Valencia 2- Espanyol 1: Mestalla present a new armed robbery
A penalty converted by Roberto Soldado two minutes from time gave Valencia the victory in one of their worst games of the season, in which Espanyol was not able to take advantage of its rival's inability to take the game forward, since he handled the ball, but it did not create danger.
The key play was the penalty awarded two minutes from the end by the hands of Héctor Moreno, which was highly protested by the visiting players and which was accompanied by the expulsion of the Mexican defender himself and Sergio García.
Valencia only showed signs of life in the first quarter of an hour of play, but with what each other showed on the field of play, Espanyol should not have lost, although he did it again in a cursed stadium in recent years, in which controversy has always surrounded their tight defeats.
The first minutes were marked by Valencia's clear chances, who approached the Spanish goal with danger, since the local players were much more intense than the visitors in the initial stages of the clash. As a result of Valencia's greater presence in the match, the arrived 1-0 when Jonathan Viera took advantage of a rebound and beat Cristian Álvarez with a placed shot.
Espanyol offered a better image when their players had the ball forward from midfield than when they defended, although little by little they were sung behind, at the same time that Valencia lost the steam of the first minutes and their arrivals began to be less and less frequent at the Catalan team's goal. Without their arrivals being clear, Little by little, Espanyol began to show more potential in attack and was able to take advantage of its option to tie after half an hour of play in an action by Verdú that Longo finished off..
A partir de entonces, Valencia was not comfortable, He had difficulties in his creation game and the match reached half-time with little to report, with the exception of the four cards seen by the locals despite the fact that until then the match had had nothing special in terms of discipline. Espanyol was a more settled team than Valencia at the beginning of the second half: He touched the ball better and created more danger than Valencia, an imprecise team unable to keep the ball, that for many minutes he was at the mercy of his rival.
Valencia remained locked in their field and without the ability to respond to a rival that took all the divided balls, which forced the local technician, Mauricio Pellegrino, to introduce Banega and Bernat to, al menos, get his team to lead the match. Espanyol did not match his clear dominance in his chances, since his long shots did not create problems for Diego Alves, but he wasn't in any trouble either. The 1-2 that he 2-1, especially because Valencia was a team without soul, until in an isolated action, two minutes from the end, el árbitro, at the request of the assistant, He considered that Héctor Moreno made hands in a Barragán center.
Soldier marked the 2-1 in an action that resulted in two warnings and two expulsions for Espanyol, whose players strongly protested the referee's decision, which punished the Catalan team excessively, that in no case did anyone deserve to lose this match, let alone do so with the cruelty with which the tie escaped.