Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : April 22nd 2014 Contents A51
• Twitter: @GuardianTT • Web: guardian.co.tt
BUENOS AIRES---River Plate moved
into top spot in the Argentine first di-
vision with a 1-0 win over Velez Sars-
field on Sunday.
Teofilo Gutierrez scored in the 30th
minute, taking advantage of a mistake
by Velez keeper Sebastian Sosa. Sosa s
poor goal kick wound up at the feet of
the Colombian, who slotted home
from close range.
River improved to 27 points from 15
Colon drew 0-0 with Belgrano and
Racing won 1-0 at Argentinos Juniors
in other matches Sunday.
River s victory may have been costly.
Gutierrez went off in the 62nd with
an injured right knee, and fellow
Colombian Eder Alvarez Balanta left a
few minutes later with an injured
Gutierrez said he hoped to be back
on the field quickly.
"Thanks to God and the team, we are
where we are," said Gutierrez, who
dedicated the victory to his grand-
mother in Colombia.
River Plate moves into top spot in Argentina
MADRID---Jose Mourinho finds himself
in the Champions League semifinals once
again, although Atletico Madrid hopes to
make sure the Portuguese manager fails
to progress from this stage for the fourth
season in a row.
Mourinho s Chelsea plays at Atletico s
Vicente Calderon Stadium today with its
domestic title hopes floundering following
a 2-1 loss to last-place Sunderland on Sat-
urday. Atletico, meanwhile, secured an
eighth straight victory to move within three
wins of its first league title since 1996.
Mourinho made it as far as the semifinals
twice during his previous spell with the
Blues before guiding Inter Milan to the title
in 2010. Since then, he has three straight
visits to the semifinals with Real Madrid,
losing each time.
Chelsea faces the only unbeaten club,
with Atletico having stifled Barcelona and
AC Milan to make its first semifinal since
Here are some things to know before the
first match of the two-legged series:
WELCOME BACK JOSE: Atletico coach
Diego Simeone would like to pick up where
he left off against Mourinho, following the
latter s time in Spanish football. Mourinho
won two trophies in three seasons at Real
Madrid, but capped his worst season as a
football coach with a loss to Atletico in the
Copa del Rey final last year.
That stinging defeat helped send Mour-
inho back to Chelsea and propelled Atletico
on its improbable run that has it on the
verge of becoming the first Spanish club
apart from Real Madrid or Barcelona to lift
the Spanish title since Valencia did in 2004.
"We re not identical but we re similar
(teams)," Simeone said. "Strong defensive
work and direct play. Good on set-pieces.
These are the qualities that got us here."
HAZARD, ETO O OUT: Chelsea is with-
out two of its attacking weapons for the
first leg as Eden Hazard and Samuel Eto o
were left out of the squad on Monday due
to injury. Hazard has not recovered from a
calf injury sustained against Paris Saint-
Germain on April 8 and, Eto o has "a minor
Goalkeeper Petr Cech returns after miss-
ing the loss to Sunderland due to illness,
while right back Branislav Ivanovic is sus-
pended for the first leg.
TURAN RETURNS: Atletico s attack
received a major boost with the news that
playmaking midfielder Arda Turan will be
available against Chelsea. The Turkey inter-
national has been sidelined by a groin injury
since a 1-1 draw at Barcelona in the opening
leg of the quarterfinals.
Turan s return will aid Atletico s attack
with Spain playmaker Koke having been
forced to be the main provider for striker
Diego Costa. Diego Costa scored his 27th
league goal in Atletico s 2-0 win over Elche
on Friday to take his season tally to 35 in
STELLAR DEFENSE: While much of
Atletico s success can be attributed to the
boot of striker Diego Costa, its defense has
not only been Spain s best but Europe s too.
Atletico has stifled opponents such as
Lionel Messi and Mario Balotelli with ease
and has conceded a competition-low five
goals. While centrebacks Miranda and Diego
Godin have been superb this season, goal-
keeper Thibaut Courtois has been outstand-
ing without a dip in form.
Atletico will be counting on the 21-year-
old Belgium international against his mother
club after UEFA ruled that Courtois could
not be left out of the series due to any pre-
agreed contractual agreements with Chelsea
over his loan deal. "We re not worried about
this matter," Simeone said.
TORRES RETURNS: Chelsea striker Fer-
nando Torres will likely face Atletico amid
increasing speculation he could return to
his boyhood club for good before next sea-
Torres spent the first six years of his pro-
fessional career at Atletico, captaining the
team before leaving for Liverpool in 2007.
His career has stalled at Chelsea since his
50 million pound (then $81 million) move
there in 2011, and the prospects of an emo-
tional return to Atletico were raised after
comments by coach Diego Simeone last
Torres has found playing time fleeting of
late but could feature after Eto o was left
out due to injury. "We ll see how the fans
treat him, I m sure with tenderness," Koke
said, "but we hope he doesn t have a good
game if he does play."
Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho watches the
English Premier League soccer match against
Sunderland on Saturday. Sunderland won the
match 2-1. AP PHOTOS
Atletico looks to
Chelsea's Ramires, left, tries to dribble past Sunderland's Jack Colback during their English
Premier League soccer match at the Stamford Bridge ground, London, Saturday.
Links Archive April 21st 2014 April 23rd 2014 Navigation Previous Page Next Page