|First Division - Day 10|
Osasuna 1 - Valencia 0
Yanguas, Mateo, Cruchaga, Antonio López; Alfredo, Pablo García;
Rivero (Puñal 77'), Iván Rosado (Palacios 85'), Moha (Gancedo
75'); Aloisi. 4-2-3-1.
Team changes: Osasuna: Yanguas, Pablo García for Vidrio, Puñal / Valencia: Fabio Aurelio for Carboni.
Osasuna ended Valencia's unbeaten away record with a 1-0 victory in the Sadar stadium. The Pamplona based side came into the game desperate for a result after three defeats in a row had taken them into the relegation zone, and with Vidrio deciding to return to Mexico and Pablo García returning from suspension, Javier Aguirre made two changes to his starting line up. There was no place though for Pipa Gancedo, who had been fined by the club during the week for indiscipline, and he was booed by some portions of the crowd both when he took his place on the substitutes' bench and when he came on later in the game. Gancedo had failed to turn up for last week's game claiming he had a stomach ailment when the truth was that he had had a run in with the local police over a traffic offence.
Valencia were looking a little jaded, something they could not really put down to their midweek Champions League game as most of the first choice players were rested for that match. However the intense season had clearly taken it's toll, and the home side took the lead in the sixth minute when Iván Rosado stooped to head a long Pablo García free kick past Cañizares. With a goal in the bag the rest was a well disciplined performance, keeping up the pressure on the opponents with some hard Basque tackling and not allowing spaces at the back. Valencia were limited to long shots and high balls into the area looking for their giant striker John Carew, and shots before the break from Rufete, Baraja and Carew himself did not cause Sanzol much trouble.
Rafa Benítez had lost Aimar to what looked like a hamstring injury midway through the first half, and the limping Rufete also had to be replaced at the break. Carew had another pot at goal soon after the restart, but with two of their key playmakers missing they did not do much else throughout the match. In fact it was the Pamplona based side who could have increased their lead under the guidance of a nippy Rivero, and Moha went close twice, once forcing a good save out of Cañizares and then seeing another effort cleared by the defence. Osasuna fans had waited fifteen years to see their side beat Valencia, but this was their day, and they move to within a hair's breath of leaving the relegation zone, just behind Rayo Vallecano on goal difference.