Second Division A - Day 30

Second placed Málaga lost 1-0 to regional neighbours Xerez on Saturday evening, a result which leaves them four points behind leaders Numancia, who play on Sunday. Despite being in next to bottom spot, the locals dominated the match, the second division top scorer Yordi in particular having several opportunities to open the scoring before being brought down by Goitia in the area early in the second half. The keeper was sent off, but Yordi put his spot kick wide. The striker made up for it a few minutes later though, heading a Pedro Ríos cross past Arnau to take his side within two points of escaping the drop zone.

Málaga are still six points clear of Sporting Gijón, who moved above Real Sociedad to third after beating their rivals 1-0. The Basque side were on top in the first half, Jorge clearing off the line from Díaz de Cerio with the keeper beaten and Aranburu heading just wide. Víctor missed a couple more chances after the break, but by then the Asturians were getting back in the match, and Riesgo had to make two or three good saves from Pedro, Bilic and Jorge. The keeper could do nothing though when Bilic fired a shot past him with nine minutes to go, taking the locals two points above Real in the table.

Curiously none of the five away sides who played on Saturday managed to score. Sevilla Atlético lost 2-0 to Elche, who move above them in the table to fifth. After early pressure from the home side, Perotti and Juanjo both missed sitters. Varas had to save from Raúl Martín and Luna though, and Cobo hit the bar with a long shot after the restart. Midway through the second half substitute Oscar Díaz finally opened the scoring after getting on the end of a Vega cross to beat the keeper, and he wrapped things up with a second goal right at the end to take David Vidal's side three points away from the promotion spots.

Las Palmas climb out of the bottom four after a 2-0 victory over Cádiz. The visitors had the better of the early play, Natalio in particular shooting over the top wnen free on goal. But three minutes before the break Adrián Colunga headed the Canary Islanders in to the lead from Christian Fernández's cross. Local keeper Santamaría kept out the Cádiz forwards after that, and Christian Fernández himself headed in the second from a Trashorras corner midway through the second half.

A Goiria hat-trick helped Eibar beat Tenerife 4-0, taking the Basque side away from the danger zone. The Canary Islanders had never lost in the Ipurua stadium, but they went behind with a quarter of an hour on the clock when Goiria converted a penalty after N'Diaye handled in the area. Goiria added two more early in the second half, the first a shot into the top corner of the net and the second after an assist from Codina, and Nacho Insa completed the rout a few minutes later, beating Juan Pablo after Goiria set him up. (22.03.08)

Leaders Numancia were surprised by Celta on Sunday lunchtime, the Galicians coming from a goal down to win 1-2. Julio Alvarez gave the home side the lead with a well struck before the break, but half time substitute Diego Costa scored twice in the second half, the first just a minute after coming on and the second with a run from his own half. Before that Lequi had been sent off and Esteban tipped another alvarez free kick onto the post, but Antonio López's side held on to move back up the table to eighth.

Celta are now three points behind Castellón, who are now sixth in the table after a 1-0 win over Salamanca later in the day. Arana scored the only goal midway through the second half, following up after Pagola saved a penalty from Mario Rosas, given after the ball hit Català on the arm. Before that Dañobeitia had a goal disallowed for the visitors.

Hércules are out of contention for the promotion spots after they drew again, this time 1-1 at Racing Ferrol. Lamatina saved a point for the Galicians in injury time, following up after an excellent Unai Alba could only block a previous shot. Earlier in the second half Sergio Fernández had headed Goikoetxea's side into the lead.

A battle royal down at the bottom of the table, where only five points separate seven teams, with several others only just a bit higher. Bottom club Poli Ejido followed in the footsteps of Xerez with a 1-0 victory over Granada 74. Toedtli headed the winner from Juan's corner five minutes from the end, by which time the visitors were down to ten men after Ruz had been shown a second yellow card.

Ejido are now just one point behind Albacete, who suffered another set-back after being held to a 0-0 draw by a Gimnàstic side who are now being managed by the Manchegans' old coach César Ferrando. The first shot didn't come until twenty minutes in to the second half, when Jonathan saved from substitute Calle, and the local keeper also stopped efforts from Campano and Abel later on.

The Catalans are only just out of the bottom four though, just ahead of Ferrol on goal difference and a point behind Alavés, who themselves climbed out of the relegation spots after beating Córdoba 0-1. Mena got the only goal on the quarter hour mark after Julio Iglesias pushed out a shot from Stevanovic. (23.03.08)