Sean Teale to Star in Left Bank Pictures and Netflix’s New Spain-Set Series “Palomino”

Sean Teale has a new project in the works…

The 29-year-old part-Venezuelan and part-Spanish British actor has been cast as the male lead in Left Bank Pictures and Netflix’s new Spain-set series Palomino (working title).

Sean TealeTeale joins lead Evin Ahmad in the eight-part thriller series set in the suburbs of Barcelona. Filming is underway.

Teale previously starred in Little VoiceThe Gifted and Reign.

Ahmad plays British teacher Erin Carter, who is caught up in a brutal supermarket robbery and finds her life threatening to unravel as one of the robbers claims to recognize her. Erin then must fight to clear her name and protect her family, but questions linger as to whether she is really who she claims to be.

Teale, who will next be seen in 20th Century’s feature Rosaline with Kaitlyn Dever, will play Erin’s Spanish husband Jordi who works as a nurse at the local hospital. As the series progresses, Jordi starts to question his past, as well as his marriage.

The Left Bank production is written by Jack Lothian. EPs are Lothian (EP and showrunner), Rob Bullock and Andy Harries. Series producer is Nuala O’Leary and lead director is Iram Haq.

Carlos Alcaraz Defeats Casper Ruud to Become Youngest Miami Open Champion

It’s a win for the history books for Carlos Alcaraz

The 18-year-old Spanish tennis phenom and No. 14 seed defeated sixth-seeded Casper Ruud of Norway 7-5, 6-4 in Sunday’s final, giving Spain its first ever Miami Open men’s champion.

Carlos Alcaraz

By claiming the first ATP Masters 1000 career title of his career, Alcaraz also becomes the youngest champion in the event’s history.

Alcaraz wasn’t even in the top 100 in the ATP Rankings at this time last year, but he now heads into the clay-court season playing as strongly as any other player.

“I love Miami,” Alcaraz said.

The melting pot city of Miami — with its massive Spanish-speaking community — loved him back, and Alcaraz said that made a big difference throughout his two-week stay.

“I felt like I was home from the first minute I began playing,” Alcaraz said.

He became the youngest champion in Miami Open history — Novak Djokovic was 19 when he won the tournament, then the NASDAQ-100 Open, for the first time — and picked up $1,231,245 for the victory, nearly doubling his career earnings with one check.

The shot-making ability from the Spanish teen was on full display: daring drop shots in tense situations, deft touch at the net when needed, raw power from the baseline when warranted. Alcaraz often would look to his team in the stands and give a joyous yell or a knowing fist-pump, clearly feeling more comfortable as the afternoon went along.

Among those there with him: his coach, Juan Carlos Ferrero. He had been away while mourning the death of his father, but made it back to Miami in time for the final. And when the match was over, Alcaraz hopped into the stands to give Ferrero his first hug as a Miami champion, as his coach wiped away tears.

“It’s pretty amazing to share this with you,” Alcaraz told Ferrero.

There had been four other Spanish men to make the final at what now is called the Miami Open — the tournament has changed names a few times over the years — over the last quarter-century. Sergi Bruguera was the first, in 1997. Carlos Moya was next, in 2003. David Ferrer got there in 2013 and the best player of them all, Rafael Nadal, made it to the Miami final in 2005, 2008, 2011, 2014 and 2017.

They all lost. Every time.

Alcaraz ended the drought and did so with authority.

He ripped a crosscourt forehand for a double-break lead of 3-0 in the second set. Ruud broke back for 3-1, and had a chance at setting up another breaker late in the set.

With Alcaraz hitting a second serve at 4-3, 30-30, Ruud guessed the incoming ball’s path correctly and ran around his backhand to try what would have been a down-the-line winner. He put it just wide, and a point later Alcaraz was up 5-3. Before long, it was over.

“You’re such a good player already,” Ruud told Alcaraz during the trophy ceremony. “You’re so young and if you continue like this you will stand there many more times. I’m sure of it.”

Alcaraz lost one set in six matches in Miami, improved to 18-2 overall this year and became the third-youngest winner of any ATP Masters 1000 series event — which goes back to 1990. The only younger winners: Michael Chang and Nadal.

“For me, he’s one of the top four people that you have to talk about at every major now, along with Djokovic, Nadal and (Daniil) Medvedev,” raved tennis great Martina Navratilova on Tennis Channel after the match. “He’s the fourth one, for me.”

Rankings-wise, both players leave Miami better than ever. Ruud is expected to climb one spot to a career-best No. 7 in the world when the computer numbers are updated Monday; Alcaraz will be a career-best No. 11.

For Alcaraz, the rise has been meteoric. He was ranked No. 133 at this time a year ago.

But he made big jumps — getting to the third round of last year’s French Open as a qualifier pushed him into the top 75, making the US Open quarterfinals got him into the top 50, winning a tournament in Rio de Janeiro in February got him into the top 20, and he leaves Miami flirting with the top 10.

“You’re a great champion … and I hope you return for many years to the Miami Open,” tournament director James Blake told Alcaraz after the match, apologizing for the quality of his Spanish.

Alexia Putellas Claims This Year’s ‘The Best FIFA Women’s Player’ Award

It’s a special third for Alexia Putellas

The 27-year-old Spanish footballer, a midfielder for Barcelona and Spain, has won The Best FIFA Women’s Player award for 2022, marking her third individual award in the last six months.

Alexia PutellasPutellas previously won the Ballon d’Or Feminin in November and was named UEFA Women’s Player of the Year in August.

Chelsea manager Emma Hayes was awarded The Best FIFA Women’s Coach award after a year in which she won the domestic Treble and made it to the Champions League final.

Canada and Portland ThornsChristine Sinclair was awarded The Best FIFA Special award while Chile and Lyon‘s Christiane Endler was awarded The Best FIFA Women’s Goalkeeper award.

“This belongs to everyone,” Putellas said after receiving the award. “I hope we can continue with the same or even more motivations this year and we can be very successful again.

“This is the work of many years. 2021 was perfect. We only hope to finish this year the same way.”

Putellas fought off strong competition from teammate Jennifer Hermoso and Chelsea’s Sam Kerr for Monday’s award — the same two finalists for the Ballon d’Or Feminin.

Putellas helped Barca to a Treble-winning 2020-21 season in which they won the Primera Divsion, the Copa de la Reina and took home the Champions League trophy for the first time in their history.

Meanwhile, several Latina players were named to the FIFA Women’s World XI team, including Endler, Argentina’s Estefania Banini and Brazil’s Marta.

FIFA Women’s World XI
Christiane Endler – Lyon, Chile
Lucy Bronze – Manchester City, England
Wendie Renard – Lyon, France
Millie Bright – Chelsea, England
Magdalena Eriksson – Chelsea, Sweden
Estefania Banini – Atletico Madrid, Argentina
Carli Lloyd – NJ/NY Gotham, United States
Barbara Bonansea – Juventus, Italy
Vivianne Miedema – Arsenal, Netherlands
Marta – Orlando Pride, Brazil
Alex Morgan – San Diego Wave, United States

Roberto Bautista Agut Helps Lead Spain Into ATP Cup Final

Roberto Bautista Agut has helped send his country to the ATP Cup final…

The 33-year-old Spanish professional tennis player clinched Spain‘s spot in the ATP Cup final with a 7-6 (6), 2-6, 7-6 (5) victory over Poland‘s Hubert Hurkacz on Friday.

Roberto Bautista Agut

In the opening singles match, Pablo Carreno Busta gave Spain the advantage with a 6-2, 6-1 win against late replacement Jan ZielinskiKamil Majchrzak went 3-0 for Poland in the group stages but was forced into isolation due to a positive COVID-19 test.

Russia and Canada will meet Saturday to play for the other spot in Sunday’s final.

Two years ago, Bautista Agut played a leading role during Spain’s run to the final, which Serbia won. Bautista Agut has won all four of his matches at No. 1 singles in this tournament to lead the way for the two-time finalists.

“It’s a match I’ll always remember. Both of us could have got the win today,” Carreno Busta said. “This is our game, this is tennis, and today I was the one who got the win.”

Majchrzak, who is experiencing minor symptoms from his illness, announced his positive COVID-19 test moments before he was due to step on court to face Carreno Busta.

Hurkacz saved five match points before finally succumbing to Bautista Agut.

“Sometimes you get the win on the first [match] point. He played two or three lines in a row, but sometimes you stay focused like today, you keep working, and finally you lose the tiebreak,” Bautista Agut said. “But today I kept working and I got the win.”

Pablo Carreno Busta Helps Lead Spain Into ATP Cup Semifinals

Pablo Carreno Busta has helped lead Spain into the next round of the ATP Cup.

The 30-year-old Spanish professional tennis player defeated Filip Krajinovic 6-3, 6-4 to secure an ATP Cup semifinal spot for Spain.

Pablo Carreno Busta Meanwhile, Roberto Bautista Agut completed the group-stage victory over Serbia with a 6-1, 6-4 defeat of Dusan Lajovic later Wednesday in the second of the singles matches.

Spain only needed to win one of the three matches against Serbia to top Group A and set up a semifinal against Poland.

Carreno Busta got the job done in 80 minutes, registering his third singles win of the round-robin stage.

“It was the best match of the group,” Carreno Busta said in a post-match interview. “I am close to 100%. Today I played very well, very aggressively, very solid. I feel very comfortable on court, so it is going well.”

Spain dropped only one set on its way to victories over Chile, Norway and Serbia, the 2020 champions.

Chile’s 2-1 win over Norway in the day session meant Serbia needed to sweep Spain to advance.

Alejandro Tabilo beat Viktor Durasovic 6-1, 6-7 (5), 6-1 to give Chile the lead before No. 8-ranked Casper Ruud leveled it for Norway with a 6-4, 6-1 win over Christian Garin.

Tabilo and Tomas Barrios Vera clinched the doubles 6-0, 6-4, giving Chile a 2-1 record in the round-robin stage and leaving Norway 0-3.

Poland reached the semifinals for the first time when No. 9-ranked Hubert Hurkacz beat Argentina‘s Diego Schwartzman 6-1, 6-4 following Kamil Majchrzak‘s 6-3, 7-6 (3) win over Federico Delbonis.

Poland finished the round-robin stage 3-0 in Group D, also beating Georgia and Greece.

“I’m so happy for our team. We’re in the semis, so super proud of that achievement,” Hurkacz said. “We have great team spirit. We support each other. I think the atmosphere that we bring helps us play better.”

Greece picked up its first victory with a 2-0 win over last-place Georgia.

Abner Benaim’s “Plaza Catedral” Makes Oscars Short List in International Feature Film Category

Abner Benaim is celebrating a special first for Panama…

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has unveiled its shortlist of 15 films that will advance to the next stage of voting in the International Feature Film category at the Academy Awards, with the 50-year-old Panamanian filmmaker’s latest film making the cut.

Abner BenaimBenaim’s thriller Plaza Catedral becomes the country’s first film to make the short list.

Starring Ilse Salas, Xavier de Casta and Manuel Cardona, explores the relationship between a melancholy divorcee and a poor street child.

As a co-production between Panama, Mexico and Colombia, it’s Benaim’s second fiction feature film after his 2009 comedy Chance.

But Benaim’s Plaza Catedral isn’t the only Latin film making the short list…

Mexico’s Prayers For The Stolen, directed by Tatiana Huezo, and Spain’s The Good Boss, directed by Fernando León de Aranoa and starring Javier Bardem, have also made the cut.

Academy members from all branches were invited to participate in the preliminary round of voting and must have met a minimum viewing requirement to be eligible to vote in the category.

In the nominations round, Academy members from all branches are invited to opt in to participate and must view all 15 shortlisted films to vote.

Nominations voting begins on January 27, 2022, and concludes on February 1, 2022. They will be announced on February 8, 2022 with the ceremony held on March 27.

Here’s the shortlist in full:

Austria: Great Freedom
Belgium: Playground
Bhutan: Lunana: A Yak in the Classroom
Finland: Compartment No. 6
Denmark: Flee
Germany: I’m Your Man
Iceland: Lamb
Iran: A Hero
Italy: The Hand of God
Japan: Drive My Car
Kosovo: Hive
Mexico: Prayers For The Stolen
Norway: The Worst Person In The World
Panama: Plaza Catedral
Spain: The Good Boss

Pedri Wins Golden Boy Award, the Prize Given to Best Young Player in Europe

Pedri is having a golden moment…

The 18-year-old Spanish soccer player, a Barcelona midfielder, has been named the winner of the 2021 Golden Boy award, seeing off competition from Borussia Dortmund and England‘s Jude Bellingham.

Pedri

 

Pedri becomes the first Barca player since Lionel Messi in 2005 to win the prize given to the best young player in Europe.

He succeeds Erling Haaland, who won it last year, with Joao FelixMatthijs de Ligt and Kylian Mbappe also listed among the recent winners.

Italian newspaper Tuttosport, which hands out the award, revealed that Pedri’s winning margin was the biggest ever.

The Spain international collected 318 points from 40 voting journalists, 199 more than second-placed Bellingham.

“I want to thank Tuttosport for this trophy which makes me so proud,” he told the newspaper. “Thanks also to the members of my team and the fans who have always supported me throughout a 2021 which for me has been simply incredible.

“Of course, I want to thank Barcelona, the national side, my family, my friends and everyone who has been with me day-in-day-out without whose help I would not have been able to win the Golden Boy award.”

Pedri has enjoyed a remarkable year. He joined Barca as a 17-year-old from Las Palmas in the summer of 2020 but quickly established himself as a key fixture in the Catalan club’s midfield.

He made 52 appearances in his first season at Camp Nou, winning the Copa del Rey, and playing a major role in Spain’s run to the semifinals at Euro 2020, where he was named Young Player of the Tournament. He made his international debut in March.

A month after the Euros, he was also part of the Spain under-23 team that reached the final of the 2020 Tokyo Games, losing to Brazil after extra time.

Injuries have delayed his progress this season, though. He has made just four appearances for Barca thanks to a thigh problem and is expected to remain sidelined for the next few weeks.

Saul Niguez Headed to Chelsea F.C. On Loan from Atletico Madrid

Saul Niguez is headed to the United Kingdom…

Chelsea F.C. has completed a deal to sign the 26-year-old Spanish soccer player from Atletico Madrid on loan for the season, the two clubs announced on Tuesday.

Saul Niguez

The deal contains an option to buy next summer for a set fee, according to sources.

The deal was thrown into doubt as the transfer hadn’t been confirmed by either club before the midnight CET deadline.

Local media said the delay was caused by a problem with LaLiga‘s transfer registration system, however, and the documentation had been correctly submitted in time.

“We welcome Saul to the Club and believe he completes our squad as we compete for honours in five different competitions this season,” Chelsea director Marina Granovskaia said.

“He is a proven winner, a player with huge experience and we know he will be very well-suited to the challenges that face us on all fronts in the coming year.”

ESPN recently reported Chelsea were in talks with Saul, while Manchester United were also interested in the Spain midfielder, who has spent the last 13 years at Atletico after coming through the club’s youth ranks.

However, United opted against pursuing a deal, leaving the path clear for Chelsea to make their second major signing of the summer after Romelu Lukaku joined from Inter Milan in a €115 million deal.

Earlier in the summer, sources told ESPN, Saul had been offered to Barcelona in a proposed swap deal with Antoine Griezmann but the two parties were unable to agree a deal.

Diego Costa Signs with Brazilian Club Atletico Mineiro

Diego Costa is mining new opportunities…

The 32-year-old Brazilian Spanish soccer player has signed with Brazilian club Atletico Mineiro, with the Spain international player set to return to action after eight months.

Diego Costa,

Costa, a former Atletico Madrid and Chelsea striker, had been without a club since December following his departure from Atletico Madrid after the LaLiga champions agreed to the Brazil-born player’s request to rescind his contract.

It was his second spell at Atletico Madrid, having earlier played for the club from 2010-14.

In the 2013-14 season, Costa helped Atletico to the Spanish title with 27 goals and they also reached the Champions League final but lost 4-1 to rivals Real Madrid in extra-time after Costa was forced off early with a hamstring injury.

Costa joined Chelsea in 2014 and was an instant hit, firing the London club to the 2014-15 and 2016-17 Premier League titles with 20 goals in each campaign.

He returned to Atletico Madrid in January 2018 but injuries limited him to 43 LaLiga starts in three years as he scored 12 goals, and opportunities were further limited by the signings of Joao Felix and Luis Suarez.

The enigmatic striker joins Atletico Mineiro, who defeated second-placed Palmeiras 2-0 earlier on Saturday and extended their lead at the top of Brazil’s Serie A to five points.

Aleix Gomez Helps Lead Spain to Men’s Handball Bronze Medal at Tokyo Games

2020 Tokyo Games

It’s the bronze age for Aleix Gomez

The 24-year-old Spanish handball player scored eight goals to help lead Spain to the bronze medal in the men’s handball tournament at the 2020 Tokyo Games.

Aleix Gomez

Spain equaled its best finish in men’s handball with its 33-31 win over Egypt.

Eight years after winning the world championship on home soil, Spain finally picked up its first Olympic medal since the 2008 Beijing Games, capping a series of tight games that included one-point wins over Germany and Norway in group play and another one-goal win against Sweden in the quarterfinals.

Spain Handball Team

Denmark beat Spain 27-23 in the semifinals.

Spain led 19-16 at the half but never led by that many again. Egypt got its first tie at 21-21 and never got the lead but kept moving back into a tie, with the latest at 28-28 with six minutes to play.

Egypt finally fell behind by two after that but cut it to one once again with 34 seconds to play. Needing a turnover to tie, Egypt instead conceded a goal to Raul Entrerrios with seven seconds left, icing the game for Spain.

Aleix Gomez led Spain with his eight goals.