Spanish League: Real Madrid settles for scoreless draw with Osasuna
Pamplona, Spain (4E Sports) – Defending Spanish League champion Real Madrid failed to gain ground on Barcelona as it settled for a scoreless draw with last-place Osasuna Saturday at Estadio El Sadar.
With the draw, Real Madrid drops 15 points behind Barcelona before the league leader visited Malaga Sunday. Real Madrid has only one win to show in its last four games.
The draw has put more pressure on coach Jose Mourinho as he failed to make adjustments in the absence of top scorer Cristiano Ronaldo and several key pieces due to suspension or injury.
Ronaldo was suspended for one game after picking up his fifth yellow card of the season in the 4-3 win over Real Sociedad. Sergio Ramos and Antonio Adan were also suspended.
Mourinho made his move and sent reinforcements after halftime but Kaka lasted just 18 minutes on the pitch after receiving a red card in the 76th minute.
It was the third straight game in which Real Madrid has been left with ten men on the field after Adan’s ejection at Real Sociedad and Sergio Ramo’s midweek ejection against Celta.
Ronaldo’s absence was clearly evident as Real Madrid struggled to find the back of the net against Osasuna’s defense.
Meanwhile, Patrick Ebert scored two goals and an assist to lead Valladolid to a 3-1 victory over Mallorca, 3-1.
The German fired the hosts into the lead with a wonderful strike from 20 yards after 21 minutes but Mallorca were level before half-time as Victor rose to head home Javier Arizmendi’s cross 16 minutes later.
Ebert’s cross paved the way for Oscar Gonzalez’s goal in the 88th minute before the German striker capped the victory with a score in extra period.
In other game, Sergio Garcia’s first-half goal was enough to hand Espanyol a crucial three points with a 1-0 win over Celta Vigo.
The former Spain international gave the hosts the perfect start as he tapped home Christian Stuani’s cross from close range after 23 minutes to help Espanyol moved out of the Primera Division relegation zone.
Celta Vigo had several chances to tie the game but headers by Vadim Demidov and Iago Aspas failed to find their mark en route to their fourth loss in five games.