD Las Palmas labored to a 1-1 draw at San Mames late in the Sunday evening with a late equalizer from Las Palmas' Hernan Toledo. This lead to a war of words between the managers José Ángel Ziganda and David Moyes.

Athletic were in control most of the match without creating easy chances but limiting Las Palmas' attacking opportunities by pushing them all the way back to their own half. Las Palmas though held firm limiting the chances that Athletic created with their slow tempo build-ups. 
It took a bit of magic on 75th minute from Iker Muniain to create something. The Basque Messi dribbled all the way through the halfway line to the byline and played a delightful one two with Iñaki Willims before setting up Markel Susaeta to an easy tap-in. Athletic already were man down at this point as they had used their substitutions and Aritz Aduriz was forced to leave the pitch on 69th minute. Ten minutes later it was Susaeta who collided with David Simon while challenging for a high ball. Athletic were down to 9 men with four minutes to go. 
Las Palmas equalized eventually on 95th minute as Hérnan Toledo's through ball was cut out by Mikel San José who cleared the ball back straight to the Argentine who had a free passage to the penalty area which he used before putting the ball behind Kepa. It was 1-1 and the game over.

Athletic boss Ziganda refused to shake the hand of David Moyes after the game and critisized the Scottish manager's team both with their performance and aggressive style of play:

"They were lucky and dirty today. Really lucky for sure. We lost two of our key players in the last twenty minutes or so and also there is Mikel Vesga with a knock. This wasn't really the first one during this season when they play like that. This type of football doesn't have the demand in Spain. I understand they play the game like this in England and Scotland but this is Spain and he has to respect the culture."

Las Palmas boss David Moyes had his version to say about things:

"First of all we weren't lucky as we both created two or three proper chances and they had one. We had five fouls in total against their nine. Also I am not the one using all my subs in 65 minutes. Also I was not the one not willing to shake hands after the game."

With the point Las Palmas climbed to shared third position with Eibar, having 13 points from 18 possible. Athletic Bilbao are 14th on the table with only six points.

Athletic Bilbao (4-2-3-1): Kepa; Lekue, San José, Laporte, Balenziaga; Iturraspe, Beñat; Susaeta, Raúl García, Williams; Aduriz
Subs: Rico, Muniain, Vesga
Goals: Susaeta (75')

Las Palmas (4-2-3-1): Chichizola; David Simón, Lemos, Bigas, Navarro; Castellano, Samper; Vitolo, Vicente, Viera; Calleri
Subs: Halilovic, Tana, Toledo
Goals: Toledo (90+5')

MotM: Markel Susaeta 

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JORNADA 6: Atlético maintain 100% record

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The sixth round of Spanish La Liga failed to produce major shocks as all the three giants took three points and the surprise baggage SD Eibar also kept their strong form going. Leganés, Málaga and Villarreal are still finding it tough this season and while the season is still young the questions are being asked especially with Málaga and Villarreal. 

Girona piled up the misery for CD Leganés on Saturday with a convincing 4-0 home victory which sees Laganés still without a victory and just two points from six games. Málaga on the other hand were expected to bounce back but failed to do it at home and it was David Lombán again from penalty spot securing three points for SD Eibar who stand third in the table. Lionel Messi continued his strong form with two penalty goals which secured three points for Barcelona. Cristiano Ronaldo scored for Real Madrid from a penalty spot and the reigning champions got a late victory through Mateo Kovacevic to beat Sevilla 2-1.

All eyes were on Atlético Madrid on Sunday as the league leaders traveled to face Valencia in a tough away game. A brace from Yannick Carrasco was enough to secure the sixth win for Simeone's side who are holding the pole position three points ahead of Barcelona. Elsewhere Villarreal continued their woeful form by losing 0-1 to Celta. Las Palmas escaped with a late equalizer against Athletic Club in a heated up match. 

On Monday Real Sociedad recorded already their third draw of the season as Levante escaped with a point against them. The both Basque clubs are finding it tough to secure victories this season. La Liga continues next weekend before the international break with a full set of fixtures. See all the results and league table below. 

 

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Thanks lads, much appreciated. 

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PREVIEW: Clash of the overperformers as Eibar host Las Palmas

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SD Eibar 2.50 Draw 3.00 UD Las Palmas 2.63

It has been a great start for the season for both Eibar and Las Palmas as these teams come to this game holding third and fourth positions. Both teams were expected to hold places in lower mid-table but they have been defying the odds so far. Both teams have three unbeaten games 

Eibar will go to this game with their all familiar 4-4-2 which has seen them be so successful so far. Sergi Enrich and Charles up front have been linking up well together while David Lombán, the centre back, already has four goals from penalties this season. Las Palmas on the other hand are still looking to get the best out of their creative trio Vitolo, Jonathan Viera and Alen Halilovic who are likely to reunite again as a starting trio in more advanced midfield positions.

Both teams come to this game three games unbeaten and the most likely scenario is that this run will continue as a bore draw is most likely on the cards. Both teams have almost clean bill of health as Eibar will only miss Yoel from their lineup and Dani Castellano is still absent for Las Palmas. 

Friday

SD Eibar vs Las Palmas

Saturday

CD Leganés vs Valencia
Celta de Vigo vs Girona FC
Atlético Madrid vs RCD Espanyol
Real Betis vs Málaga

Sunday

FC Barcelona vs Real Sociedad
Getafe vs Athletic Club
Deportivo Alavés vs Deportivo de La Coruña
Levante vs Real Madrid
Sevilla vs Villarreal

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Las Palmas draw the critiques after Eibar defeat

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Eibar were stronger by 2 goals to 1 against Las Palmas at Ipúrua in the only La Liga fixture on Friday. David Moyes' side continue drawing the critiques.

Eibar got a perfect start to the game as Joan Jordán won the ball from Sergi Samper in the midfield, Sergio Enrich drew two Las Palmas defenders to him and managed to setup Charles who beat Raul Lizoáin in goal despite Mauricio Lemos' closing down. Eibar continued controlling the game without creating anything before the half time. In the beginning of the second half it seemed to be all over as Álex Gálvez headed the ball in from Sergio Leon's corner kick. 

Las Palmas finally woke up to the game for the final fifteen minutes but a consolation goal from Tana was not enough as Las Palmas' late charge was cut short on 94th minute as Michel faced a straight red card as he hit Inui with his elbow. 

Eibar manager José Luis Mendilibar and David Moyes had a tight and heated conversation after the incident. Moyes' side was only just week ago critisized with their unorthodox approach and Michel's dismissal heated up that conversation once again. 

Moyes' decided to bring in Loïc Remy to the lineup to replace Jonathan Calleri who was on a three game goal drough. Moyes replaced the Frenchman with the Argentinian at half time as Remy had already got caught five times in offside position. 

SD Eibar (4-4-2): Dmitrovic; Capa, Gálvez, Oliveira, José Ángel; Pedro León, Jórdan, García, Inui; Enrich, Charles
Subs: Bébé, Escalante
Goals: Charles (8') Álex Gálvez (50')

Las Palmas (4-2-3-1): Lizoáin; Michel, Bigas, Lemos, Navarro; Castellano, Samper, Halilovic, Viera, Vitolo; Remy
Subs: Calleri, Vicente, Tana
Goals: Tana (82')

MotM: Charles

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"Moyes losing the most important battle that he has"

BT Sports' football experts Steve McManaman and James Richardson have analyzed David Moyes' start with Las Palmas.

Kuvahaun tulos haulle steve mcmanaman james richardsonKuvahaun tulos haulle steve mcmanaman james richardson

David Moyes, the new UD Las Palmas head coach, has been under radars of the media for the whole beginning of the season. After six rounds Las Palmas, a team predicted to finish 14th in the Spanish La Liga, hold 7th position in the league with 3 wins, 1 draw and 2 defeats. The league position is seven positions higher than predicted but is it all positive start for Moyes? Our La Liga team have a story to tell for you.

UD Las Palmas are a team that have been in the La Liga now for two seasons in a row and for the previous two seasons the team has established itself in the mid-table of the La Liga by finishing 11th and 14th in the last two seasons. The Gran Canarian club are looking to build on that once again this season. But with teams like Barcelona, Real Madrid, Atlético Madrid, Valencia and Sevilla the competition for European spots is always going to be tough and even in higher mid-table the competition is always high with teams like Athletic Bilbao, Villarreal and Real Sociedad involved. Las Palmas are well included so far in both of these but Steve McManaman is not all convinced about them:

"With UD Las Palmas the team is 40% about the result and 60% or even more about the entertainment. The fan base in Gran Canaria is never going to be large throughout the whole year and as a head coach of the team you always need to be vary about that. Last season the team summed second highest possession in La Liga and the goals were flowing and people were entertained."

This is where Moyes is failing according to McManaman. 

"With David Moyes it was never going to be a match made in heaven. David Moyes as a manager is a great one for me, I really think so. But as a manager David Moyes is 100% of the result and 70% of defending while the fans expect entertainment when they go to the games."

"The start has been good and because of that you could say that he has all the backing behind at the moment. But in the last three games the team has been far from what people expect: they have been lucky by earning win, draw and a loss and with a worse luck this record could be three defeats. Also they have only scored one goal a game lately and created less than 12 shots in total per game for most of the matches."

"With the fans and the players it could take just one bad run with the team and you are virtually gone. For me the bad run has potentially already started as they look bad on the pitch and in the last two games they haven't got the wanted result anymore. Five more games like this for Las Palmas and the questions will be asked as the team will then be in lower mid-table if not worse and not even performing well. For me it looks likely that he is losing the most important fight in the club: the fans."

James Richardson has always had his say on Moyes' start with the team.

"I personally like David Moyes as a manager and he has done a good job with Las Palmas. You could say that he isn't the right man for the job and he hasn't had the best out of the team so far in attack. But for me people should be looking at those players that he is getting the most of. Raul Lizoáin in goal has been the best player in the league in his position, Mauricio Lemos looks a better player this season and Ximo Navarro certainly looks like La Liga calibre right now."

"You could argue that he is only getting things out from defenders but look at for example Jonathan Calleri and Vitolo. Vitolo has set up four goals already this season and he should have scored 2-3 already as he has been getting those chances. Calleri on the other hand looks totally different compared to what he was with West Ham last season."

"The difficulty for Moyes is that he actually cannot drop the influential and underperforming players like Jonathan Viera as that will probably lose him another important battle within the club."

Kuvahaun tulos haulle jonathan viera

Jonathan Viera hasn't had a good start for the season

"The situation with Viera will be vital for Moyes as he is a player that can either make his job a lot easier or even make him doomed. He is extremely important player on the pitch, in the dressing room and like a son for all the fans of the club."

Las Palmas will meet Real Betis at home in La Liga round seven as the league will return back to action after two weeks international break. Alen Halilovic, Oussama Tannane and Vitolo will be representing their countries in international fixtures while all the other players are in David Moyes' disposal as the Scott will look to improve the team's fortunes especially in the attacking zone.
 

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JORNADA 7: Still 100% Atlético?

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Atlético Madrid where the biggest question mark for La Liga round seven as they were top of the table with six wins from six matches as they hosted Espanyol in Madrid on Saturday. Were they able to keep the good times rolling? Find out next. 

The round started on Friday as surprise packages Eibar and Las Palmas met. Eibar were stronger team throughout most of the game and recorded a deserved 2-1 victory through goals from Charles and Gálvez. Tana's consolation goal on 82nd minute wasn't enough to guarantee anything for the visitors and Michel's ugly elbow hit was the biggest talking point of the evening.

On Saturday things got more interesting. Valencia and Celta Vigo started the day with 2-0 victories each with braces from Fabio Orellano and Iago Aspas. But the biggest game of the day was Atlético hosting Espanyol. The result was the same: 2-0 with goals from Griezmann and Gameiro and so Simeone's men continued their perfect start to the season. In the final fixture of Saturday it was Real Betis' turn to pile on the misery for Málaga as they beat the visitors with three goals to one. 

On Sunday Real Madrid and Barcelona were in action and looking to keep the gap to Atlético tolerable. Barcelona duly delivered by beating Real Sociedad 3-0 at home in midday fixture. Real Madrid were in action at seven by visiting Levante and they managed to keep on winning ways also and Zidane's men got goals spread for many of the important players as Ronaldo scored a brace and was aided by Modric and Bale to make it 4-2 for the visitors. Villarreal and Athletic Bilbao, the two teams struggling, continued to struggle by losing their games against Sevilla and Getafe. 

See all the La Liga results from round 7 and the league table below. La Liga will return to action in two weeks after the international break and in round 8 Real Madrid will host the first El Clásico of the season. 

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Jonathan Viera injury falls for Las Palmas

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UD Las Palmas have potentially lost Jonathan Viera for rest of the year through injury as the Spanish midfielder broke his ankle during a training session on Thursday. Viera will be visiting a specialist about his injury and will be treated by staff outside Las Palmas during the course of his injury. It is expected that Viera will be out of action for 4-5 months. 

The fan favorite has been disappointing so far this season as the midfielder has only summed one assist and no goals in seven La Liga matches. Viera scored seven goals in total last season and 10 in season 2015/16. The skillful midfielder recently signed a new contract extension that lasts until July 2022.

October 12th was an unlucky day in total for Las Palmas as Momo and Tana also injured themselves with less serious injuries. The club was already missing Dani Castellano through a long term injury. Las Palmas will host Real Betis on 14th of October at Estadio de Gran Canaria. 

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David Moyes RESIGNS after just four months with UD Las Palmas

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David Moyes has resigned as Las Palmas manager after a good start that lasted only for seven games.

The Las Palmas manager has been told to be unhappy with his position in the club and having problems adjusting into the local culture in Gran Canaria. Moyes was not in charge of the club's transfers during the summer transfer window and the club had previously announced that the director of the football Toni Cruz will be in charge of the transfer also in the future. 

Las Palmas were enjoying a encouraging start in La Liga under the helm of Moyes as the team currently are sitting in 7th place in Spanish La Liga after seven rounds played with 13 points from 7 games. 

Moyes himself has claimed that he was disappointed with the way he was treated by the people around the club and the fans. There have also been rumors of Moyes not getting hold of the dressing room in Las Palmas as he has been struggling with the Spanish language which seems to have prevented him to form a good atmosphere among with the first team players of whom most speak Spanish as their native language. He has been criticized lately both in press and social media of tactical choices that have seen the club struggling in the last three games.

UD Las Palmas have announced that former player and U-19 team coach Juan Carlos Valerón will take over as an interim manager at the club and he will be in charge of the club's management for rest of the season. Valerón retired from professional football in 2016 at the age of 40 and has since been working as a coach in Las Palmas U-19 team. Valerón represented his boyhood club for seven years in total and also played for Málaga, Atlético Madrid and Deportivo La Coruña. Valerón capped 46 times for Spain between years 1998-2005. Valerón will be in charge of the club for the first time already tomorrow as Las Palmas host Betis at Estadio de Gran Canaria.

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I'm kinda 50-50 with continuing at the moment as I'm not certain if I have readers or not. Writing just for myself is not really worth the trouble. Please, leave your opinions and ideas people. 

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Guest El Payaso

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Juan Carlos Valerón: the current staff will stay

Kuvahaun tulos haulle juan carlos valeron press conference

The new UD Las Palmas boss Juan Carlos Valerón answered several questions during his first press conference in the eve of his first game in command against Real Betis.

"First of all I want to salud David Moyes of his job at the club as the team already did. I think that he did an incredible job here and I think that he will be successful again in his next job. In here he showed what he is really made of and I wish him good luck in his next challenge."

"I think that the team is ready and I am ready. Hosting Real Betis at Estadio Gran de Gran Canaria is a dream start for me as I will be allowed to be in front of the crowd first time wearing a suit and actually being in control of the team. It was a dream for me after I finished my playing career and I am now fullfilling this dream much earlier than I expected."

Valerón also talked about tactics.

"Obviously I've seen all of the games this season and I've seen how the team played. We all of course have our own sets of minds but I doubt that we will do any drastic changes in this short time period. The time for those, if needed, will be on those parts of season when we have time to do training. But currently we are in a situation where we will play three games inside two weeks and after that we have the difficult Atlético Madrid game so we will be just concentrating on the results and try to do as well as we can."

One of the most interesting question obviously was the staff that David Moyes had come in.

"I've spoken to the staff here: Ryan Giggs, Phil Neville and Alan Irvine. Alan, as we know, has already left the club as that was his intention all along but with Phil and Ryan we will continue working together, they will stay here. Leon Osman and Tony Hibbert too. I've worked with these gentlemen in the training pitch with U-19 and I am convinced that they are the right men in right jobs."

Valerón also refused to be content with just a care-taker role within the club.

"Of course my aim is to make this a long term project as I am living my dream here. I've been given until end of the season what I can do and if we do well then why not continue from there."

Valerón described his philosophies with Las Palmas with three words:

"Entertaining, brave and progressing."

 

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Guest El Payaso

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JORNADA 8: El Clasico is the pick of the games in round eight

Resultado de imagen para el clasico

Spanish La Liga is back after the international break with a full round of fixtures. El Clasico at Santiago Bernabeu is the pick of the games while league leaders Atlético Madrid will travel to struggling Málaga. UD Las Palmas were the first one to change managers. 

The round will start on Friday with two strugglers facing each other. Espanyol will be the favorites here though as Leganes are still without a win after seven rounds and already strongly tipped for relegation. 

On Saturday we have four games. The round will start with an interesting matchup as UD Las Palmas will host Real Betis at Estadio de Gran Canaria. Juan Carlos Valerón is in charge for the first time for his team. Valencia will then look to climb back to top 4 as they will host Celta Vigo. Girona will then host Sevilla who are fourth at the moment. Struggling Real Madrid side will host the first El Clasico and they must be looking to try and close the gap to Atlético which already is eight points after seven rounds and Zidane's men are struggling. Barcelona on the other hand are in strong form as they have won all of their games after the round 1 loss to Sevilla and will provide a tough opposition.

Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez have both had an excellent start to the season and have combined 14 goals in total. Ousmane Dembélé hasn't yet reached the level that Neymar set before at Camp Nou but has been the regular starter on left hand side providing assists mainly and linking up well with Jordi Alba who has been the best defender in La Liga so far. 

In Real Madrid though it's a different story and Zinedine Zidane hasn't yet found a winning formula for Real Madrid as once mighty BBC now seems to have fallen from the grace. Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema have featured regularly while Gareth Bale has been suffering from injuries and Marco Asensio and Isco have been filling in for the Welsh. Zidane might actually boost things up by giving surprise starts for players like Dani Ceballos in the derby.   

Málaga will host Atlético Madrid in the first game on Sunday and will be looking to get Atlético to drop points first time this season. Atlético missing both Antoine Griezmann and Kevin Gameiro will make the task harder as he will now have to rely on Fernando Torres and Luciano Vietto to get the job done. With Atlético's incredible strong defense and Málaga's woeful form one goal might well be enough from the Capital side. 

 Villarreal and Real Sociedad want to improve their form as they host Levante and Alavés. The round ends on Monday as strugglers Athletic Bilbao will host the biggest surprise paggage so far, Eibar.

Friday 13.10

RCD Espanyol vs Leganés

Saturday 14.10

UD Las Palmas vs Real Betis
Valencia vs Celta de Vigo
Girona FC vs Sevilla
Real Madrid vs Barcelona

Sunday 15.10 

Málaga vs Atlético
Deportivo vs Getafe
Villarreal vs Levante
Real Sociedad vs Alavés

Monat 16.10

Athletic Club vs Eibar

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