Football: EUROPEAN PREVIEW - Pressure Builds on del Bosque as Deportivo la Coruna Aim to Extend Real's Run of Misery
Culley, Jon, The Independent (London, England)
WHILE SURPRISE Spanish league leaders Real Sociedad travel to Villareal tomorrow hoping to extend their unbeaten run, Real Madrid are away to Deportivo La Coruna in the top match this evening aware that their crisis must be tackled soon.
Madrid have not won in their last five matches and the Spanish media have not been slow to heap pressure on coach Vicente del Bosque. His expensively- assembled side lost 1-0 at home to Roma in the Champions' League in midweek, despite a full-strength line-up that included Ronaldo, Zinedine Zidane, Luis Figo, Raul and Roberto Carlos.
Deportivo, by contrast, earned a fine 2-1 win at home to Bayern Munich to eliminate the Germans from the competition. Real have Raul doubtful because of illness and Zidane, Figo and Claude Makelele all struggling with injuries.
Champions Valencia moved to second place with a 5-1 demolition of Athletic Bilbao last week and clinched a place in the second phase of the Champions' League with victory over Liverpool at Anfield but Espanyol, to whom they travel tomorrow, have won two out of two since Ramon Moya took over from Juande Ramos as coach.
In Italy, leaders Internazionale make the journey to Como, who are without a win so far, aware that city rivals Milan are eager to reclaim top spot following last weekend's surprise defeat at Chievo.
Inter are set to keep the three-man attack of Alvaro Recoba, Hernan Crespo and Christian Vieri that served them well in the midweek 3-0 Champions' League win over Rosenborg. …