Featured Matches
Previous
Brazil
Netherlands
0
3
ESPN, ESPN3 FT
Match 63
Game Details
Germany
Argentina
ABC, ESPN3 7:00 PM GMT
Match 64
Game Details
Germany
Argentina
ABC, ESPN3 7:00 PM GMT
Match 64
Game Details
Helsingborg
Gefle IF
1
1
FT
Game Details
Elfsborg
Brommapojkarna
2
2
FT
Game Details
Halmstad
IFK
2
2
FT
Game Details
BK Hacken
Orebro SK
4
1
LIVE 80'
Game Details
Haugesund
Stabaek
2
0
FT
Game Details
Valerenga
Rosenborg
2
2
FT
Game Details
UCD
Sligo
1
0
FT
Game Details
Shamrock
Dundalk
0
1
FT
Game Details
Derry City
Bray
4:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Seattle Sounders FC
Portland Timbers
ESPN2 2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
FC Edmonton
Ottawa Fury FC
10:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Cienciano del Cusco
Juan Aurich
4:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Emelec
Independiente del Valle
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Portland Thorns FC
FC Kansas City
9:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Next
 Posted by ESPN Staff
Jan, 29, 2009

La Liga: Pressure mounting on under-achievers

With Barcelona holding a commanding 12-point lead in the Primera Liga, attention is turning to under-performing clubs such as Real Betis and Atletico Madrid with pressure mounting on their coaches.

Paco Chaparro at Real Betis looks to be most at risk after his side were knocked out of the King's Cup by fellow strugglers Real Mallorca on Wednesday and lie 16th in the league with only six wins all term.

Another failure at home to Getafe on Sunday (1600 GMT) could spell the end for the former reserve team coach, who replaced Hector Cuper in December 2007.

"It was a big blow for all of us," Chaparro said after the 0-0 Cup draw with Mallorca, which condemned Betis to a 1-0 aggregate defeat.

Atletico Madrid's Mexican coach Javier Aguirre has also been feeling the heat.

Atletico have not won since Dec. 20 and are languishing in sixth, nine points behind second-placed Real Madrid even though they have scored more goals than their city rivals.

Midfielder Paolo Assuncao said he understood the fans' unhappiness but said Sunday's match at home to Real Valladolid (1600) was a chance to put their season back on track.

"The supporters pay their entrance fee so they have every right to complain," the Brazilian said in an interview with Thursday's As newspaper.

"We just have to get the win, whether we're playing badly or playing well. The team is in good shape now and we'll get back to winning ways."

Sevilla coach Manolo Jimenez needs a comeback win in Thursday's King's Cup quarter-final, second leg against Valencia to help dispel any doubts over his future before his side travel to Sporting Gijon for Sunday's league clash (2000).

If they fail to overturn a 3-2 deficit from the first leg in Valencia, their chances of winning a trophy this season will be effectively gone following their exit from the UEFA Cup.

Real Madrid are looking for a sixth straight league win at Numancia on Saturday (2100) to keep alive their slim hopes of catching Barcelona, who play at Racing Santander on Sunday (1600).

Real's Portuguese central defender Pepe said the champions would fight all the way to hold on to their title. "Barcelona is strong and playing some great football but they will have their moment of crisis," he said in an interview with Marca newspaper. "We have to be ready to cut the gap in points when they slip up."

Comments

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.