Second division day 41
Excitement and controversy in the second division, with Betis, Tenerife and Atlético Madrid all winning at home in games rumoured to be influenced by illegal cash incentives. Whatever the truth was, only one point separates the three of them, and the last two promotion spots will be decided between them in the last round of matches next Sunday night. Betis won a bad-tempered match 1-0 against local rivals Recreativo Huelva, who are now out of the promotion race with this defeat. There were ugly scenes both on and off the pitch, and also in the directors box when Betis's controversial president Manuel Ruiz de Lopera insulted his opposite number after Belenguer scrambled the winner near the end, accusing his team of accepting money from Atlético to draw.
Tenerife cruised into a three goal lead against bottom club Lleida, with Mista scoring two and making another for Bruno Marioni before the game was fifty minutes old. However with the visitors rumoured to be on a 50 million Pesetas bribe from Betis and/or Atlético Madrid to get a result, they pegged two back through a Cainzos own goal and a Renaldo strike before they were reduced to ten men at the end.
Atlético Madrid struggled to beat Sporting Gijon who also appeared to be motivated by more than just personal pride. The game ended as a contest when Sporting were reduced to nine men after Isma and then Vicente were sent off for fouling young substitute Fernando Torres (that makes four in two games), and Luque hit the winner with a free kick.
The final relegation spot is now down to two teams, Elche and Compostela, who by chance play each other next weekend. Elche's 0-1 victory at Murcia this Sunday means that Compostela have to win away against their opponents to stay up. Compostela could only draw 0-0 at home to Jaén. Lleida, Getafe and Universidad Las Palmas are already relegated. Getafe drew 2-2 at draw specialists Badajoz, and even if their appeal is accepted against the ruling to dock them three points, nothing will change. Universidad won again, 2-1 against Leganés, to move above Getafe in the table.
Albacete started the day with a remote chance of promotion, but even though they beat Córdoba 1-4 with a Maikel hat-trick, they are now out of it. So too are Salamanca, who won 1-3 away at Eibar. Elsewhere Racing Ferrol made sure of staying up with a 1-1 draw against Levante. (10.06.01)
Leaders Sevilla wrapped up the league title last week, and they played out a 1-1 draw at Extremadura in the only game played on Saturday night. Under 21 international David Aganzo gave the home side the lead within a quarter of an hour of the kick off after Sevilla's Víctor had been sent off for a second bookable offence. However the visitors came back with ten men, and Loren made it all square in the second half. The draw ends Extremadura's run of seven home wins in a row. (09.06.01)