Madrid stunned by Leganes at home, eliminated from Copa

first_imgNEXT BLOCK ASIA 2.0 introduces GURUS AWARDS to recognize and reward industry influencers 2 ‘newbie’ drug pushers fall in Lucena sting The elimination in the Copa quarterfinals was the latest setback for Madrid in what has been a disappointing season.It is fourth in the Spanish league, trailing leader Barcelona by 19 points with a game in hand, and its only realistic chance of a title the rest of the season will be in the Champions League, where it faces Paris Saint-Germain in the last 16.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSLillard, Anthony lead Blazers over ThunderSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutThe Bernabeu crowd loudly jeered Madrid after the loss, with Zidane among those criticized the most after fielding second-stringers despite the big gap to Barcelona in La Liga.“We clearly failed,” Zidane said. “And I’m the one responsible for it.” Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles00:59Sports venues to be ready in time for SEA Games01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City Alaves forward Ruben Sobrino, who scored in both matches, missed the decisive penalty by sending the ball over the crossbar at Mendizorroza Stadium.Rodrigo, Santi Mina and Jose Luis Gaya all converted from the spot for the visitors, with their only miss coming from midfielder Geoffrey Kondogbia after a save by goalkeeper Antonio Sivera. Alaves’ goals in the shootout were scored by Tomas Pina and Munir El Haddadi.El Haddadi put Alaves in front with a header into the top corner after a long cross by Rodrigo Ely in the 73rd, and Santi Mina equalized in a breakaway four minutes later after a making a run from near the halfway line.Sobrino netted the winner from close range following a free kick into the area. Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Slow and steady hope for near-extinct Bangladesh tortoises Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Leganes’ players celebrate their victory against Real Madrid at the end of the Spanish Copa del Rey quarterfinal second leg soccer match between Real Madrid and Leganes at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium in Madrid, Wednesday, Jan. 24, 2018. Leganes won 2-1. (AP Photo/Francisco Seco)MADRID — Real Madrid followed its biggest win of the season with its most embarrassing defeat on Wednesday, and the pressure is back on for coach Zinedine Zidane and his players.After routing Deportivo La Coruna 7-1 to give fans a glimmer of hope after a series of poor results, Madrid crashed out of the Copa del Rey with a shock 2-1 loss to Leganes at Santiago Bernabeu Stadium.ADVERTISEMENT San Miguel Beer still unscathed; Meralco defense junks KIA LATEST STORIEScenter_img Playing without Cristiano Ronaldo and other regular starters, Madrid was unable to defend its 1-0 win from the first leg, being eliminated on away goals after a 2-2 draw on aggregate.“We were not supposed to be eliminated like this after having won the first leg,” said Zidane, calling the defeat the worst moment of his coaching career with Madrid. “I’m upset. It’s a big disappointment. I know it’s a difficult night for the fans.”It’s the second consecutive year Madrid has been eliminated in the Copa quarterfinals, having lost to Celta Vigo last season.Leganes, based just south of Madrid, was playing in the last eight of the Copa for the first time in the team’s 89-year history.“The key was that we believed we could achieve this, even after the loss last week,” Leganes coach Asier Garitano said. “We played a great match and everything went well.”ADVERTISEMENT The visitors provided the bigger threat at the Bernabeu, opening the scoring with Javi Eraso’s curling shot into the top corner of the net. Eraso picked up the loose ball just outside the area after a bad exchange of passes between Madrid defenders Achraf Hakimi and Nacho Fernandez. Hakimi’s pass was too short and Fernandez couldn’t control the ball under pressure from Eraso.After being jeered at halftime, Madrid came back strongly after the break, with Karim Benzema scoring early with a close-range shot over the goalkeeper after a through ball by Lucas Vazquez. The goal ended Benzema’s six-match scoreless streak that dated back to November.However, Leganes stunned the home crowd again less than 10 minutes later, when Gabriel Pires scored with a header from a corner taken by Eraso.Benzema nearly scored an equalizer that would have allowed Madrid to advance in the 81st, but his shot from inside the area was saved by goalkeeper Nereo Champagne. The goalkeeper also stopped Sergio Ramos from scoring with a header in the 85th.Madrid, which won the Spanish Super Cup and the Club World Cup earlier this season, endured a three-match winless streak at home before trouncing Deportivo in Sunday’s league match.On Tuesday, Sevilla advanced to the semifinals after eliminating Atletico Madrid 5-2 on aggregate. Three-time defending champion Barcelona hosts city rival Espanyol on Thursday to try to overcome a 1-0 first-leg loss.WIN ON PENALTIESTwo penalty saves by goalkeeper Jaume Domenech helped Valencia defeat Alaves 3-2 in a shootout.A 2-1 win by Alaves in regulation time of the second leg evened the series at 3-3 on aggregate. Domenech then stopped shots by Alfonso Pedraza and forward Hernan Perez to send Valencia through to the last four for the second time in three seasons. 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Match-fixing episode affected my game: Sachin Tendulkar

first_imgSachin Tendulkar has for the first time admitted that the match-fixing episodes in 1999-2000 had initially affected his game and the Indian team had to go through a difficult and painful phase as “spectators looked at us with suspicion”.Tendulkar said he was not in the right frame of mind during India’s disastrous tour of Australia where they were thrashed 0-3 in 1999-2000.”I can tell you that I was never approached by anyone, neither we had any discussions about the same in the team meeting,” Tendulkar told former South African Board President Dr Ali Bacher in an interview for Super Sport Channel.”I remember that there was a stage in 1999-2000 when it was very difficult as we were to play Australia. Before the series these things started making rounds. As a cricketer that’s the last thing I want.”You want your beloved game to be as clean as possible. I wanted the spectators to enjoy the contest and not look at us with suspicion. To play well, players need to be in right frame of mind and I can tell you that I was not in that frame of mind,” Tendulkar said, recollecting the disastrous series.The pain in his voice was evident as he gave the interview. “Every match you play and people pass on loose comments. This was really hurting me and the whole team,” said the maestro.Tendulkar felt that their historic 2-1 series win over Australia at home was the turning point. “I was sure that we needed to put up a very special performance against Aussies so that cricket lovers forget what has happened in the past and start enjoying the game again and move on. With grace of God we managed to do that.advertisement”We lost the first match at Mumbai. But in the next match at Kolkata we fought back from very bad position and won that match to level the series. Last match was even harder. At Chennai while chasing small total we lost eight wickets but won that Test match and series too.”I was happy for the fact we forced cricket lovers to forget about that bad chapter and start following cricket again.”Recollecting the horror days of match fixing, Bacher revealed that the South African Board was indeed approached by bookmakers.”We were directly approached by bookmakers to take their offer to the players through team meeting. Those were days when in couple of ICC meetings, I had raised this issue,” he said.With inputs from PTIlast_img read more