First Division - Day 14

Albacete 0 - Valencia 1

Albacete: Gaspercic; Gaspar, Buades, Rubén, Peña; Alvaro Rubio, Viaud; Redondo, Pacheco, Mark González (Francisco 85'); Rubén Castro (Mikel 55'). 4-2-3-1.
Valencia: Cañizares; Curro Torres, David Navarro, Caneira, Carboni; Marchena, Fabio Aurelio (Baraja 83'); Rufete, Aimar (Mista 72'), Fiore; Di Vaio (Xisco 72'). 4-2-3-1.

Team changes: Albacete: Pacheco, Mark González, Rubén Castro for Iván Díaz, Momo, Mikel / Valencia: Marchena, Fabio Aurelio, Rufete, Aimar, Di Vaio for Moretti, Baraja, Sissoko, Xisco, Corradi.

0-1. 86. Xisco. Connected with Marchena cross and struck deflected shot into net.

Valencia moved level with second placed Real Madrid pending their game on Sunday after beating Albacete 0-1 on Saturday evening. It was another workmanlike performance from Ranieri's side, who have now gone four games without letting in a goal. With an important Champions League match coming up on Tuesday against Werder Bremen, the manager put out a much changed side. And they made little headway against a home side who could have been in the lead by half time had Pacheco's free kick not just cleared the bar and Rubén Castro's effort soon afterwards not missed the target.

The visitors did show some form after the restart, with Fiore hitting the side netting early on. But from then on Albacete did all the attacking, Cañizares saving twice from Mark González and Redondo hitting the post from close up following a corner. Curro Torres almost headed into his own net trying to clear a free kick, and Cañizares just got back in time to tip an audacious long free kick from Rubén over the bar. But with a draw the most likely result, substitute Xisco scored the winning goal with a shot which took a deflection off a defender. Ranieri made no apologies after the match; his side need points and he said they would get them however they could. Good football may come later if and when they get their confidence back.