Second Division A - Day 22

Many changes on the managerial front over the last two weeks, and as luck would have it four of the new men found their sides playing on Saturday. Tenerife assistant manager Tigre Barrios took over the reins at the club after his boss Pepe Moré was sacked midweek together with technical director Lobo Carrasco, and he got off to a good start, his side only the second to take points off Elche in their Martínez Valero stadium this season. Although the match ended 0-0 there were chances throughout, with the locals having the better of the first forty five minutes, Peragón and Nino both seeing efforts turned away for corners by Keleman and his defence. But the Canary Islanders took over after the break, with Keko shooting wide with the goal at his mercy and Kiko Ratón also failing to convert two late opportunities.

Two other new coaches faced each other when José Marí Bakero's Málaga B met Enrique Martín's Xerez. The visitors ran out easy 0-3 winners though to record their second victory in a row and move back up to within four points of third placed Elche pending Sunday's games. Camuñas could have scored for the visitors early on, but they had to wait until three minutes before the break before Mena ran through to put them ahead. Roteta headed the second from a long free kick midway through the second half, and Moreno wrapped things up a quarter of an hour from the end with a headed goal to send the 3,000 travelling fans home happy.

A new manager too for Pontevedra, where Alberto Argibay replaced José Aurelio Gay after the Galicians had gone fifteen games without a win. He was unable to change their fortunes though, his team going down 1-0 to a Poli Ejido side who themselves had not had a victory in their last four matches. The only goal of the match came in the fourth minute when new signing Mara picked up a pass from Toedtli to beat Moso. Changui was unable to convert a chance at the other end, but otherwise Pepe Mel's side were in control, Corona and Pedro Vega both close to increasing the lead after the break. (29.01.05)

Leaders Alavés were beaten 1-0 by Valladolid on Sunday lunchtime, although they stayed in top spot at the end of the day thanks to slip ups by the teams below them. Bodipo came close to scoring for the Vitoria based side in the sixth minute, but less than sixty seconds later the locals were in front when Aduriz and Sousa combined to set up Figueredo for him to beat Bonano. Víctor almost made it two for Kresic's side on the hour mark, but Chuchi Cos threw on all his fire power later on to try and at least save a point. Epitié was unable to beat Bizzarri though when he was put through, and when the referee turned down a last minute penalty appeal on De Lucas it was all over. (30.01.05)

Second placed Cádiz failed to take advantage of Alavés's defeat earlier in the day, losing 1-2 at home to an Eibar side who move up level with them in the table. The visitors were on top right from the start, with Kike Mateo bringing a good save out of Armando before Llorente took advantage of slack defending to lob the keeper in the thirteenth minute. The Andalusians were level though a few minutes later when Oli and Pavoni combined to set up Jonathan Sesma, and Abraham Paz and Oli both went close to giving them the lead before the break. Things seemed to be swinging in favour of the home side midway through the second half when Fagoaga was sent off for a foul on Sesma, but under 21 international David Silva latched on to a loose ball five minutes from the end to fire home the winner and hand the locals their third defeat in a row.

The result means that none last week's top three won, and Celta took advantage to close to within three points of the promotion spots after a 1-0 victory over Almería. The local players came out wearing T-shirts with messages of support for Giovanella, who, like Athletic's Gurpegui, had tested positive for Nandrolone a few days ago. But they were lacking some sort of stimulus, and only a Gustavo López shot and a Canobbio free kick caused any problems for the local defence before the break. Two minutes after the restart though the Galicians got the goal they were looking for, Gustavo López beating Valerio with a shot from outside of the area following a short free kick, and the three points were in the bag.

Recreativo lost ground though after they were held 1-1 by Sporting Gijón, who have not lost now in Huelva in 28 years. The Asturians dominated the first half totally, Bauzá shooting wide and Ismael bringing a good save out of Luque before Arthuro headed them into the lead ten minutes before the break. Recre didn't manage a shot at goal until shortly before half time when Uche went close, but the introduction of Benítez and Azkorra at the break turned things around. Merino levelled the scores when he headed home Benítez's cross, Azkorra brought a good save out of Roberto, and Ismael had a goal disallowed for a previous foul. But even though the visitors had Pablo Alvarez sent off for a second bookable offence, they held on to take home a point.

Lleida kept their slim hopes of promotion alive with a 1-3 win at Racing Ferrol, taking them above their opponents into the top half of the table. The Catalans took the lead just before half time after Bello Amigo failed to hold on to Dani Marín's cross, Nakor taking advantage of the rebound to score. And the striker added a second goal twenty minutes from the end after a mistake by Darmón let him in. Granon got on the end of Jorge Pina's corner to pull one back for the home side just three minutes later, but Escoda restored the two goal advantage soon afterwards on a rapid breakaway to make it two defeats in a row for the Galicians at their A Malata stadium.

Down at the bottom there were single goal victories for the two Murcia sides, taking them both a little closer to salvation. Real Murcia beat Gimnastic Tarragona 1-0 thanks to a headed goal from Iván Alonso, a result which takes Mario Husillos's side to within two points of Málaga B. Despite the result it was a comfortable win for the home side, for whom Alonso was both villain and hero. The Uruguayan striker missed a complete sitter in the sixth minute, and wasted two more chances before the half time whistle. The Catalans hardly got a look at goal all match, and after youngster José María woke up the crowd with a spectacular run and shot which Valerio eventually kept out, Alonso finally came good when he headed home Richi's cross midway through the second half.

Meanwhile Ciudad Murcia defeated bottom club Córdoba 0-1, a result which ends the brief revival of the Andalusians and opens up a nine point gap between the last two in the league and the rest. The visitors almost scored with less than a minute on the clock when Luciano tripped himself up with the goal at his mercy, but from then on it was all Córdoba. Miki saved well from Marchiori moments later, and Montenegro thought he had scored only for the referee to disallow the strike, ruling that he had controlled the ball with his arm. But Ciudad got the only goal of the game against the run of play on the hour mark when Güiza took advantage of a lack of concentration by the defence to score.

Terrassa have been dragged down into the relegation battle after they lost 3-1 to fellow strugglers Salamanca, and they are now only two points above the drop zone. Jaime forced a good save out of Morales early on, but the keeper could do nothing a few minutes later when Tomás fired in a shot from the edge of the area. Monty equalised though just three minutes later after Juanele set him up, but shortly after Aurelio had a second half goal disallowed for a previous foul, Gorka Brit finished off a good team move to restore the lead. Aurelio made it three from a short Oscar Arpón free kick after the referee ruled that the visitors had passed back to the keeper, and Arpón could have got another when he hit the post in the dying minutes. (30.01.05)