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Sunday, 8 April 2012

Real Madrid 0-0 Valencia

Guaita avoids Real Madrid victory; referee fails to award two penalties to the Whites

Fernando Porrero / Translation by Michael J. O'Donnell

Despite doing their best throughout the encounter Real Madrid were unable to defeat Valencia, partly due to an excellent performance by Guaita and a bad performance from the referee, who failed two award to penalties in favour of the locals. Casillas also made some excellent saves in solid Valencia chances, but the Madridistas were superior overall and, despite the draw, remain leaders in the league.
Albiol and Khedira made the starting eleven, the former replacing the suspended Sergio Ramos. Ronaldo, Higuain and Benzema played together once more and created danger for the visitors early on with a turned shot from the Portuguese that missed the mark by inches (3'). Ronaldo forced Guaita to clear a shot four minutes later and Valencia started to react and create danger for Casillas. Ronaldo had the best chance of the first half with a shot inside the box that Guaita saved again (18').

Emery's men could have taken the lead when Ricardo headed the ball to one of the posts (24'), and nine minutes later Casillas miraculously cleared a Piatti shot from inside the area. The match became a tight affair just before half-time.

Di Maria came on for Higuain in the second half and made his mark with an impressive assist in the 46th minute that Cristiano used to pull off a crossed shot inside the box that Guaita cleared with the tip of his fingers. Di Maria deepended the Whites' attack and helped create faster transitions, but Valencia were solid in defence and had dangerous counterattacks that resulted in a spectacular shot by Tino Costa that bounced off the top left corner of Casillas' goal (25').

Real Madrid knew they couldn't afford to drop points at their stadium and went all out for a goal. Di Maria had a double chance in the 60th minute that was thwarted again by Guaita. Four minutes later, Benzema controlled the ball and Victor Ruiz grabbed him and brought him down in the area, but the referee failed to award a penalty. With no goals scored yet, Mourinho decided to replace Khedira with Kaka (71').

Guaita made the most amazing save in the match on the 76-minute mark by clearing an impressive Di Maria strike from outside the box. The crowd, who roared in every local effort, had even started to celebrate a strike. The goalkeeper again frustrated a Benzema double chance a couple of minutes later. Valencia started to take advantage of spaces left by Real Madrid in their search of a goal and forced Casillas to make an impressive save on the goal-line.

Madrid tried to the end and the referee again failed to award a penalty when Ronaldo was clearly grabbed and brought down by Victor Ruiz during a set piece. Di Maria had the last chance in the game, but his weak shot was easily grabbed by Guaita.

Real Madrid

  • 1I. CasillasGoalkeeper
  • 17Á. ArbeloaYellow Card
  • 3Pepe
  • 18R. Albiol
  • 12Marcelo
  • 6S. KhediraYellow CardSubstitution Off
  • 14X. Alonso
  • 9K. Benzema
  • 10M. ÖzilSubstitution Off
  • 7C. Ronaldo
  • 20G. HiguaínSubstitution Off


  • 21J. CallejónSubstitution On
  • 11E. Granero
  • 8KakáSubstitution On
  • 22Á. Di MaríaYellow CardSubstitution On
  • 15Fábio Coentrão
  • 19R. Varane
  • 13A. Adán
José Mourinho


  • 13V. GuaitaGoalkeeper
  • 20Ricardo Costa
  • 4A. Rami
  • 18V. Ruiz
  • 17J. Alba
  • 21D. ParejoYellow Card
  • 5M. Topal
  • 8S. FeghouliSubstitution Off
  • 24Tino CostaYellow Card
  • 14P. PiattiSubstitution Off
  • 11A. AdurizSubstitution Off


  • 12A. Barragán
  • 19P. HernándezSubstitution On
  • 22J. MathieuSubstitution On
  • 7Jonas
  • 3H. Maduro
  • 9R. SoldadoYellow CardSubstitution On
  • 1Diego Alves
Unai Emery

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