First Division - Day 25

Valencia 0 - Celta 0

Valencia: Cañizares; Curro Torres, Ayala, Pellegrino, Fabio Aurelio; Baraja (Aimar 64'), Albelda; Rufete (Carew 82'), Mista, Kily González; Salva (Vicente 76'). 4-2-3-1.
Celta: Cavallero; Yago, Cáceres, Sergio, Silvinho; Giovanella, Doriva; Karpin (Juanfran 82'), Mostovoi, Jesuli (Catanha 71'); Edu. 4-2-3-1.

Team changes: Valencia: Ayala, Fabio Aurelio, Baraja, Rufete, Mista, Kily González, Salva for Djukic, Carboni, De los Santos, Angulo, Aimar, Vicente, Carew / Celta: Yago, Giovanella, Doriva, Mostovoi, Edu for Coira, Luccin, Vagner, Gustavo López, Catanha.

Goals: None.

The top two teams in the league played out a score-less draw on Saturday night, leaving the league table still wide open at the top. Coming soon after their Wednesday night match Rafa Benítez once again made several changes, bringing back many of his first choice players after they were rested in the last match. Celta were missing their two suspended central midfielders Vagner and Luccin, the former banned for three matches after kicking Tristán in their defeat at the hands of Deportivo and the latter for insulting the referee in that match. Mostovoi came back after his one match ban, and Víctor Fernández decided to leave Catanha on the bench and play Edu up front. With so much at stake it was a hard fought game, and referee Rodríguez Santiago awarded over fifty free kicks during the 90 minutes. The match was billed as the league's best defence (Valencia) against the highest scoring attack (Celta), and it was the defenders who certainly got the better of their counterparts who hardly managed a shot at goal after Edu's initial run.

Valencia did test Cavallero though, with Mista hitting the bar with a shot from outside of the area and the keeper tipping a header from Salva over the top before the break. Both managers made attacking changes in the second half, with Aimar joining the home side front pairing and Catanha replacing Jesuli for the visitors. Eventually though Víctor settled for a point and brought on Juanfran, and Valencia put on the pressure with Carew coming on for Rufete. In the last few minutes Aimar shot over the bar and Carew sent a header just wide, and they had a strong penalty claim when Catanha handled involuntarily in the area right at the end. However the points were shared and Valencia stayed two points ahead of their opponents, dropping to second place behind Real Madrid after Sunday's games.