A new first división matchday has ended with a weekend with few goals, but with the excitement of LaLiga always latent. In this case, the fifteenth matchday of the top flight of Spanish football has brought three protagonists for this new edition of LaLiga Overtime: João Félix, Sergio Herrera and Chadi Riad.

LaLiga Overtime – Matchday #15:

And João Félix appeared:

The big game this weekend was the clash between FC Barcelona and Atlético de Madrid. A clash between two of the favourites to win the domestic title had a clear protagonist: João Félix. The figure of the Portuguese player set fire to a duel with several crosses of statements from both sides.

Griezmann and Saúl pointed out the attitude of the now Barça ’14’. João, neither short or lazy, responded that the problem wasn’t only his. Everything was set for the duel, with Atlético in a better dynamic, while in Barcelona the name of Rafa Márquez was flying around with Xavi under discussion after the recent results.

And, as if it were a Hollywood blockbuster, where you know what is going to happen (like the Marvel movies lately), the Barça-Atlético game was decided like a scripted movie. João Félix’s goal, which he celebrated effusively, in what was the most important match of his season.

The claim in front of the players and coach with whom he didn’t gel. A goal that can definitely open the jar of essences of the Portuguese who, now, is in the right place.

Sergio ‘The Saint’ Herrera:

Sergio Herrera hasn’t had a great start to the season. After a season in which he defended the Reds’ goal with distinction, the performance of the goalkeeper from Miranda de Ebro has declined. His dates are a drama: he is among the five worst goalkeepers in goals saved and saves. However, the game against Real Sociedad was enough to reclaim his status.

This weekend at El Sadar Stadium, Herrera was reincarnated as one of the best goalkeepers in history with an anthological save. In an extreme demonstration of reflexes, the goalkeeper of the team coached by Jagoba Arrasate made the save of the season that will be difficult, almost impossible, to beat.

A double save that will remain etched in the memory of all the spectators present. First an erroneous clearance, left in the centre of the area, to Takefusa Kubo‘s long-range shot, which he would turn into an art. Former Osasuna player Mikel Merino‘s header was met with a sublime response.

As if he were a feline, Herrera rose to his feet at lightning speed and repelled Merino’s header. A brutal save that allowed Osasuna to earn a valuable point against their Basque neighbours and for Sergio Herrera to regain his confidence. It was therefore a must for him to feature in this week’s LaLiga Overtime.

We need to talk about Chadi:

Betis visited Almería in one of the Andalusian derbies of First Division. A favourable place for ‘The Verdiblancos’, who were playing against the only team in the five big leagues without a win after four months of competition. A match to get three points and have fun, which was quickly complicated by the sending off of Héctor Bellerín.

Down to one for the entire game, Almería laid siege to Betis in search of their first win of the season. At that moment, the figure of Chadi Riad appeared as commander of the defence of the thirteen stripes with an imperial performance, another one. The Moroccan centre-back is one of the revelations of the season at the heart of the defence.

As Guillermo Jiménez, NBA commentator in Spain, would say: “We have to talk about Kevin”, although in our case, “we have to talk about Chadi”, deserving protagonist of LaLiga Overtime this matchday.

Riad is making his debut in the first division after a great season with FC Barcelona’s second team, and the Moroccan’s performance is surprising all and sundry. Following the departure of Luiz Felipe to Saudi Arabia, there was a gaping hole in the centre of Manuel Pellegrini‘s side.

Despite the pressure, Chadi Riad is exceeding all expectations and, at this rate, we will be talking about Chadi for a long time to come.

Translated by Marcos Rodríguez.

Main image: Edit Pablo Benítez.


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