Cadiz 0-0 Barcelona: Koeman pressure intensifies after dismal draw

By Sports Desk September 23, 2021

The pressure on Ronald Koeman intensified after his 10-man Barcelona side were held to a dire 0-0 draw by Cadiz at Estadio Nuevo Mirandilla on Thursday.

Speculation about the Dutchman's future has been rife following a slow start to the LaLiga campaign that had seen Barca drop points to Athletic Bilbao and Granada in their opening four games, while also losing 3-0 to Bayern Munich in the Champions League.

Things did not get much better for the Catalan giants in Andalusia as Cadiz comfortably kept them at bay, with their misery compounded midway through the second half when Frenkie de Jong saw red for two bookable offences.

A point did at least move Barcelona up to seventh – seven points behind leaders Real Madrid, who have played a game more – while Cadiz climbed to 14th.

While Barca did most of the pressing in the early stages, they did not have a shot on target until the 30th minute, Memphis Depay's weak effort comfortably saved by Jeremias Ledesma.

Marc-Andre ter Stegen pawed away Alvaro Negredo's audacious 25-yard effort immediately after half-time, while Depay miskicked with the goal at his mercy at the other end.

Ledesma pushed away Depay's drive from outside the penalty area, before Barca's hopes of getting a positive result were dealt a blow in the 65th minute when De Jong received a second yellow card for following through on Alfonso Espino after initially winning the ball. 

Salvi Sanchez squandered a glorious opportunity inside the final 10 minutes, firing against Ter Stegen after being played in by Espino, with the ball bouncing behind off Ruben Sobrino.

Depay then had an even better chance to steal all three points for the visitors deep into stoppage time, as the Netherlands international clipped narrowly wide after a marauding Gerard Pique carried Barca forward.

Related items

  • Rangers roll out expensive new era with mega deals for stars Seager and Semien Rangers roll out expensive new era with mega deals for stars Seager and Semien

    The Texas Rangers rolled out an expensive but exciting new era with mega deals for star duo Corey Seager and Marcus Semien on Wednesday.

    Texas mean business heading into the 2022 MLB season after splashing out $500million to lure championship winner and World Series MVP Seager, and All-Star Semien to the franchise.

    The Rangers gave free agent Seager – a two-time All-Star and Silver Slugger with the Los Angeles Dodgers – a 10-year contract worth $325million.

    After finishing third in the American League (AL) MVP race following his exploits for the Toronto Blue Jays, Semien signed a seven-year, $175m deal in Texas.

    "How can you not be excited about that?" Seager said. "Not only the elite player, but he's an elite person who carries himself well. He's a great team-mate. There's not a bad word that you can say about Marcus.

    "To be able to learn from somebody who's that talented and to take little things that he does in this game that I might not and be able to bounce off each other and to be up the middle here for a long time, it’s all very exciting."

    Seager led the Dodgers to World Series glory in 2020 with a slash line of .328/.425/.746, while he was .297/.367/.504 as the Los Angeles franchise reached the National League Championship Series (NLCS) before losing to eventual winners the Atlanta Braves in 2021.

    The 27-year-old shortstop finished the season with 16 homers and 54 runs on 108 hits, and 57 RBIs.

    Semien enjoyed a stunning campaign for the Blue Jays, where he played all 162 games and slashed .265/.334/.538 en route to his first All-Star appearance, Silver Slugger and Gold Glove Awards.

    The 31-year-old hit 45 homers – a single-season record for a primary second baseman, to go with 102 RBIs and 15 stolen bases in Toronto.

    Semien finished third in AL MVP voting, behind winner Shohei Ohtani and former Blue Jays team-mate Vladimir Guerrero Jr.

    "Marcus' reputation around the game is impeccable. He's a leader in every clubhouse he steps into, respected for the way he goes about his work and how he treats others," said Rangers president of baseball operations Jon Daniels.

    "There are few players in the game who garner the level of respect that he does from team-mates and opponents alike. We're thrilled to add a player of his calibre to the organisation."

    "We feel that Marcus is an excellent fit for the Rangers organisation from a talent, culture, and leadership standpoint," said Rangers executive vice president and general manager Chris Young. "Beyond his ability as a player, Marcus is an outstanding person who leads by example both on and off the field."

  • Messi pleases PSG boss Pochettino despite drawing blank after Ballon d'Or celebration Messi pleases PSG boss Pochettino despite drawing blank after Ballon d'Or celebration

    Paris Saint-Germain head coach Mauricio Pochettino defended Lionel Messi after the seven-time Ballon d'Or winner fired a blank in Wednesday's 0-0 Ligue 1 draw at home to Nice.

    Messi was honoured pre-game in front of the Parc des Princes crowd following his record-extending Ballon d'Or title, but the superstar was unable to fire PSG to glory in the French capital midweek.

    Entering the contest having found the net three times in as many home games for runaway Ligue 1 leaders PSG, Messi attempted six shots, though only one was on target against Nice.

    It was Messi's highest tally without scoring in the league since April 2021 – seven with Barcelona against Real Madrid in LaLiga prior to his blockbuster Paris switch.

    "It must be my fault because with my football eye I always see Leo well, for something he has won seven Ballons d'Or, there is nothing more to say," Pochettino told reporters.

    "It is a pleasure and an honour to have him on our team."

    PSG registered 22 shots on goal – their highest tally without scoring in Ligue 1 since March 2016, with Angel Di Maria and Kylian Mbappe going closest to finding the back of the net, but were unable to break down their stubborn opponents.

    French powerhouse PSG conceded their first 0-0 home draw in Ligue 1 since February 2017 (against Toulouse). This was their first home draw in the top flight since November 2020 (2-2 against Bordeaux), ending a run of 20 games at home without sharing points (W16 L4).

    PSG, however, remain 12 points clear atop the table, though second-placed Marseille have played one game less.

    "When goals are not scored, what is lacking is to hit the mark, you shoot many times and the ball does not go in and other times it does," added Pochettino, who has been heavily linked with Premier League side Manchester United.

    "We have not been able to take advantage of the opportunities we had, but these things happen once or twice a season when you play well and the goalkeeper or the stick or it goes an inch out. You have to accept this kind of thing."

  • Blue Jays recruit Gausman targeting championship in Toronto Blue Jays recruit Gausman targeting championship in Toronto

    Kevin Gausman joined the Toronto Blue Jays to get his hands on a World Series championship, saying "I want to go somewhere and win" following his blockbuster arrival.

    The World Series-chasing Blue Jays lost American League (AL) Cy Young winner Robbie Ray in free agency but replaced him with All-Star ace Gausman.

    Gausman and the Blue Jays – who heartbreakingly missed out on last season's playoffs despite recording 91 wins – finalised a five-year, $110million contract on Wednesday.

    The 30-year-old Gausman spent two seasons with the San Francisco Giants, where he played a key role in their franchise-best 107-win campaign in 2021.

    "It just made sense the closer it got to decision time. This is the team I think I'm going to win the most with," Gausman said on Wednesday.

    Gausman ended the regular season with a career-high 2.81 ERA as the Giants claimed the best record in baseball after fending off the Los Angeles Dodgers for the National League (NL) West title.

    It was San Francisco's first division crown since 2012, with Gausman boasting a career-high 227 strikeouts prior to the playoffs.

    Gausman finished the year behind only NL Cy Young winner Corbin Burnes in Stats Perform's Strike+ metric, which measures which pitchers rack up both whiffs and called strikes.

    "I feel more confident in myself now than I ever have in my career," Gausman added.

    "It's just about being really good at what you're great at. My command has gotten better, and I just have a better overall feel for who I am and what I need to do to have success."

    Gausman has also spent time with the Baltimore Orioles, Atlanta Braves and Cincinnati Reds in MLB.

    "The impact that pitchers like Kevin can have in an organisation beyond the scope of winning is massive," Blue Jays general manager Ross Atkins said midweek.

    "His experiences, first and foremost his character, his reputation [are] as strong as they come in baseball. So, all that we would ever ask is for him to be himself."

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.