Second Division A - Day 6

A last minute penalty gave Real Murcia a 1-0 win over Alavés, taking them level with leaders Xerez pending their game on Sunday. Lucas Alcaraz's side had the better chances in the first half, Bonano saving from Iván Alonso and Jofre almost scoring with a cross come shot. Ogbeche could have opened the scoring for the visitors soon after the restart though, and substitute Pape Thiaw was unlucky to have a possible goal ruled out after referee Caballero Herreros waved away claims that his header had crossed the line before Notario cleared. Caballero also turned down a penalty appeal for hands by the Alavés players, but with the game already in injury time he controversially pointed to the spot when Pedro León and Astudillo bumped in to each other in the area, and Aranda stepped up to slot home the kick.

Málaga are only a point behind Murcia though after coming from a goal down against Las Palmas to win 3-1. The Canary islanders went in front in the twentieth minute when Txiki beat Arnau after the defence failed to block a long clearance by Pindado, and Nauzet just missed a chance to increase the lead soon afterwards. Calleja equalised with a looping shot shortly before the break, but Márquez could have restored the lead for the visitors after the restart had he not shot wide in front of goal. Five minutes later though Salva headed the hosts into the lead from Saúl's corner, and Pablo Couñago finished things off with another header from Gámez's cross near the end. The defeat meant the end for Las Palmas coach Carlos Aguiar, who was sacked the following day.

Elsewhere Numancia move up the table to fifth after thrashing bottom club Vecindario 1-5. By half time Andoni Goikoetxea's side were four up, Fran Moreno opening the scoring in the tenth minute after Keleman could only push out Del Pino's shot. Bolo got the second a few minutes later, and Del Pino added two in as many minutes around the half hour mark to put the game beyond the home side's reach. Bolo ht the post before the half time whistle, and although Ruano got a consolation goal following a short free kick in the second half, substitute Fukuda completed the "manita" on a rapid counter-attack just four minutes from the end.

Castellón move away from the danger zone with a 0-2 victory at Cádiz, a result which provoked protests from the home fans for the first time in five years. It was a poor performance by the Andalusians, who could have gone behind to efforts from Natalio, Ibon and Mario before Nakor took advantage of a bad clearance by Armando to open the scoring in the tenth minute. The keeper did stop an effort from Xavi Moré soon afterwards, but he could do nothing to keep out Mora when he connected with a corner on the stroke of half time. The locals didn't react until the last few minutes, when Oliva kept out shots from Paz and Nano. (30.09.06)

Sporting Gijón moved back up to the top half of the table with a 0-3 win over Real Madrid Castilla on Sunday lunchtime. The Asturians had the better of the first half, with Congo heading them in to the lead in the twenty-fifth minute. Mata had a couple of chances for the locals, but ex Castilla striker Barral came close at the other end before the break. Andreu made it two though with a shot which deflected in off Adrián, and the hosts were left with ten men when Agus was sent off for a foul on Omar. The referee awarded a penalty to Castilla for a foul on Negredo late on but then changed his mind, and whilst the protest were still going on, Diego Castro took advantage to cut past a couple of players and score his side's third.

Xerez hold on to top spot despite losing 2-1 at Lorca on Sunday evening, their first defeat of the season. The Andalusians should have taken an early lead with a twice taken penalty, but Jauregui saved Arrubarrena's kick. Geijo did beat the keeper though soon afterwards with a low shot to give the visitors the lead, but Javi Rodríguez came on to level the scores midway through the second half. Pepe Murcia threw on Yordi and then Francis, but incredibly both got themselves sent off within a couple of minutes of coming on. And Javi Rodríguez wrapped things up with a last minute winner to give his side their second victory of the season.

Only one point separates the top five though after Salamanca beat neighbours Valladolid 2-3 in a thrilling match. On loan Celta midfielder Roberto opened the scoring for the visitors with a free kick which took a deflection off Marcos in the defensive wall in the twentieth minute, but four minutes later Llorente equalised for the locals. Dani Tortolero restored the lead for the away side following another dead ball kick on the half hour mark, but once again Llorente squared the match just two minutes after the restart. Pina got the winner for the visitors though three minutes after that, and Medilibar's side ended with ten men after Sisi picked up a second booking in the dying minutes.

Another four sides are only two points behind the leading bunch, including Tenerife, who beat last week's second placed team Albacete 1-0. The Manchegans dominated the first half but were unable to score, with Parri, Biagini and Ferrón all going close. Frankowski shot over the top and Raúl Sánchez also went close though for the locals either side of half time, and with five minutes to go substitute Cristo Marrero latched on to a loose ball on the edge of the area to give his team the three points.

Ponferradina are level with Tenerife after a 2-0 victory over Poli Ejido, their third win in a row to zero in the Toralín stadium. Rubén Vega opened the scoring from the penalty spot for the Castilla-León side after López Ramos handled In the area. And they could have scored a couple more before Risso headed the second from a corner fifteen minutes in to the second half. The defeat leaves Ejido just a point above the drop zone.

Ciudad Murcia are also back in the running after a 1-2 win against a struggling Elche, who find themselves in the bottom four as a result. Luque put the visitors ahead in only the fourth minute with a free kick which bounced past Caballero, and although Peragón came close to equalising, Gibanel could have increased the lead with a header which the keeper managed to keep out. Gastón Casas did level the scores with a header from Cachorro's corner just four minutes after the restart, but soon afterwards Falcón put the visitors back in front, and when Benja was sent off near the end it was all over.

Hércules also find themselves in the relegation zone after losing 3-0 to an Almería side who move above them in the table. All three goals came after the break after the locals had dominated the first half, Crusat getting the first after Corona set him up just two minutes after the restart. Kalu Uche and Ortíz combined for Mario Bermejo to make it two with eight minutes to go, and Ortíz got the third in the last minute, finishing off after good work by Bermejo. (01.10.06)