|First Division - Day 13|
Alavés 0 - Valencia 0
Dutruel; Geli, Karmona, Téllez, Llorens; Desio, Pablo (Magno 85');
Astudillo, Jordi Cruyff, Ibon Begoña (Ilie 62'); Iván Alonso
(Rubén Navarro 62'). 4-2-3-1.
Team changes: Alavés: Pablo, Iván Alonso for Mara, Rubén Navarro / Valencia: Curro Torres, Ayala, Fabio Aurelio, De los Santos, Vicente, Carew for Garrido, Pellegrino, Carboni, Baraja, Mista, Kily González.
Valencia stay in third place after drawing 0-0 at Alavés. The game was played in difficult conditions, with a heavy rainstorm throughout, and with Baraja rested after a series of tiring games and Mista the latest to join a growing injury list, Rafa Benítez put out a side to suit the muddy pitch. His side received another serious blow though with only a quarter of an hour gone when Cañizares clashed knees with Jordi Cruyff and had to be carried off, Palop coming on for his first league appearance of the season. The new man was in action straight away, saving from Astudillo, although te better chances fell at the other end, where Vicente shot wide and Angulo rounded Dutruel but could not hit the target.
Conscious of what had happened two weeks ago down the road against Osasuna, Benítez took off Carew to bring on Baraja in midfield. Mané took advantage to reinforce his attack, Ilie and Rubén Navarro joining Cruyff up front. Even so chances were few and far between, with Juan Sánchez failing to control the ball when given space, and Astudillo firing a shot just wide of the post after a good team move. Benítez made a final change to eat up time, but rather than bring on Salva, who would then have been unavailable for transfer this winter having made his fifth appearance of the season, he preferred to give a run out to B team youngster Borja Criado. Valencia took a point which keeps them in the title race, and Alavés record their second scoreless draw in a row, keeping their heads just above water, three points above the drop zone in fifteenth place.