Second division day 29
Sevilla moved a little further to returning to the first division with a 0-1 victory at Getafe, Casquero getting the only goal just after half time. They move up to 55 points, two ahead of Tenerife who recorded an important 0-2 victory at third placed Betis. Luis García and Mista scored the goals, and with Betis failing to win for the fifth match in a row, club president Manuel Ruiz de Lopera fired his manager Fernando Vázquez, naming one of his technical staff Luis Del Sol as caretaker. His team are still third, but are now four points adrift of the top two and only two ahead of Recreativo and Salamanca who are tied for fourth place.
Recreativo are proving to be the revelation of the division after being rescued from relegation last season following the bankruptcy of Mérida. They came from a goal down by Loreto in the seventh minute to beat Murcia 4-1 with strikes by David, Camacho, Bodipo and Benítez. Salamanca missed out for the umpteenth time on a chance to move up to the top three after losing to Levante 2-0. The Valencia based side jump four places up the table to eighth.
Undoubtedly the disappointment of the day was the 2-1 defeat of Atlético Madrid against Elche. Atleti had risen up to fifth in the table after five victories in a row, but they met their match against a side struggling to avoid relegation. Benja (who was sent off near the end) and Serban gave the home side a two goal lead before Salva pulled one back in the second half. Atlético drop two places to seventh, a point now behind Albacete who played a dull 0-0 draw at home to Leganés. Eibar lost ground after falling to their first defeat in ten games, and that to a team who had not won at home in over four months, Jaén. Pepelu scored the only goal of the game from the penalty spot early on. Badajoz join Eibar on 40 points after recording their sixteenth draw of the season, this time 0-0 against Córdoba.
Three of the bottom four clubs won, with Compostela moving up a place above Getafe after beating Extremadura 3-2 in a match in which the lead changed hands twice before Juanito sealed it near the end. The bottom two both won 1-2 away from home, with Lleida winning at Sporting and Universidad Las Palmas defeating Racing Ferrol. Both Lleida's goals were scored by full back Fran, who had been left out of the squad for most of the season after being linked with first division club Espanyol. Universidad's winner came from Jonathan in injury time after Ante Razov missed a penalty for the home side earlier on. With the teams above them winning, Racing drop to within one place of the relegation zone, only three points above Compostela. (18.03.01)