Barcelona field 16 year-old in victory over Real Betis
Catalonia also saw success in MotoGP, kayaking and mountain running this weekend
Griezmann nets double against Real Betis as Barcelona field second-youngest ever player
Barcelona romped to their first victory of the season on Sunday as big-money signing Antoine Griezmann got his account underway. Despite missing frontmen Lionel Messi, Luis Suárez and Ousmane Dembele through injury, Barcelona were able to put 5 past their opponents.
Griezmann netted either side of half time, sweeping in an equaliser 5 minutes before the break, and slotting home a superb curled effort 5 minutes after. Carles Perez, aged 21, grabbed his first senior goal soon after, and strikes from Jordi Alba and Arturo Vidal completed the rout.
Barcelona also fielded their second-youngest ever player - Ansu Fati, at 16 years and 298 days old, came on in the second-half and came close to scoring one and assisting Griezmann.
Uncertainty still remains over Neymar’s potential return to Camp Nou. The forward has made it clear that he wants to leave PSG, and has not been part of their squad in either of their matches so far this year. Neymar is said to be willing to take a pay cut, if it means he can return to Barcelona
Espanyol in stalemate with Alavés as Diego López puts on goalkeeping masterclass
Espanyol goalkeeper Diego López rolled back the years at the grand old age of 37, producing two fantastic stops to secure a clean sheet. Alavés, much the better side on the day, will feel hard done by. Meanwhile Espanyol, having underperformed in the first two games of the season, will have to clear out some more cobwebs before Thursday’s Europa League fixture against Zorya.
All-Catalan podium in MotoGP at Silverstone
Àlex Rins edged out reigning world champion Marc Márquez at Silverstone this weekend to take the full 25 points and move up to third in the overall standings. Rins edged out Márquez by 0.013 seconds in an incredibly tight affair. Maverick Viñales followed in third, 0.620 seconds behind the leader, to complete an all-Catalan podium.
Despite missing out on victory, Márquez has increased his lead at the top of the standings. Having amassed 250 points, there is clear daylight between him and his nearest challenger, Andrea Dovizioso, on 172. Dovizioso was taken to Coventry hospital following a huge crash at the start of the race.
Olympic champion Craviotto wins 10th Kayaking World Championships medal
Four-time Olympic medallist Saúl Craviotto led the Spanish K4 to a silver medal at the Kayak World Championships in Hungary, ensuring qualification for Tokyo 2020.
Craviotto, who will be Spain’s flag-bearer in Tokyo next year, almost led his team to victory, finishing 0.51 seconds behind the German team, and 1.70 seconds ahead of the Slovakia quartet in third.
Kilian Jornet misses out on Pikes Peak record despite win
Kilian Jornet’s attempt to break a 26-year-old mountain running record has fallen short. Jornet started quickly but appeared to fall afway on the descent, finishing in 3 hours, 3:16:39, nearly 11 minutes shy of Matt Carpenter’s long-standing record.
Jornet was pleased with his performance, given that, according to the Denver Post, he felt sub-par before the race even started: “Since the warm-up, my legs felt heavy, so I couldn’t push on the uphill like I wanted to.” Although he was considerably short of the record in the end, he ran 13 minutes faster than when he raced at Pikes Peaks in 2012, when he clocked 3:40:26.