First Division - Day 32

Espanyol 1 - Albacete 1

Espanyol: Lemmens; Domoraud, Lopo, Pochettino, Vignal; Fredson (Alex Fernández 90'), Wome (Maxi 56'); Hadji, De la Peña, Jordi Cruyff (Raducanu 56'); Tamudo. 4-2-3-1.
Albacete: Almunia; Oscar Montiel, Pablo, Buades, Peña; Viaud, David Sánchez (Alvaro Rubio 72'); Redondo, Parri (Basti 86'), Munteanu; Fabiano Costa (Mikel 65'). 4-2-3-1.

Team changes: Espanyol: Lopo, De la Peña, Jordi Cruyff for Torricelli, David García, Maxi / Albacete: Viaud, Parri for Alvaro Rubio, Pacheco.

0-1. 22. Redondo. Tap in from close up after Parri lifted ball over keeper.
1-1. 70. Maxi. Shot past Almunia after receiving pass from De la Peña.

Espanyol's hopes of survival took a tumble when they were held to a 1-1 draw by Albacete, who have now only lost two of their last nine games. Luis Fernández was hoping that a victory would drag the Manchegans back down into the relegation struggle, and Wome went close with a free kick early on. But the visitors caught their opponents off guard to take the lead midway through the first half, Parri finding Redondo with a chipped pass over Lemmens for the midfielder to roll the ball into the empty net. The Espanyol defenders immediately protested to Daudén Ibáñez that Fabiano was in an offside position, but the referee waved away their claims, considering that the player had not interfered with play.

Ten minutes after the interval Fernández went for broke, bringing on two extra forwards Raducanu and Maxi, and a quarter of an hour later Maxi got on the end of a pass from De la Peña to make it all square. But they could not add to their score after that, even though Tamudo did try his best in the final minutes. A victory for Mallorca meant that the Catalans ended the weekend five points away from safety, and with matches against Atlético, Barcelona and Deportivo still to come, time is rapidly running out.