First Division - Day 9

Racing Santander 0 - Espanyol 1

Racing: Ricardo; Coromina, Pablo Casar, Juanma, Neru; Diego Mateo (Javi Guerrero 60'), Nafti (Regueiro 88'); Morán, Benayoun, Jonathan (Txiki 77'); Bodipo. 4-2-3-1.
Espanyol: Toni; Tayfun, Torricelli, Lopo, David García; Morales, Domoraud, Alex Fernández (Oscar 71'); Maxi, Jordi Cruyff; Tamudo (Raúl Molina 32', Bobson 92'). 4-3-2-1.

Team changes: Racing: Jonathan for Regueiro / Espanyol: Toni, Alex Fernández, Jordi Cruyff for Lemmens, Wome, Bobson.

0-1. 83. Oscar. Long free kick which bounced past keeper in off post.

Espanyol finally recorded their first win of the season, a 0-1 victory at Racing Santander, thereby saving Javier Clemente's job for the time being. The manager had been heavily criticised following six straight defeats in a row, the last two by four goals to nil, and although club president Daniel Sánchez Llibre had expressed his confidence in his coach, another defeat could have been the final nail in the coffin.

The match was played in rain and strong wind which made conditions difficult, and chances were few and far between. Racing were on top for most of the first half, but their only real attempts at goal were efforts from Bodipo and Nafti which went wide, and a shot from Diego Mateo near the break which Toni saved.The best chance for the locals though came early in the second half after Toni failed to clear, Benayoun's lofted shot hitting the inside of the post and Bodipo tucking it away on the rebound. Referee Losantos Omar correctly ruled the goal out for offside, but did appear to make a mistake a few minutes later when he waved away penalty appeals after Bodipo was brought down in the area.

The Catalans had hardly had a shot on target all game, but substitute Oscar struck the winner seven minutes from the end from a long free kick which bounced past Ricardo and went in off a post. It was a bitter blow for the locals who threw everything forward after that, but although they did the get ball in the net again in the dying minutes, once again it was disallowed as Javi Guerrero had handled in the area. Espanyol ended with ten men after Oscar managed to get himself sent off, but nobody seemed to mind. They had finally won for the first time since May, and although they remain bottom, there is at least hope.