Second division, week 42
A thrilling last day in the second division, with the final promotion and relegation spots being decided right at the end. As expected, Numancia and Getafe will join Levante in the first division next season after winning their respective matches, Numancia beating Recreativo 2-0 with goals from Mikel Alonso in the first half and Rosu from the penalty spot after the break, and Getafe running out 3-5 winners in a high scoring match at Tenerife, all five of their goals coming from Pachón. Both remain two points ahead of Alavés, whose 1-2 win against Basque neighbours Eibar was to no avail.
Curiously, whilst Getafe were winning promotion to the top flight for the first time in their history, their two neighbours from the South of Madrid were being relegated. Rayo Vallecano and Leganés will be playing their football in the second division B next season after losing their last matches at home. Rayo needed to win and hope for two of their rivals to lose, but they were beaten 1-2 by already relegated Las Palmas, who moved above them in the table as a result. Leganés meanwhile only needed a point against relegation rivals Córdoba to stay up, but a goal from Nico Olivera on the stroke of half time left them down and out. They can only hope now for a repeat of last season, when they were reinstated after Compostela went down in their place for failing to pay their players' wages.
Two southern region sides saved themselves on the last day, Poli Ejido beating Xerez 1-0 and Ciudad Murcia winning 2-0 against bottom club Algeciras. Leaders Levante celebrated their title with a 4-4 draw at Terrassa, Reggi getting three of their goals, and Sporting shrugged off their disappointment about missing out on promotion with a 1-0 win over Málaga B. And in the last match of the evening, Cádiz rounded off an acceptable first season back in the second division with a 2-1 victory against Almería. (19.06.04)
Three sides will be fighting it out for the two remaining promotion spots on Saturday. Numancia and Getafe start with a two point advantage over Alavés coming in to the last day, with five other sides trying to avoid the last two relegation places. One match was brought forward to Friday night, with Salamanca running out 1-2 winners at Elche. Both teams finish the season safely in mid-table. (18.06.04)