First Division - Day 15

Valladolid 3 - Rayo Vallecano 1

Valladolid: Ricardo; Ricchetti, Santamaría (Chema 46'), Peña, Tena, Marcos; Fernando Sales, Fernando, Jesús; Cuauhtèmoc Blanco (Turu Flores 76'), Tote (Eusebio 60'). 5-3-2.
Rayo: Lopetegui; Cota, De Quintana, Mainz, Graff; Peragón (Glaucio 55'), Quevedo (Alcázar 40'), Helder, Michel; Baljic (Roy 80'), Bolic. 4-4-2.

Team changes: Valladolid: Santamaría, Fernando Sales, Fernando, Cuauhtèmoc Blanco for Torres Gómez, Eusebio, Oscar, Luis García / Rayo: Cota, Mainz, Peragón for Corino, Hernández, Bolo.

1-0. 25. Fernando. Shot low wide of keeper after Marcos laid back from left.
2-0. 37. Fernando. Ducking header following cross from Fernando Sales.
2-1. 45. Baljic. Shot through crowd of players as corner headed back.
3-1. 74. Chema. Beat keeper with low shot as Peña played ball in from right.

Bottom club Rayo Vallecano sank further into trouble after losing 3-1 to Valladolid. Rayo manager Gregorio Manzano was returning to face the man who was his number two at the Nuevo Zorrilla stadium a couple of seasons ago, and both he and Pep Moré made several changes to their sides after their respective cup victories midweek. In fact performances in those matches affected their team selection, with hat-trick hero against Albacete Roberto Peragón winning back his place for the visitors, and Fernando Sales getting back in the home team starting line up after masterminding their comeback at Racing Ferrol.

Moré also brought in on-loan Real Madrid youngster Fernando at the last minute, and he proved to be the match winner with two goals in the first half. In between Rayo were reduced to ten men when Graff was sent off after picking up two yellow cards in a minute. However rather than falling apart the Madrid based side came back, and another player on loan from their larger neighbours Baljic put them back in the game with his first goal for his new club. The visitors kept up the pressure in the second half, so much so that Pepe Moré took off his top scorer Tote to put on an extra midfielder Eusebio as Peragón and De Quintana missed chances. However Chema finished things off beating Lopetegui with a quarter of an hour to go just as the home fans were getting on their backs, taking the Pucelanos up to the top half of the table. Rayo have yet to win away, and are now seven points away from safety at the bottom.