Rijkaard battles to avoid end of his era
Saturday 22 March 2008
As one Dutch manager feels the axe lift from his neck, another one is back on the chopping block in Spain. Ronald Koeman's controversial reign at Valencia looks to be on firmer ground after reaching the King's Cup final late on Thursday night; but Frank Rijkaard, whose Barcelona team lost the semi-final, return to league action this weekend, with victory at home to Real Valldolid imperative tomorrow.
Rijkaard and Juan Laporta, the club president, were sanguine yesterday, arguing the club can still win the Champions League, but the local sports press declared the end of an era. Barça remain seven points behind Real Madrid, despite the latter's faltering form. The leaders are at home to Valencia tomorrow. Villarreal, two points behind Barcelona, are at doomed Levante.
Athletic Bilbao are expected to field the reserve goalkeeper, Daniel Aranzubia, at home to Getafe, the other King's Cup finalists, tomorrow in place of Armando who was hit by a bottle at Real Betis last week.
Internazionale's seven-point lead in Serie A will be threatened by third-placed Juventus at San Siro today. Patrick Vieira is unlikely to play because of a thigh strain. Roma, in second, are at home to Empoli.
Today's key game in the Bundesliga pits leaders Bayern Munich against Bayer Leverkusen, in third. Rafael van der Vaart, captain of second-placed Hamburg, has promised team-mates an unusual bonus. He will wash their cars if Hamburg, at Wolfsburg today, win the league.
Harry Potter actor suffered 'severe flu-like symptoms' on a flight from London to Orlando
First full-length look is finally here
World cities ranked in terms of safety, food security and 'liveability'
Latest in Sport
Brooklyn Beckham poses in Arsenal training kit following rumours of signing for the Gunners
Manchester United transfer news and rumours: David De Gea could leave for FREE; £38m for Marquinhos; £37m bid for Mats Hummels;
Transfer news LIVE: Manchester United to make £37m Mats Hummels bid; Inter plan Yaya Toure move; Shola Ameobi joins Crystal Palace
Australian Open 2015: Novak Djokovic vs Stan Wawrinka match preview
Danny Ings to Liverpool: The Reds attempt to steal a march on rivals in race to sign Burnley striker
- 2 The awkward moment Sarah Palin raised $25,000 for Hillary Clinton's election campaign
- 3 Ball pool for adults opens in London
- 4 Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
- 5 Baldness could soon be treated using stem cells, scientists hope
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures