Luka Modrić scored once again for Real Madrid and helped set up their opening goal on Saturday as Madrid triumphed over Mallorca 5-2. Luka played Pepe through with a near perfect pass in the 14th minute to open up the scoring and took advantage of a poor Mallorca clearance to score his third goal of the season. He received the ball 30 yards from goal, took a touch, and fired a laser into the corner of the net. Luka completed 79 out of 80 passes, and set up four chances, taking the ‘man of the match’ award from many journalists.
Through ball 0:17, Goal 1:30
Ivan Rakitić went the full 90 in Sevilla’s 4-0 drubbing of 10-man relegation contenders Real Zaragoza. Ivan was very involved in the match, creating two chances, firing two shots, and completing 48 passes. The win leaves Sevilla still in the running for the final Europa League spot. With ten matches remaining, they sit in 10th, six points out.
If Everton ever needed a morale boost to make one final push at a Champions League spot, a win over ailing Manchester City would do the trick. And that’s exactly what the Merseyside club got Saturday afternoon. Everton would get on the board in the 32′ when Leon Osman struck from 28 yards out to give the Toffees an early 1-0 lead before having Steven Pienaar sent off in the 61st for a stomp on City’s Javi Garcia. Everton would weather the Manchester attack until Nikica Jelavić came on in injury time, and with his only touch of the game, sent a looping shot from outside the box seconds from the final whistle to earn Everton a 2-0 lead and deserved win over Manchester City. Jelavić only made a cameo appearance, but with the Serbia match four days away, he certainly made one last impression to Croatian manager Igor Štimac. This was Jelavić’s first goal in over two months.
Jelavić strike at 1:55
Mladen Petrić remained on the bench in Fulham’s surprising 1-0 victory over Fulham Sunday at White Hart Lane.
Photo: REUTERS/Morris Mac Matzen
Wolfsburg and Fortuna Düsseldorf split the points in a highly entertaining 1-1 draw. Croatian international, Ivica Olić, started and played the full 90 minutes and scored the equalizing goal in the 51st minute of play. The former Dinamo Zagreb striker made a wonderful cross field run and put the ball past Fabian Giefer and into the back of the net. Ivica scored his fourth goal in his last three matches and will surely make a case to start against Serbia on Friday. Ivan Perišić remains sidelined because of a knee injury.
Ivica Olić goal
Bayern München gave Mario Mandžukić a day off and the former Dinamo Zagreb striker went to Zagreb to watch Cro Cop with Goran Ivanišević while the Bavarian Giants took care of Bayer Leverkusen 2-1 on Saturday night in Leverkusen. Mario Gomez got the start and scored the opening goal for Bayern.
PHOTO: European cy
HSV missed a golden opportunity to move up the Bundesliga ladder and grab that final Champions League spot by suffering a rare 1-0 loss to soon to be relegated Augsburg at home. Former Dinamo Zagreb captain, Milan Badelj started and played the full 90 minutes and wasn’t at fault for the lone goal. The Croatian international could have scored the equalizer early in the game, however, the 24-year-old failed to chip the Augsburg keeper from close range. Should Igor Štimac start Badelj or Ognjen Vukojević at defensive midfielder against Serbia?
Milan Badelj equalizing attempt (0:52)
Ivo Iličević is still out with an abdominal injury. Ivan Klasnić was left off the roster sheet by Mainz in a nil-nil draw at Hoffenheim. Srdjan Lakić came on in the 74th minute for Frankfurt but couldn’t find the equalizer in a 2-1 loss at home to Stuttgart. With the loss, Frankfurt are now winless in six matches but still hold on to the final Bundesliga Champions League spot.
PHOTO: European cy
After a scoreless first half, Werder Bremen and Greuther Fürth scored two goals a piece in a highly entertaining second half. Former NK Zagreb defender, Mateo Pavlović, started and played the full 90 minutes for Bremen in the draw. Mateo was not at fault for either of the two goals and helped set up the equalizing penalty kick as he was brought down in the box in the 70th minute of play. Bremen are trying to stop the bleeding as they are now winless in five.
Pavlović earns penalty kick (1:55)
Vida’s first goal in Ukraine comes off a corner
Domagoj Vida played the full match for Dynamo Kiev Sunday and scored his first Ukrainian Premier League goal in the fourth minute, earning his side a 1-0 victory. Vida found himself in the mix and headed home Yarmolenko’s corner inside 10 minutes. It would be the only goal of the game, moving Dynamo into a tie for second place with Dnipro. Metalist will play their game in hand on Monday. Niko Kranjčar came off the bench in the 66th minute. Should Vida start against Serbia?
Shakhtar Donetsk continued their domination of the Ukrainian Premier League Saturday with a 3-0 win over Chornomorets. Darijo Srna played the full match and assist on Shakhtar’s second goal. Eduardo also received the start before being taken off in the 62′. They currently gold a 16-point lead in the table with only nine matches remaining in the season. Should Dudu be considered for a Starting XI spot vs. Serbia over Olić or Jelavić?
Dnipro missed a huge opportunity to retain sole possession of second place in Ukraine Sunday as they surrendered two second half goals to Kryvbas in a 2-1 loss. Ivan Strinić played the full 90 minutes while Nikola Kalinić came on in the 54′. Kalinić has been quiet in 2013 and needs to start scoring some goals to help earn Dnipro a Champions League berth. Strinić has been playing 90 minutes every week and should be a lock to start at left-back against Serbia on Friday.
Stipe Pletikosa started in net for FC Rostov as they lost 2-1 to Nizhny Novgorod. Stipe should have done better on Nizhny’s first goal, when he was lost and out of position for Artur Sarkisov’s header from a corner kick. He also picked up a yellow card in the 36th minute for kicking the back off of a player he felt was in his way. Rostov are currently one point above a relegation playoff with nine games left to play.
Goal 1:05, Booking 1:20, Goal 2:06
Vedran Ćorluka played the full match for Lokomotiv Moscow in their 0-0 draw with Spartak Moscow. Ognen Vukojević (above) made his second appearance off the bench for his new club, replacing Spartak forward Ari in the 77th minute. Spartak dominated the match with 13 shots and 64% possession leaving Slaven Bilić’s men fortunate to even grab a point. The goalless draw leaves Spartak tied for fourth and Loko in eighth.
Tomislav Dujmović (above in red) started and was subbed off in the 79th minute of Mordovia Saransk’s 1-0 loss to league leaders Zenit St. Petersburg. Mordovia sit in last place, eight points from safety. In an interview after the match, Tomo said he expects the side to stay up this year.
Josip Šimunić must be licking his chops after watching Olympique Lyonnais and Dejan Lovren suffer a 4-1 loss just days before Croatia face Serbia in a World Cup qualifier. Lovren had another one of those days for Lyon. The former Dinamo Zagreb defender was sloppy on defense, getting beat twice down the left side for the second and third goals. Should Igor Štimac start Lovren against Serbia in central defense?
Lovren caught sleeping(1:19), at fault for 2 goals (5:10)(5:45)
Atalanta came back twice but couldn’t do it a third time in a 3-2 loss at Napoli. Marko Livaja came off the bench in the 66th minute for Atalanta but couldn’t find the back of the net in the loss. The 19-year-0ld striker finished the match without a shot. Mateo Kovačić will get a nice little breather as Inter and Sampdoria was called off because of bad weather on Sunday. Pescara registered their fifth straight loss and are now winless in 10 matches after falling to Chievo Verona 2-0 on Sunday. Former Hajduk Split striker, Ante Vukušić started and played 58 minutes in the loss. Ante finished the match with one shot in the loss.
Serbia at Croatia(World Cup Qualifier)
~Ante Kvartuč and Denis Svirčić reporting from sunny Southern California, Zach Gilfix reporting from Minneapolis, MN