First Division - Day 12

Real Sociedad 0 - Mallorca 1

Real Sociedad: Westerveld; López Rekarte, Jauregi, Schürrer, Aranzábal; Xabi Alonso, Alkiza (De Paula 75'); Karpin, Nihat, De Pedro (Gabilondo 46'); Kovacevic. 4-2-3-1.
Mallorca: Leo Franco; David Cortés, Fernando Niño, Lussenhoff, Olaizola; Nagore (Marcos 64'), Colsa; Campano, Correa (Bruggink 54'), Nené (Stankovic 74'); Eto'o. 4-2-3-1.

Team changes: Real: López Rekarte, De Pedro for Potillón, Gabilondo / Mallorca: Olaizola, Fernando Niño for Nadal, Toni González.

Goals: 0-1. 18. Eto'o. Collected through ball from Correa and shot low past keeper.

Luis Aragonés's Mallorca recorded their third win in a row, a 0-1 victory at Real Sociedad to move five points clear of the drop zone. The Balearic Islanders were by far the better side, and went close to taking the lead on the quarter hour mark when Westerveld's wild clearance hit his own defender Schürrer and fell to Eto'o, the Camerooni striker putting his shot just wide from a tight angle. A minute later though he didn't miss, beating the offside trap to pick up Correa's through ball and shoot low past the Dutch keeper.

Colsa was a complete menace and could have made it two a few minutes later, and Real didn't wake up until later in the half when Kovacevic got above Leo Franco to set up Nihat for a shot at goal, Lussenhoff clearing off the line with the keeper beaten. Denoueix had to replace the injured De Pedro with Gabilondo at half time, and after the restart the Basques started to assault their opponents' goal. Leo Franco saved well from a Kovacevic header and a Nihat free kick though, and the manager finally decided to throw on a third forward De Paula to try and get the equaliser.

The new man made an immediate impact, and he felt he had scored when Cortés stopped his header with his body and possibly with his arms when standing a foot over the line. However referee Pérez Burrull turned down appeals both for a goal and a penalty, and waved play on, booking De Paula into the bargain. After that the game petered out as Aragonés ordered his men to run down the clock, and Real were beaten at home for the first time since they lost to Tenerife in March last year, 20 months and 29 games ago. They now find themselves below their opponents in sixteenth spot, and have to bounce back midweek for their Champions League tie in Greece. At least in that competition they are holding their own.