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REVIEW: UD ALMERIA 2 – DEPORTIVO 0 (LIGA)

29 Apr 2012
Terrible game of a Deportivo that revived the ghosts of the first round; the Galicians deserved to lose as they practiced a horrible football. The worst part is that Oltra is losing Colotto and Bruno Gama for the final against Valladolid.

BEFORE THE GAME
Both teams presented the expected lineups; Oltra presented a 4-2-3-1 figure with five former Fabril players at the starting formation. Aranzubia was the keeper, Laure performed at the right-back position, Morel covered the left sector at defense, and the central positions were for Rochela and Colotto.

Juan Dominguez and Álex Bergantiños were the two pivotes; Portuguese Bruno Gama attacked from the right wing, his compatriot Diogo Salomão did it from the left, Valerón was the playmaker in the draw and Tunisian Lassad Nouioui was the central attacker.

At Almeria, coach Esteban Vigo was presenting the same formation of the past matchday; with Pichichi Leonardo Ulloa as the main threat in attack, but also with two daggers attacking from the side: Juanma Ortiz and Aleix Vidal.

FIRST HALF
Deportivo revived old ghosts as it left the same poor impression of the start of season when the team was performing away from home. Oltra’s side barely disturbed local goalie Esteban Suárez, though Bruno Gama had a great chance to claim the lead. The worst part was that Almeria only needed one shot on target to score one goal. The Andalusians controlled the action in the first part, but missed punch before Depor’s defense.

The start of the game was intense, though there were no clear scoring opportunities. Within the first fifteen minutes. Almeria was slightly having the ball possession and was trying to push up front, but Deportivo was responding with quick attacks often led by Bruno Gama at the right wing.

Depor’s first approximation came at minute 15; it was a corner-kick of Salomão that Colotto headed at the edge of the area, and later Álex missed to head the ball at the six-yard-box. Both sides were only creating danger through set-pieces, five minutes later the locals scored a goal after a free-kick, but it was disallowed as Jakobsen was in offside position.

Almeria claimed the control of the actions with the pass of the minutes; Depor was relying on the counterattacks, but it was having problems to pass the ball at midfield. The locals were looking more dangerous, though they were also  having problems to break the deadlock of Deportivo.

The first shot on target for the visitors came at minute 25; it was a solo-play of Lassad that ended with Salomão shooting on target from close range, but his attempt was saved by local goalie Esteban Suárez

Depor’s biggest chance in the first half came ten minutes later; it was a counterattack after the clearance of a corner-kick. Bruno Gama was alone before Esteban, but the Portuguese winger couldn’t define the play and his shot hit the body of the goalie and then went to corner-kick. This play could have changed the faith of the game.

Almeria was unable to complete any shot on target within the first forty minutes… until they scored the goal. Álex lost the ball at midfield and the play ended with a combinative play on the right wing between Juanma Ortiz and Rafita; it ended with the defender sending a cross into the six-yard-box, Colotto was there waiting for the ball, but Leo Ulloa came from behind to head the ball past Aranzubia. There was no reaction from a grey Depor that preferred to wait for a reaction in the second part.

SECOND HALF
But Deportivo didn’t clear the grey impression left throughout the first part; Almeria started pushing up front, but quickly step back giving more room to Deportivo hoping to close the match through a counterattack. The Galicians had more ball possession –actually they ended the clash having a 53% of possession- but the ideas were frozen. Valerón was too delayed at midfield.  Salomão was disappeared and the only danger was coming through individual plays of Bruno Gama and Salomão, actions that neither were transformed into shots on target.

Meanwhile, Almeria was locked at its side of the pitch, but it created a sense of danger with its counterattacks, like the long-range attempt of Juanma Ortiz that was cleared by Aranzubia (59’). Then Oltra made the first substitution; as always he opted for an offensive modification searching for a reaction. Xisco entered replacing Álex and now Depor was playing with a 4-4-2 draw.

Then Oltra ordered the second substitution allowing the entry of Saul Fernandez replacing Salomão. The Portuguese had one of his worst games as he was the Depor’s player that lost the ball in more opportunities (8). The third modification was the entry of Pablo Álvarez for Lassad. The Tunisian was completing his match number 100 with the first team, but he passed unnoticed in the second part. This last change pulled back the 4-2-3-1.

The changes of Oltra are a clear reflection of Deportivo in this clash: disorder, flat game, zero ideas and no fluidity. The Valencian trainer sought for a reaction, but his team never showed the same level that put it as the leader in the competition. A clear demonstration of this was the fact that Depor didn’t complete any shot on target in the second part, it only gave a sense of danger with continuous crosses and which each corner-kick, actions that invited to remember the feat of Aranzubia on the past season.

Despite not been playing a great game, Depor was still alive, mainly because Almeria was content with the narrow score and because it was playing the last minutes locked at its zone, but the Andalusians were close to define the game at minutes 76 & 78, it both occasions with counterattack that left Ulloa alone before Aranzubia, but the keeper made three great saves.

That was just a warning of what was going to happen later, because in a new counterattack the locals defined the match. It was a play of Aleix Vidal in which he assisted Aarón Ñíguez, who had entered the pitch a few minutes before, his first attempt was saved by Aranzubia, but the goalie couldn’t do anything before the second attempt of the striker, a chipping attempt that also beat Colotto.

Five minutes were remaining in the clock, but Depor was already defeated. The true is that the Galician team was already dead since the first part, and the second goal just confirmed the facts. To make things worse the Galicians ended with ten men after Diego Colotto was sent off in a polemic play in which the Argentine defender and Aarón were pushing each other to get the ball; surely the club will appeal the call of the referee ahead of the crucial match against Valladolid.

AFTER THE GAME
Another dreadful match for Deportivo playing away from the Riazor; the Galicians were a sad team that did nothing in order to win and only the saves of Aranzubia kept the dreamed equalizer at reach. Almeria didn’t push in the second part though it defined the clash five minutes before the final whistle. This was the eighth defeat of Deportivo on the league season.

The worst part is that Oltra is losing Colotto and Bruno Gama, this last man picked his fifth yellow card on the season, ahead of the final against Real Valladolid (Sunday, Riazor, 20h00 CET). The Galicians have a five-point gap over second place Valladolid and a new victory will surely pave the way out to Primera División.

MATCH STATISTICS
UD Almeria: (4-2-3-1) Esteban - Rafita, Carlos García, Jakobsen, Dani Bautista (Alberto 84’) – Verza (Aarón 71’), Bernardello - Juanma Ortiz, Corona, Aleix Vidal – Ulloa (Jonathan 82’).
Deportivo: (4-2-3-1) Aranzubia – Laure, Colotto, Rochela, Morel – Álex Bergantiños (Xisco 59’), Juan Dominguez – Bruno Gama, Valerón, Salomão (Saul 66’) – Lassad (Pablo Álvarez 71’).
Referee Pedro Sureda Cuenca. He showed yellow card to Corona(53’), Bruno Gama (59’) and Bernadello (90+2’). Colotto was sent off (90´)
Goals: 1-0: (40') Ulloa, 2-0: (86’) Aaron
Venue: Estadio de Los Juego Mediterráneos (6,526)
Other statistics: Ball possession (47% - 53%); Attempts to score (7 – 2); Total shots (13 - 10); Shots on target (8 - 2); Saves by the keepers (2 - 6); Corner-kicks  (3 - 8); Offsides (1 - 5); Fouls committed (16 - 12); Accuracy in the passes (78.37% - 81.35%)

ARCHIVE NEWS APR/11

ZAPPING

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