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REVIEW: DEPORTIVO 1 – RACING 1 (LIGA)

12 Apr 2010
New disappointment for a Deportivo that’s saying good-bye to Europe; the Galicians had everything in favour with their quickest goal in the competition, but a late-goal of the Cantabrians meant the draw in a game that the locals never sentenced.

BEFORE THE GAME
No surprises in the starting squads presented by both coaches; Lotina trusted in the couple Riki-Adrián in attack, while Raúl Garcia was making his debut as starter covering the left-back position. Aranzubia was the goalie, Laure performed at the right and the central defenders were Colotto and Lopo. Sergio and Antonio Tomas were at midfield. Juan Rodriguez was the one covering the right wing and Guardado attacked by the left.

At Racing coach Portugal presented the expected 4-2-3-1 formation, with Fabio Coltorti at the goal, and with ex-Depor Pedro Munitis as one of the hopes to assist Mohammed Tchité for the goals. Ex-Depor players Xisco and Pinillos were sited on the bench.

To mention that before the meeting there was a fight in a bar around the stadium, according to the police a group of Racing’ fans were drinking there, and when a group of “radicals” of Deportivo saw them then they started to launch objects into the local, which caused a lot of damage in the bar and one injured person. The fire department and the police had to intervene.

FIRST HALF
Deportivo couldn’t take advantage of the early advantage and ended ceding two points against a naďve rival in defence that never gave up in attack and despite the clear opportunities that the Galicians had to secure the result. It was a vibrant first part between two teams that searched the opposite goal, with Riki as the main actor and with a Racing that never seized its counterattack chances.

The anxiety was easily perceived before the game, Depor was coming after four straight losses and several players were pointing to this game as a “final” or “the most important match of the season”. And what better way to calm that anxiety than with an early goal; because Deportivo scored its goal with just 35 seconds in the clock, which means their quickest goal scored on the season.

It all started with Aranzubia, who had the ball at Depor’s penalty zone, he released a long throw that arrived to the edge of the opposite area, place where Oriol and Iván Sánchez Rico ‘Riki’ were fighting for the ball, but the defender got asleep and the Madrilenian surpassed him entering alone to the area, Coltorti reacted late and Riki had enough time to touch the ball that gently entered to the goal by the right post of the Swiss keeper. It’s his sixth goal in liga.

Suddenly, Depor was having the advantage in the scoresheet, but the players didn’t change their offensive mentality, which opened a lot of cracks at the local defence, something that Racing never capitalised despite their counterattack efforts. For this reason the first half was vibrant, because both sides had enough opportunities to end the half with at least two goals in their tally.

Just two minutes after the goal, Racing had its first clear attempt, this after Diop found a rebound inside the area, but Aranzubia made the save. At minute 5, Munitis seemed to be fouled inside of Depor’s area, but Mateu Lahoz didn’t whistle anything.

The formula of Lotina with Riki and Adrian was working out, the Asturian didn’t have clear opportunities, while the Madrilenian was clearly the most dangerous man on the pitch. What happened was that Adrian was acting delayed on the pitch and was the one assisting his partner. Actually it was the ex-Oviedo attacker who fed Riki during the two clearest opportunities to increase the difference.

First, at minute 17, Adrian assisted the ex-Getafe played and he fired a rocket from the edge of the area, but Coltorti cleared the ball. Then, at the 24th minute, the same Riki fired again from the edge of the area after collecting a pass from Adrian, this time it was a drilling shot that hit the right post of the visiting goalie, who made a small deflection before the ball hit the wood. The resulting corner-kick was taken by Sergio and Colotto was fouled when he was attempting to head the ball, but again Mateu Lahoz didn’t whistle anything.

Five minutes later the same Riki scored through a crossed shot that bet Coltorti, but the assistant indicated a doubtful offside that was protested by the fans. Those 30 minutes were the best of Depor in the game, after this play Racing had a couple of chances to tie the actions before half-time, but they failed. Starting with Tchite, who was assisted by Munitis during a counterattack for the visitors, but the African striker sent a easy shot that was stopped by Aranzubia (32’), later Arana took a free-kick on target, Aranzubia cleared the danger, but the ball arrived to Colsa, who headed the ball passing near to the post (40’).

SECOND HALF
The second part was slower, but it kept the same script of the first, with Depor having the occasions and with Racing lost on the pitch, something that changed with the entry of Ivan Bolado and Xisco, which gave a sense of danger to the attacks from the visitors.

Before that, Depor wasted a new opportunity to score the second goal, this time it was Andrés Guardado, the Mexican took advantage of a rebound after a cross of Laure, but his final shot went wide when he was alone inside the area (56’). Then Bolado and Xisco entered for Tchité and Serrano and the visitors now seemed more dangerous.

First a volley from Arana was near to enter (63’) and later Munitis wasted a clear counterattack in which he was alone against Aranzubia, but he preferred to wait to make an assist and in the end never found a receiver (68’). In the middle of both occasions Lotina replaced Antonio Tomas and Adrian with Ivan Perez and Lassad, moves made trying to refresh the attack and have more control at midfield.

But the true is that both modifications were an error, because Lassad never had the same communication had by Adrian with Riki, one of the reasons that explains why the Galicians never completed a shot on target in the second half. Neither Ivan Perez did too much on the pitch, he just appeared once during a counterattack for the locals that ended with a shot hitting a rival (67’).

The key at the end of the half was the final substitution made by both coaches. Lotina replaced Riki with Bodipo, the Madrilenian was the most dangerous man on the game, but his recent injuries forced Lotina to not risk with his health and preferred to take off the only attacker that was creating some danger. At the same time, Portugal replaced Arana with ex-Atletico Toni Del Moral, who in the end scored the equalising goal seven minutes before the final whistle.

It was after Munitis sent a long cross from the right, the ball reached the far post, just where Lopo was covering Toni Del Moral, Aranzubia was in front and somehow the striker managed to overcome Lopo and release a header that bet the Basque keeper. The goal killed Deportivo and Racing even had the chance to win the game with a crossed shot of Xisco, but the ex-Depor missed the target (87’). Lassad had the last chance of the evening after receiving a cross from Laure, but also missed the target (89’).

AFTER THE GAME
Unlucky draw for a Deportivo that scored its quickest goal on the season and that could have deserved more due to the opportunities had in the first part, but at the same time the result could be considered as fair as the Galicians never knew how to define the game, while Racing grew up in the final stage of the match to reach the equaliser. Riki was the best man on the game as he was the most dangerous man on the pitch, while Raul had a decent debut as starter as he seemed calmed and even participating in attack.

However, the result should be understood as a negative one and as the last nail in the coffin of Depor’s dream to qualify to Europe. Because all the direct rivals of Deportivo won their games (Sevilla, Mallorca, Getafe and Athletic Bilbao), actually Depor is now 8th in the table, five points below the 6th place and eight away from the Champions League zone. To make things worse on Wednesday Depor is going to visit the powerful Barcelona FC (22h00 CET)
 
MATCH STATISTICS
Deportivo: Aranzubia – Laure, Colotto, Lopo, Raúl –Juan Rodríguez, Antonio Tomas (Iván Pérez 63’), Sergio, Guardado – Riki (Bodipo 81’), Adrián (Lassad 67’).
Racing Santander: Coltorti  Crespo, Oriol, Torrejón, Cristian – Arana (Toni Moral 68’), Colsa - Diop, Serrano (Xisco 57’), Munitis – Tchité (Bolado 57’).
Referee: Antonio Miguel Mateu Lahoz. He showed yellow card to Oriol (89’)
Goals: 1-0: (1’) Riki, 1-1: (83’) Toni Moral
Venue: Riazor (16,000)
Other statistics: Ball possession (46% - 54%); Total shots (16 - 14); Shots on target (3 - 5); Saves by the keepers (4 - 2); Corner-kicks  (9 - 7); Offsides (5 - 3); Fouls committed (10 - 17); Accuracy in the passes (68.87% - 77.05%)

* RESULTS & STANDINGS

ARCHIVE NEWS APR/10

ZAPPING

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