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Evening Ticker: Barca edges Atletico in Copa Del Rey; Real Madrid signs 16-year-old Martin Odegaard; and more



It took until the waning minutes of the match Wednesday, but Lionel Messi nabbed a first-leg Copa Del Rey victory for Barcelona over Atlético Madrid.

Atletico goalkeeper Jan Oblak blocked Messi’s penalty kick, but not well enough as Messi rushed forward to knock home the rebound and spark pandemonium at Camp Nou. Messi’s opportunity came from Atletico defender Juanfran Torres fouling Sergio Busquets in front of goal.

Barcelona will now take that opening leg victory to the Vicente Calderon Stadium, where the two teams will meet up for the second leg on Jan. 28.

Here are some more of Wednesday evening’s news and notes:


Norway’s youngest goalscoring professional is heading to Spain.

Real Madrid have signed 16-year-old phenom Martin Odegaard at a reported $3.5 million and will introduce the new player on Thursday, the club said on Wednesday.

Odegaard, who has previously been linked with a who’s who of Europe’s powerhouses, will join Real Madrid from Norway’s Stromsgodset. Odegaard scored five goals in 23 appearances for the Norwegian club and has also been capped three times by his national team


Inter Milan’s January acquisitions of Xherdan Shaqiri and Lukas Podolski paid immediate dividends Wednesday.

Shaqiri opened up the scoring from a Podolski pass, as Inter topped Sampdoria, 2-0, in the Coppa Italia. Shaqiri’s finish came in the 71st minute, as the Swiss star provided a goal in his first start with his new club.

Inter doubled the lead in the 87th minute through Mauro Icardi, whose finish made amends for an earlier penalty kick miss. With the victory, Inter progress to take on either Udinese or Napoli.


On paper, Sheffield United appeared to be overmatched in Wednesday’s Capital One Cup matchup with Tottenham, but the League One side gave Spurs all they could handle.

Tottenham narrowly escaped with a 1-0 victory due to an Andros Townsend penalty kick at White Hart Lane. Townsend’s finish came in the 74th minute after Sheffield’s Jay McEveley was called for a handball in the box.

The two teams will meet up once again for the tie’s second leg Jan. 28 at Sheffield’s Bramall Lane.


The African Cup of Nations continued Wednesday and, although Ivory Coast wasn’t in action, Gervinho has been informed that he will not take part in his team’s next two games.

Gervinho is set to miss out on the rest of the Ivory Coast’s group stage contests after earning a red card for slapping Guinea’s Naby Keita.

“I would like to apologize,” Gervinho said on Twitter, “to the Ivorian nation, to my team-mates, to the supporters and to the organizers of the (AFCON) for this angry gesture which is totally out of character and evidently has no place on a football pitch.”

On the field, Congo upset Gabon with a 1-0 victory behind a Prince Oniangu finish that thwarted Gabon’s opportunity to be the first team to advance to the next round. Meanwhile, Burkina Faso were forced to settle for a scoreless draw with hosts Equatorial Guinea .


What do you make of Wednesday’s results? How will Odegaard fare with Real Madrid? How will Ivory Coast cope without Gervinho?

Share your thoughts below.


      • Typically, a player would get about 10% of the signing fee.

        I’d imagine the kid signed with Real for the chance to train and develop alongside all those top class players. My guess is that is better than signing with the Chivas USA academy( they are still running aren’t they?) but who knows?

        And I assume he will be able to develop any number of revenue enhancing opportunities that tend to come with playing for a team like Real.

        If his “business people” , and I assume he has some, have half a brain they can soon be making this “brand” a lot more money on the side than he maybe will merit earning on the the field, at least for a little while.

        Hopefully, barring a disaster, he will have a lot of time to make up for the paltry 3.5 mil.

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