Morning Ticker: Injuries mount for Real Madrid, Everton lose Yakubu and Riquelme shines

Morning Ticker: Injuries mount for Real Madrid, Everton lose Yakubu and Riquelme shines

European Soccer

Morning Ticker: Injuries mount for Real Madrid, Everton lose Yakubu and Riquelme shines

By

Wesley Sneijder (AP) 

Could things get any worse for Real Madrid?

Perhaps Sir Alex Ferguson succeeded in putting a hex on Ramon Calderon's squad as the reigning La Liga champions are enduring a hell of run of bad luck. First they sell Robinho and score no real replacement, then they lose Ruud van Nistelrooy for the season to a knee injury. Now a trio of injuries to key players threatens to crush Real Madrid's title hopes before Christmas.

Wesley Sneijder, Pepe and Miguel Torres are all out with injuries following the team's recent loss to Getafe. You can add those names to the following players who missed the Getafe match due to injury: Gonzalo Higuain, Arjen Robben, Mahmadou Diarra, Fabio Cannavaro, Gabriel Heinze and Ruben De La Red. That's nearly a full first-team's worth of star talent out.

As if things weren't bad enough, the suddenly fourth-place squad is poised to be severely short-handed for its showdown with FC Barcelona in two weeks. Considering how well Barca is playing these days, things could get real ugly.

And somewhere, Alex Ferguson is laughing.

Here are some other stories from the weekend:

Yakubu out for the season

Everton striker Aiyegbeni Yakubu is out for the season after suffering a torn Achilles early on in Everton's 1-0 win vs. Tottenham. The Nigerian striker played just 10 minutes on Sunday before hobbling off.

Yakubu's injury, coupled with Louis Saha's subsequent hamstring injury has the Toffees scrambling for some attacking help. Look for Everton to go shopping once January rolls around, though it remains to be seen just how much money David Moyes will be given to spend.

Riquelme double keeps Boca in first

Argentine playmaker Juan Roman Riquelme netted a pair of goals to help give Boca Juniors a 2-1 win over Racing Club on Sunday.

Riquelme notched a first-half penalty to open the scoring, then volleyed home the game-inning goal in the second half.

Here are some highlights:

What do you think of the above stories? Is Real Madrid finished? Who do you see Everton buying to replace Yakubu? Will Victor Anichebe step up? Will anybody catch Boca in Argentina? More importantly, do you see Riquelme finishing out his career in Argentina, or will a European club try to bring him back across the pond.

Share your thoughts on these and any other stories from Monday morning or the weekend in the comments section below.

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