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Match round-up - Second Division A, Day 40

Eibar have been promoted to the first division for the first time in their history after beating Alavés 1-0 on Sunday evening! The modest Basque side only came up from the regional second division B last season, and they will become the sixtieth team to play in the top flight. Their presence is still not 100% confirmed though as (although they are debt free and up to date with payments), they still have to fulfil the league’s minimum share capital requirements by the end of July. At the moment they are over a million Euros short, and if they fail to find the money they will be relegated back to the second division B. However now they have been promoted they should be able to find backers. The match itself was a tense affair, Garitano’s side not having won in their Ipurúa stadium for five games, and the visitors desperate for points to avoid the drop. Jota won it though for the locals with a shot from outside of the area on the hour mark, and many fans stayed on after the final whistle until it was confirmed that Las Palmas had been beaten, at which point the celebrations began.

Deportivo missed out on going up this weekend though after they lost 2-1 at Numancia, although they only need one point from their next two games to make sure of an immediate return to the top flight. The locals also needed a result though to ensure their safety, and Sergi Enrich headed against the bar before Regalón headed in a Julio Alvarez corner in the twentieth minute. Luisinho equalized though five minutes later after Bonilla gave the ball away, and Fernando Vázquez attempted to close up shop looking for what would have been a fourth draw in a row. However Nuñez got himself sent off for a second bookable offence with just under an hour on the clock, and with seven minutes to go David González and Sergi Enrich combined for Palanca to score the winner.

Despite a run of five matches without a victory, Depor are still on the brink of promotion after their closest rivals also failed to win. Las Palmas were last to kick off, and they were beaten 2-3 by a Recreativo side who are themselves now back in the running for a play-off spot. Aranda put the Canary Islanders ahead in only the second minute, and although Barbosa had several saves to make after that, the veteran striker connected with a Momo assist to score his second of the night soon after the restart. Within ten minutes though scores were level, Deivid turning Ezequiel’s centre in to his own net and Menosse getting on the end of a Jonathan Valle free kick, and Ezequiel himself got the winner for the Andalusians near the end. Murcia failed to take advantage though, and they stay a point behind Las Palmas after a 1-1 draw against Zaragoza. Saúl Berjón put the locals ahead shortly before half time with a long shot which went through the hands of Leo Franco, but midway through the second half Henríguez headed the equalizer from Acevedo’s cross to give his side a point which ensures their place in the second division for another season.

Only two points though separate six teams in the push for the four play-off spots, Córdoba holding on to sixth spot (level with Murcia and Recreativo) after beating Real Madrid Castilla 2-0. Despite their position in the league, on paper the visitors were favourites after seven away games without defeat, compared to only two home wins for the Andalusians since the start of the year. However the locals held off the early pressure, and seven minutes in to the second half Pinillos opened the scoring with a shot from well outside of the area which beat Pacheco. And with an hour on the clock Pedro latched on to a long pass from López Silva to make it two, leaving Manolo Diaz’s side back down in the relegation zone. Sabadell stay just a point below Córdoba though after they won 1-0 against Tenerife. The Catalans started the game a point above their opponents, and they went in front shortly before half time when Carlos Ruíz turned a Longás cross past his own keeper under pressure from Martí Crespí. Local keeper Nauzet had to make a string of saves after the interval, but the canary Islanders couldn’t prevent a fifth defeat in a row which leaves them with no chance of making it back to the top six.

Alcorcón still have an outside chance of reaching the play-off spots however after they beat Mirandés 2-0. The Madrid based side had won their last four games, and Dani Pacheco hit the woodwork twice before Juli got on the end of a Fernando Sales cross to open the scoring just a minute in to the second half. Dani Giménez had to keep out Diaz de Cerio and Pablo Infante later on, but with two minutes to go Héctor Verdés headed in Pacheco’s corner to take his team to within three points of the top six. Mirandés drop to sixteenth, a point behind Ponferradina, who are now close to safety after beating Jaén 0-1. Berrocal got the only goal of the game in the seventeenth minute after visiting keeper René gifted the ball to him, and they held on after that to move three points clear of the Andalusians in the table.

Lugo are level with Ponferradina after they drew 1-1 at bottom club Hércules. The Alicante based side really had to win all their remaining matches to have any chance of staying up, and De Lucas gave them the lead with a cross-come-shot which went in off the post some twelve minutes in to the second half. However with three minutes to go Hervás gave away a penalty on Fran Sandaza, and Manu stepped up to slot home the resulting spot kick. The result left Hércules five points away from safety, and the only reason they didn’t already go down was that eighteenth placed Mallorca could only draw 1-1 at fellow strugglers Girona. The islanders changed their coach for the second time this season after only winning two of their last 17 games, Olaizola the new man in charge, but he saw his new team go behind when Migue got on the end of a corner to beat Aouate a couple of minutes before the break. The Catalans were left with ten men however when Jandro picked up a second booking, and with a quarter of an hour to go Geijo headed in another corner to keep his team two points above their hosts in the table. (25.05.14)

With the all-Madrid Champions League final taking centre stage, only one second division match took place on Saturday, Sporting Gijón beating Barcelona B 1-0 earlier in the afternoon to close in on the play-off spots. As usual, Eusebio’s side dominated possession, but even so Nacho Casas almost caught out Masip with a long shot before Carmona ran through to set up youngster Jony for the opener midway through the first half. The visitors brought on all their fire power after the break, but they could find no way through a well ordered defence, and substitute Mendy almost increased the lead when he fired a shot against the upright. The win takes the Asturians level with their opponents in fourth place pending Sunday’s games, another good result for caretaker coach Abelardo, his side having picked up seven points since the B team manager took over from Sandoval three weeks ago. (24.05.14)