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Deportivo La Coruña
23 October 2011
• Estadio de Mestalla, Valencia
Referee: Carlos Clos Gomez
• Attendance: 27532
Thanks for joining Goal.com for our LIVE coverage of the game. Be sure to check out the match report and ratings shortly. I'm Roger Gonzalez, and it's been a pleasure.
That's the end of the contest. What a second half. Roberto Soldado's strike saves a point for Valencia.
90' + 4'
Time is up! The match is over. 1-1 draw from the Mestalla as Muniain and Soldado score in the second half.
90' + 3'
TOQUERO!!!! NO!! Muniain, with the ball in the box, looks to find his fellow attacker, but the Valencia defence blocks well. This is surely over.
90' + 2'
Pablo sends in a cross from the right side that Aduriz skies for, but the ball lands closer to the corner flag than the goal.
Four added minutes.
Yellow Card Aurtenetxe
Assist Ever Banega
Goal Roberto Soldado
GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOL SOLDADO!!!!! Banega sends a low ball into the box to the striker, who ran towards the front post, slotting home from a tough angle after a move left the goalkeeper off his line! 1-1!!!
Moments remaining now as whistles rain down on the pitch. Tough moment for Valencia.
After swinging the ball from the right all the way to the left, Pablo finds Banega, who makes a nice move at the top of the box, but his shot goes way over the goal.
Five minutes to go as the tension builds.
SO CLOSE! Soldado sends Adruzi to the right post with a diagonal ball, and the veteran striker sends his ball to the near post, but it's pushed wide, barely, for a corner.
Under 10 minutes to go. Aduriz just came on to add in attack, sending the tired Jonas to the bench. Late magic at the Mestalla?
Aritz Aduriz Zubeldia
Yellow Card Iturraspe
Little time left for Emery's guys to get back on track.
Muniain almost finds his second from the right side, but Guaita manages to keep it out.
Yellow Card Miguel Brito
Deserving strike for the tough, little attacker. He did well to get into space before firing home. Fantastic goal as Athletic are in control.
GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOL ATHLETIC BILBAO! MUNIAIN!!!!!! Pablo Hernandez, who hoped to come in and be the hero, has been anything but, serving the ball up to the young attacker, who does well to get to the top of the box, before firing to the right side of the net with his right foot, beating Guaita, who dove with all he had to stop it. 1-0 to the visitors!
Yellow Card Ander Herrera
The fast winger comes on for Feghouli, looking to add much-need pace in attack. 20 minutes left for either side to grab three points.
Pablo Hernandez is about to come on, probably for Feghouli.
Soldado, with the ball at this feet and back to the goal, is taken down in the box by Amorebieta, who appeared to be showing affection with a bear hug. Unbelievably, nothing is called with the ref looking right at the two players.
The fans at the Mestalla are backing their team with chants and scream, hoping to add some momentum.
JONAS!!! Feghouli heels the ball to the Brazilian, who strikes the ball towards the near, left post, but it flies wide as he holds his head in disbelief.
A nice combination by Soldado and Piatti sees the former Estudiantes star send a chip into the box, but it's too long for Jonas.
Bad luck for Gurpegui, who comes off with an injury after planting poorly. Most likely an ankle injury. On comes Ander Herrera.
Piatti makes a darting run into the box off a rebound, drilling a ball to the back post, but Soldado can not get to it.
Both teams get their chance on the counter. Miguel does well to stop Athletic, while Banega's pass ends the run for Valencia.
Athletic get their chance with Munian nearly firing a shot from close off a pass from the wing, but the Valencia defence does well to clear the ball.
Llorente comes off for Toquero at the half.
Llorente comes off for Toquero at the half.
Nearly a quick goal! In the box, Jonas had a chance to fire home from close, but the Brazilian drills the ball over the goal off the powerful cross from Mathieu. Another missed chance for Valencia.
The second half has begun!
The second half will be back in on shortly. Send your thoughts of the first half on Twitter to @RCGonzalez10
Both teams have been denied by the post, but Athletic have been the better side during the first half. Will Emery make any chances for the second?
45' + 3'
That's the end of the first half. 0-0 at the Mestalla between Valencia and Athletic Bilbao.
45' + 2'
Yellow Card Andoni Iraola
45' + 1'
Three minutes of added time.
OFF THE POST FOR JONAS! A failed clearance by Iraizoz falls right to the Brazilian, who volley's a low shot that rolls to the far post, hitting it before the goalkeeper's leg sends the ball out for a corner.
Soldado controls the ball in the box, but with his back to the goal, plays the ball to Feghouli, who makes a cut towards the by-line, but his lobbed cross falls right to the goalkeeper.
Miguel wins a corner for Valencia.
Yellow Card Javi Martínez
Five minutes before the break. Bielsa is chatting with Llorente, who looks to be a little banged up. Will be interesting to see if he returns in the second half.
Another game where Soldado is somewhat nonexistent. Banega too. Athletic have really taken over the possession.
Llorente!!!!!! OFF THE POST! Off a cross, the striker, running diagonally in the box, heads the ball off the far post. The ball rebounds, hitting off Guaita's back, but fails to roll in as MIguel clears with the ball heading towards the by-line.
Injury to Sergio Canales, who can't even walk off the field, holding his face while being taken off. Looks to be a serious knee injury as his right knee buckled a bit with a defender climbing on his back. Piatti is on. Injury does not look good.
Valencia are carrying the ball forward, but they still can't find the pass to send an attacker through as the Athletic defenders are standing strong.
Yellow Card Víctor Ruiz
Jonas gets his first chance from the right side of the box, but his right-footed shot does not test the goalkeeper, flying into the stands.
Corner to Bilbao after Miguel is forced to clear a ball past the by-line with Muniain sending in a dangerous waist-high cross from the right. Athletic do nothing with the corner.
Yellow Card Roberto Soldado
Penalty? Soldado is taken down in the box by Amorebieta. No call. It appeared to be a dive by the former Getafe man.
Soldado wins a free-kick outside of the box, but Valencia do nothing with it, sending the ball right to Iraizoz, with no home player within three metres of it.
Bielsa's men are pressuring well, forcing Valencia's defenders to just clear the ball, never allowing them to set up in attack.
The passes for both side are just missing accuracy. At times, it looks like 22 players on one team. Poor first 20 minutes in regards to possession.
Valencia were lucky not to allow a goal there. The defence is not working well together, and Athletic can make them pay. Emery is yelling from the side, asking his defence to play stronger, more physically.
GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOL ATHLETIC BILBAO!!!! NO WAIT! OFFSIDE IS CALLED! After an error in defence by Miguel, Llorente sets up Muniain with a bullet of a shot from the top of the box. Guaita does well to stop it, also stopping Aurtenetxe's rebound, but the defeated appeared to be offside before another rebound was put home by Susaeta.
Valencia looking a little weak in the back with defenders passing poorly, failing to touch the ball well. Seems to be a disconnect between defence and midfield.
Tough crash in the air with Feghouli taking out Amorebieta. Both are up and fine to continue.
Llorente makes his first appearance after Aurtenetxe sends the striker into the box with a long, low ball, but the star striker can't make solid contact, sending it wide.
All Valencia in the early going, controlling the ball well, playing crisp passes, and getting chances in attack. We saw this story on Wednesday, however. We shall see if they can keep it up.
CANALESSSSSSSSSSSSS!!! JUST BY THE POST! After another corner kick, the young midfielder ran diagonally, looking for a shot, and his left-footed effort rolls by the right post.
NEARLY THE FIRST GOAL! Topal touches the ball just by the post from close off the corner. What a fast start for the Valencia attack.
The match has begun, and nearly a goal by Banega! Early corner won by Valencia after the former Boca Juniors star stole the ball at the top of the Athletic box, firing a shot that is saved at the left post by Iraizoz.
Pre-match duties have been completed, and the teams are set to start. Jonas will be playing behind Soldado. Let's see if he can make an impact as he did against Bayer Leverkusen midweek.
The match will begin in moments!
Adil Rami is out, serving a two-game suspension. In his place, the always questionable Ricardo Costa.
For the home side: Guaita; Miguel, R. Costa, Ruiz, Mathieu; Topal, Banega; Feghouli, Jonas, Canales; Soldado.
The visitors' starting XI: Iraizoz; Iraola, Ekiza, Amorebieta, Aurtenetxe; Javi Martinez, Iturraspe, De Marcos; Susaeta, Llorente, Muniain
As always, you can join the action by sending your comments on Twitter to @RCGonzalez10
The match is just minutes away. Starting XI for each team in moments.
Unai Emery's men currently sit in 5th place with 14 points. Marcelo Bielsa's guys are in 14th at the moment.
Welcome ladies and gentleman to Goal.com's LIVE coverage of Valencia and Athletic Bilbao from the Mestalla. We have a tasty encounter for you at the top of the hour as both teams look to get back on track after failing to secure victories midweek in European competition. I'm Roger Gonzalez, and I'll be providing updates on the contest.
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