First Division - Day 25

Málaga 3 - Athletic Bilbao 0

Málaga: Contreras; Rojas, Bravo, Litos, Valcarce; Manu, Romero, Sandro (Miguel Angel 66'), Musampa; Darío Silva (Leko 87'), Dely Valdés (Canabal 80'). 4-4-2.
Athletic: Aranzubia; César (Felipe 80'), Aitor Ocio, Karanka, Larrazábal; Oskar Vales (Julen Guerrero 65'), Alkiza; Joseba Etxeberría (Arriaga 78'), Tiko, Ezquerro; Urzaiz. 4-2-3-1.

Team changes: Málaga: Rojas, Litos, Dely Valdés for Josemi, Fernando Sanz, Gerardo / Athletic: César, Karanka, Larrazábal, Urzaiz for Javi González, Luis Prieto, Del Horno, Arriaga.

1-0. 24. Dely Valdés. Slid ball into net after Darío Silva passed across.
2-0. 76. Manu. Beat Larrazábal to control Dely pass and shoot past keeper.
3-0. 85. Manu. Turned ball into net after Canabal hit post from close up.

Málaga picked up a morale-boosting 3-0 victory over Athletic Bilbao to set them up for their Thursday night UEFA cup clash with Boavista. Peiró's side were far superior to their Basque rivals, and took the lead midway through the first half when Darío Silva ran on to a Sandro through ball and unselfishly played the ball across for Dely Valdés to score.

The visitors went close before the break when Etxeberría set up Ezquerro, but he struck his shot over the bar, and they continued their attacks into the second half. However, even with Urzaiz back in the side they were unable to break down a well ordered defence, and the ndalucians went further in front when Larrazábal misjudged a high ball from Darío Silva, allowing Manu to run on and score.

Then with five minutes to go the new young sensation got his second of the night in a long play, Arranzubia saving from Darío and substitute Canabal hitting the post before Manu finally found the back of the net. The win takes Málaga back up to the top half of the table, and leaves Athletic in fourteenth place, just four points above the drop zone. Heynckes' comments after the match that his side were doomed for relegation if they didn't buck up their ideas didn't go down to well at the club.