Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : December 17th 2014 Contents MADRID---Manchester United
midfielder Ander Herrera has
denied accusations that he par-
ticipated in a match-fixing
scheme while playing in Spain for
former club Zaragoza.
On his Facebook page, Herrera
wrote "I have never had and will
never have anything to do with
manipulating match results. If I
am ever called to testify in any
judicial hearing, I ll be happy to
attend, as my conscience is totally
A complaint filed by a prosecutor
on Monday named Herrera, Atleti-
co Madrid captain Gabriel "Gabi"
Fernandez and Japan coach Javier
Aguirre among players from both
teams and Zaragoza officials for
allegedly fixing Zaragoza s 2-1 win
over Levante on May 21, 2011.
In Spain, match-fixing is a crime
that can lead to prison. (AP)
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Wednesday, December 17, 2014
netted a first-half hat-trick as
Barcelona crushed third-tier
Huesca 8-1 in the Copa del Rey,
while Valencia joined the Cata-
lans in the round of 16 after an
eight-goal thriller with Rayo Val-
Celta Vigo and Almeria also
advanced from a high-scoring
night that saw 24 goals in just four
Despite resting Lionel Messi,
Neymar and several other starters,
Barcelona proved way too much
for Huesca to handle at Camp Nou
and had no remorse about piling
on the agony after winning the
first leg 4-0.
Pedro headed in his first goal in
the 20th and added a second six
minutes later. Sergi Roberto
volleyed in Barcelona s third in the
29th, Andres Iniesta struck in the
39th, and Pedro got his hat trick
two minutes before halftime.
Adriano and Sandro Ramirez
then scored either side of young-
ster Adama Traore s first goal for
Barcelona s first team in the 78th.
Carlos David scored Huesca s
goal following a corner four min-
utes from time, steering the ball
past goalkeeper Jordi Masip on his
debut for Barcelona.
"It is difficult for me to imagine
a better game than this," Barcelona
coach Luis Enrique said.
Barcelona will next play Elche
Valencia twice came back from
a two-goal deficit to draw 4-4
with Rayo and secure a 6-5 victory
Spain striker Paco Alcacer
opened the scoring at Mestalla
Stadium by finishing off a shot
that hit the post in the eight.
Rayo, which had lost 2-1 at
home in the first leg, roared back
with three goals from Jozabed
Sanchez, Alejandro Pozuelo and
Jonathan Pereira by the 38th.
Valencia coach Nuno Espirito
Santo made three changes at half-
time. The payoff quickly arrived
when substitute Pablo Piatti s shot
seconds after the break was turned
into his own net by Rayo defender
Jorge Morcillo to narrow the deficit.
Adrian Embarba put Rayo 4-2
ahead in the 61st, but Alcacer
scored again by slotting home a
rebound that had come off the
upright in the 65th before Rodrigo
Moreno completed the comeback
five minutes later.
Moreno then received a straight
red card for kicking an opponent
in the 82nd, and Valencia managed
to hang on in the final minutes.
"We have earned the right to
believe in ourselves," Espirito Santo
Emotions also ran high in Celta s
3-1 win over Las Palmas, where
the hosts needed Fabian Orellana
to curl in a strike in stoppage time
to secure a 4-3 aggregate victo-
ry.Almeria added to the action
when Jonathan Zongo netted with
a strike from near the halfway line
in a 2-1 win over Real Betis. Alme-
ria advanced 6-4 on aggregate in
coach Juan Ignacio Martinez s first
game in charge. (AP)
...advances 12-1 in Copa
MARRAKECH---Goals from Karim
Benzema and Gareth Bale helped Real
Madrid coast to a 4-0 victory over
Cruz Azul of Mexico yesterday and a
place in the final of the Club World
Sergio Ramos and Benzema made
it 2-0 at halftime, with further strikes
from Bale and Francisco "Isco" Alar-
con putting the result beyond doubt
after the break.
Madrid s opponents in Saturday s
final will be either South American
champion San Lorenzo of Argentina
or Auckland City, a New Zealand team
of amateurs and semi-pros that is
the Oceania champion. They play the
second semifinal on Wednesday, also
in the Grand Stade de Marrakech.
Cruz Azul, the Concacaf champion,
proved no match for the pace and
penetration that Cristiano Ronaldo,
Benzema and Bale provided for
Madrid up front.
Cruz Azul captain Gerardo Torrado
missed a chance to make the score
more respectable when Iker Casillas
saved his first-half penalty that lacked
A win on Saturday would secure
Madrid its first Club World Cup and
cap an exceptional year when it also
won the Champions League and Copa
del Rey, while Ronaldo collected his
second world player of the year award.
"Only a match away from a new
opportunity, we ll be ready 100 per
cent," Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti
said. "I think the team deserves this
Ronaldo did not add to his total of
56 goals in 2014 for Madrid, including
32 this season. But the match was so
comfortable for Madrid that its star
player allowed himself a showboat
second-half shot so cheeky that
Ancelotti s assistants were laughing
behind him on the bench.
Ronaldo tried flicking in Bale s cross
from the left by wrapping his right
foot around his left ankle to connect
with the ball. Cruz Azul goalkeeper
Jose Corona easily scooped up the
attempt that would have been another
fine addition to Ronaldo s highlight
reel had it gone in.
"I ve never seen a shot like this,
but from Ronaldo we have to expect
everything," Ancelotti said.
Conceding that Madrid was "highly
superior," Cruz Azul manager Luis
Fernando Tena had no complaints.
"It s been a joy to play such a skill-
ful team, individually and collectively,"
This was Madrid s 21st consecutive
victory in all matches. Ancelotti s
men have not lost since September
13, a 2-1 defeat by Atletico on day
three of La Liga.
Saturday s final will be Madrid s
last competitive match of 2014. And
what a year: Madrid ended its 12-
year wait for a 10th European Cup
title, beating Atletico 4-1 in the
Champions League final, and lifted
its 19th Copa del Rey with a 2-1 win
In January, Ronaldo broke down in
tears when he picked up the world
player of the year award for 2013. In
the crowd of 34,862 in Marrakech,
some held up signs saying he should
retain the Ballon d Or again this year
against Lionel Messi and Manuel
Neuer, the other finalists.
After a December 30 friendly
against AC Milan, the La Liga leader
picks up its domestic campaign again
on January 4 against Valencia. (AP)
Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo controls the ball during the semifinal football
match between Real Madrid and Cruz Azul at the Club World Cup football
tournament in Marrakech, Morocco, yesterday. Real Madrid won 4-0. AP PHOTO
Real Madrid coasts into
Club World Cup final
scored his 100th goal for Bayern
Munich in a 2-0 victory over
Freiburg yesterday that stretched
his team s unbeaten run to 20
matches in the Bundesliga.
Thomas Mueller added another
goal after the break as coach Pep
Guardiola celebrated his 50th
match in charge with another vic-
tory. Since he took over as coach
last season, Guardiola has six draws
and two defeats to go with 42 wins
in the Bundesliga.
Elsewhere, 10-man Stuttgart
held on for a 1-0 victory at fellow
struggler Hamburger SV, Hannover
beat Augsburg 2-0 and Mainz
drew 0-0 in Cologne.
Stuttgart s second away victory
under new coach Huub Stevens
lifted the team from the bottom
of the table, at least until the 16th
round is completed today.
Robben scored in the 41st after
Xavi Alonso sent a long ball to
Franck Ribery. The Frenchman
nodded the ball down for Robben
and the winger headed home from
Mueller completed the win in
the 48th, with another close-range
header after an effort by Juan
Bernat had crashed off the cross-
"We could have scored a few
more goals but it s good to win,
no matter what the result is,"
Mueller said. "They defended with
five, six men in their area and they
defended well. How many goals
we score is not important, we did
what we set out to do and that
was to win."
Bayern outshot Freiburg 30-2.
"They were so dominant, we
couldn t do anything," Freiburg s
Julian Schuster said.
In Hamburg, Florian Klein cap-
italised on an error by Rafael van
der Vaart to score the winning goal
shortly before halftime and
Stuttgart protected the victory
despite losing Georg Niedermeier
to a red card in the 53rd. Van der
Vaart, the Hamburg captain, fired
against the crossbar from the
ensuing free kick.
Stuttgart rose to 15th, just
behind Hamburg. (AP)
Bayern eases past Freiburg 2-0
PARIS---Nantes rallied from a
two-goal deficit to beat 10-man
Metz 4-2 in extra time and
advance to the quarterfinals of
the League Cup yesterday.
Metz led 2-0 before Oswaldo
Vizcarrondo pulled a goal back
for Nantes with a 71st minute
header. The visitors then crum-
bled under the pressure and Gae-
tan Bussmann was sent off for
a deliberate handball in the box,
with Serge Gakpe converting the
Johan Audel put Nantes ahead
in the 92nd minute with a low
shot before Ismael Bangoura
completed the win.
Bastia also advanced after extra
time in a 3-2 win over fellow
relegation struggler Caen.
The Corsicans trailed 1-0 and
2-1 before equalizing again in
the 89th minute. Benjamin
Mokulu pounced to score the
winner after a scramble in the
Nantes, Bastia reach French League Cup quarters
Ander Herrera denies match-fixing in Spain
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