Las Palmas opened week 16 on Friday evening with a 3-1 victory over Villarreal B which takes them up to within two points of the play-off spots pending the rest of the weekend's games. Javi Guerrero had a goal disallowed before he headed in a Jonathan Viera corner with just over half an hour gone, and Viera himself made it two with a well struck free kick six minutes later. Ten minutes in to the second half Portillo ran on to Viera's through ball to beat Diego Mariño for a third time, and Llorente scored a late consolation for the visitors, beating debutant keeper Raul with a volley from the edge of the area. (02.12.11)
Hércules stay two points clear at the top of the second division after a 1-1 draw at Almería on Saturday evening. Both sides are looking to return to the top flight at the first attempt, but the locals had the better of the first half hour, Goitom bringing a good save out of Falcón before second division top scorer Ulloa beat him with a header from Soriano's cross, his eleventh goal of the season. Just four minutes later though Carlos Calvo equalised following a corner, and only a couple of good saves from Esteban prevented the winger from putting his side ahead soon after the restart. Almería also had their chances in the second half, Aleix Vidal in particular hitting the post and Goitom and Ulloa going close, but in the end the two teams settled for a point.
Elche are the team who are most on form at the moment, and they are now in second spot after a 3-0 win over Barcelona B earlier in the afternoon. The game was over with little over half an hour gone, Nicki Bille starting things off by beating Masip with an angled shot in the sixth minute. Bille got his second of the day a few minutes later after connecting with a cross from Palanca, and Edu Albácar made it three with a well struck free kick ten minutes before the break. Before the half time whistle Masip had to save from Angel and Palanca, and it was not until the second half that Eusebio's side came back, Juan Carlos finally tested by a Rafinha free kick and an effort from Kiko Femenía.
Celta occupy the last of the play-off spots pending Sunday's games after beating Sabadell 4-1 in the Balaidos stadium. Both teams started the day level on points, but the Galicians went two up by the break, Iago Aspas and De Lucas combining to set up Mario Bermejo for the opener some ten minutes before half time, and De Lucas himself getting the second from an Aspas assist. With twenty minutes to go the visitors were left with ten men when Florian was shown a second yellow card, and a couple of minutes later Joan Tomás scored his side's third. Olmo did get one back following a corner, but Bermejo wrapped things up on a late break-away to put an end to a run of three defeats in a row.
Alcorcón are now only a couple of points off the play-off spots after a 0-2 victory at Murcia. The Madrid based side started strongly, Quini and Sales going close before Quini set up the opening goal on the quarter hour mark for Miguélez, who had only just come on to replace the injured Borja. Cristian García went close a couple of times for the locals, but then got himself sent off early in the second half for a hard tackle on keeper Manu Herrera as both went for a loose ball. And another substitute Montañés wrapped things up in the closing minutes, lobbing Alberto on a quick counter attack to take his team a point above their opponents in the rankings.
Murcia are now level in the table with Guadalajara, who picked up another point away from home in a 0-0 draw at struggling Girona. Both keepers were in action in the first half, Santamaría saving from Gerard Badía and Rodri, and Saizar keeping out Coro. Jandro hit the post for the locals shortly before the interval, and after the restart Saizar had to be at his best to stop efforts from Benja and Nieto. Only one win in their last eleven games for the Catalans though, and they remain down in the relegation spots.
The top two thirds of the table is still very close though, with only four points separating sixth placed Celta and fourteenth placed Numancia, who were also held to a 0-0 draw by bottom club Cartagena. The visitors were on top at first, Marc close to scoring on an early breakaway. But Juanjo brought a couple of good saves out of Reina at the other end midway through the first half, and the striker headed a Julio Alvarez free kick over the top soon after the interval. Cartagena were left with ten men a few minutes later when Txiki was sent off for a foul on Cedric, but after that the Soria based side were unable to take advantage of the extra man.
A four point gap has opened up however between Numancia and fifteenth placed Recreativo, who move away from the danger zone thanks to a 1-2 victory at Gimnàstic. The Adalusians took the lead in only the second minute when Sergi Enrich got on the end of a Javi Alamo cross to beat Rubén Pérez. Just three minutes later though the Catalans were level, Borda turning a centre from Mingo in to his own net trying to clear. Fernando Morán caused a few problems for Manu with his free kicks, and Peragón headed against the bar later on in the second half. But with ten minutes to go Enrich fired home the winner from another Alamo assist, handing Jorge D'Alessandro his first defeat since he took over five games ago.
Recre move a point above Xerez, who are now only three places off the drop zone after losing 1-3 to Huesca, who are now only three points behind them in the table. The Andalusians had actually won in Huelva last weekend, their first victory in nine games, but another defeat cost the job of coach Juan Merino, who was fired soon after the game ended. With just over half an hour on the clock Robusté was booked for giving away a penalty on Roberto, Camacho converting the spot kick, and five minutes later the defender was sent off after picking up another yellow card. Gilvan made it two before the break from a deflected free kick, and although Iñigo Vélez got one back with three minutes to go, Tariq wrapped things up in the last minute. (03.12.11)
Two of the promotion favourites, Valladolid and Deportivo, cancelled each other out in a tense 0-0 draw on Sunday evening. The locals had been knocked off second place by Elche the day before, and the visitors started the game outside of the play-off spots after results went against them on Saturday. But neither took control in a nervous first half hour, and the first real chance didn't come until ten minutes before the break, when Sisi hit the bar with Aranzubia beaten. Seven minutes in to the second half Javi Guerra got the ball in the net only to see his header ruled out for a non-existent offside, and Depor didn't really trouble Jaime until four minutes from the end, when Colotto headed against the post following a corner. A point each though, and both are still well in the running for promotion.
Earlier in the evening Córdoba beat Alcoyano 3-0 to move up to fourth spot, level with Valladolid on points. Within eight minutes the Andalusians were already two up, Borja opening the scoring with an acrobatic shot after Maestro could only push out a cross from Hervás, and Charles volleying home the second after Cabellero laid the ball across the area a couple of minutes later. Hervás himself scored the third after picking up a pass from Borja just before the break, and the locals could have added to their lead in the second half, particularly when Tena hit the post following a corner late on. With all the bottom four picking up points this weekend, Alcoyano find themselves only two points off the drop zone. (04.12.11)