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Santa Cruz shoots Malaga into CL last eight

Roque Santa Cruz

Roque Santa Cruz

Roque Santa Cruz led the way for loaned out Blues this week, scoring Malaga’s second goal against Porto to fire the Spanish side into the quarter finals of the Champions League.

The Paraguayan striker made it 2-0 on Wednesday night to give his team a 2-1 win on aggregate, and book a difficult tie against Borussia Dortmund in the next round.

He followed it up with 90 minutes in La Liga at the weekend, although Malaga couldn’t sustain their performance levels and lost 2-0 to Espanyol.

Elsewhere, it was a mixed week for City players hoping to see action with their loan clubs.

Eirik Holmen Johansen continued a good start with Scunthorpe, chalking up another 90 minutes for the Iron in their narrow 1-0 loss to Notts County.

Eirik Johansen

The young Norwegian keeper has been busy impressing his teammates though. Winger Mark Duffy told the Scunthorpe Telegraph: "From what I've seen of the keeper, he's unbelievable.

"Some of the saves he makes in training are just outrageous.

"I hope he takes that into the games because he could have a big effect on the end of the season.”

Scunthorpe are aiming to avoid relegation from League One.

In Scotland, Ryan McGivern completed another 90 minutes for Hibernian in a 4-1 loss away to Motherwell. The young defender has also been named in the Northern Ireland squad for their World Cup qualifiers against Russia and Israel.  

In the Championship, Wayne Bridge recovered from injury to play a full game in Brighton’s 3-0 victory over Crystal Palace to boost promotion hopes at the Amex Stadium.  

Another City loanee, Alex Nimely, was unable to feature for Palace because he remains sidelined with a hamstring injury.

jeremy helan

Elsewhere in the division, Jeremy Helan featured for 68 minutes as Sheffield Wednesday went down 2-0 to league leaders Cardiff, and Karim Rekik was an unused substitute for Blackburn Rovers against both Millwall and Burnley this week.

Dropping down to League Two, and Adam Drury managed the full 90 minutes for Burton Albion in midweek as they beat Aldershot 2-1. He returned to the bench for the weekend’s draw with Dagenham and Redbridge, but did come on for the last 15 minutes.

Alex Henshall was an unused sub once again as Chesterfield saw off Oxford United.

On the continent, Omar Ellabdellaoui chalked up another 90 minutes for German side Eintracht Braunschweiger in their 1-0 win over Bochum, and Mohammed Abu recovered from last week’s injury to play a full game for Lorient as they won 4-0 against Brest in Ligue 1.  

The Norwegian season has finally kicked off for Abdi Ibrahim and Stromsgodset. The midfielder played a full 90 minutes as his side got their campaign off to a flying start with a 2-0 home win.

Luca Scapuzzi was an unused sub for Varese in their 0-0 Serie B draw with Spezia.


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