Almeria drowns Real Madrid
Impressive Almeria continues their winning run by upsetting the Whites.It takes them to seventh in La Liga.
Unai Emery's men deservedly win in the clash that saw two teams who were unbeaten in the past few games. Real Madrid came to Estadio de los Juegos MediterrÃ¡neos wanting to extend their winning streak but has been over-run by the motivated minnows of Andalusia.
Raul almost scored in the 5th minute when his amazing lob landed on the roof of the goal. But that didn't stop Almeria from sniffing the Los Merengue box.
Juanito struck in the 16th minute from a set-piece and Bernd Schuster knew it wasn't going to be easy. Alvaro Negredo and Juan Ortiz showed no mercy to their former club.
It was evident that Emery had instructed his players to press and make it tight for the creative mid-fielders. Guti and Robinho were closely marked.
Nistelrooy had a chance off a corner by Guti, but Diego Alves saw it coming and grabbed the ball in the 21st minute. Four minutes later, Robinho clever pass saw Ramos cutting in diagonally in looking for a goal. It was Alves who stopped the Merengue right-back from scoring by clashing into him just outside the box.
Guti's beautifully curved free-kick missed the top right corner by inches.
Almeria grew strong and prevented the Whites from playing any fluid football. Felipo Melo and Mane over shadowed Los Merengues' defence by sheer pace.
Real Madrid looked second best in the first-half and they suffered furthur set-back when Nistelrooy niggled his right ankle. Gonazalo Higuain replaced him in the second period.
Cannavaro pushed Negredo inside the box early in the second-half and the former Castilla player made it 2-0. Ortiz came in for Corona in the 64th minute and Real Madrid sent Baptista for Salgado to sharpen the attack.
The last ten minutes of the game saw Schuster's men push hard with Balboa, Ramos and Raul combining. Raul's header was off-target and it showed that the Los Blancos were clearly ruled over their minds.
Almeria stood their ground firmly, constantly pressing and playing at great pace that Real Madrid was never used to.
The result makes Real Madrid's lead reduced to six points if Barcelona overpowers Osasuna. Almeria stands seventh in the league table now with four successive wins.