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Played
January 16, 2011 11:00 AM EST
Estadio de Mestalla — Valencia
Referee:‬ Alberto Undiano‎
Attendance:‬ 47000‎
 
Top of the Match
Pablo Hernández
Pablo Hernández
Valencia
Marius Stankevicius
Marius Stankevicius
Valencia
Flop of the Match
Juan Domínguez
Juan Domínguez
Deportivo
Laure
Laure
Deportivo

Valencia 2-0 Deportivo: Mathieu And Pablo Hernandez Hand Los Che Deserved Win

Unai Emery's side keep up their Champions League challenge with a hard-fought win.

By Paul Macdonald

Pablo Hernandez, Valencia (PA)
A volley from defender Jeremy Mathieu, and a neat finish from Pablo Hernandez proved enough to see off the resistance of Deportivo and give Valencia a vital three points at the Mestalla this afternoon.

The left-sided full-back found himself in the opposition penalty area to thrash the ball into the net from an acute angle, before Hernandez doubled the advantage in injury time and give Unai Emery's team the win they deserved on the balance of play.

The visitors set up with a hugely defensive outlook, playing five across the back and employing Lassad Nouioui, who has scored just six times in three seasons, in a lone striking role.

As a result, Los Che enjoyed the majority of first-half possession, without truly testing Daniel Aranzubia in the away goal. Jeremy Mathieu stung the keepers gloves with a powerful effort, while Juan Mata and Vicente combined to good effect on the periphery of the area, but were unable to break down Miguel Angel Lotina’s well-regimented side.

In the second half however the match opened up, and for the opening ten minutes it was the Galicians who looked more likely, coming out of their shell to create opportunities.

Indeed it was Nouioui who was handed a dream opening, as the ball spun to him on the edge of the area. He drilled his shot low, but Vicente Guaita was equal to it, pulling off a fantastic block to push the ball around the post.

That scare seemed to wake Valencia from their slumber, and in the last half hour they pushed for an elusive winner.

Pablo Hernandez was wasteful with an effort on the break, while Antonio Tomas did brilliantly to stop Roberto Soldado bundling the ball home after Ever Banega played him in.

Then, with twenty minutes remaining, Unai Emery introduced Tino Costa, and the skilful playmaker made an instant impact, creating what proved to be the goal that send the match Valencia's way.

His delicate lobbed pass found full-back Mathieu bombing into the area, and from a tight angle, he unleashed a superb volley that defeated Aranzubia at his near post.

And in the dying moments, they added gloss to the win when superb work on the right from Juan Mata fed Pablo Hernandez, who neatly side-stepped the lunge of Aranzubia to tap the ball into the empty net.

Valencia's win seems them solidify their position in the top four, while for Deportivo their lack of goals continues to be a considerable problem.

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Valencia

13
Guaita
Goalkeeper
3.00
23
Miguel Brito
Defender
3.00
33
2.50
-
Dealbert
Defender
2.50
22
2.50
11
Pablo Hernández
Midfielder
90′ 91′
3.50
-
Ever Banega
Midfielder
77′
2.50
12
Hedwiges Maduro
Midfielder
12′ 67′
2.50
14
3.00
8
Juan Mata
Striker
90′
3.00
9
2.50

Deportivo

3.00
1
Dani Aranzubia
Goalkeeper
2.50
15
Laure
Defender
61′
2.50
7
2.50
23
Aythami
Defender
55′
3.00
19
2.50
2
2.50
19
Antonio Tomás
Midfielder
2.50
28
2.50
23
2.50
7
Adrián
Striker
2.50
36

Substitutes

-
Saúl
Goalkeeper
0.00
2
Bruno
Defender
0.00
25
0.00
24
Tino Costa
Midfielder
67′ 78′
2.50
5
Mehmet Topal
Midfielder
77′
2.50
18
Jordi Alba
Midfielder
88′
2.50
20
0.00

Substitutes

0.00
-
Manu
Goalkeeper
0.00
-
Zé Castro
Defender
0.00
23
0.00
31
Yves Desmarets
Midfielder
0.00
-
Valerón
Midfielder
79′
2.50
6
Juca
Midfielder
83′
2.50
-
Pablo Álvarez
Midfielder
86′

Coach/Manager

-
0.00

Coach/Manager

0.00
-
Lotina
Coach
 
  • Goal
  • Own Goal
  • Penalty
  • Penalty Missed
  • Yellow Card
  • Assist
  • Penalty Save
  • Penalty Shootout Goal
  • Penalty Shootout Miss
  • Yellow Card / Red Card
  • Red Card
  • Substitution IN
  • Substitution OUT
  • Injury
  • Goal.com Rating
  • Goal.com Man of the Match
  • Goal.com Flop of the Match
  • Top & Flop Global Ranking
  • Fans' Man of the Match
  • Fans' Flop of the Match
Results
 
Top Scorers
Player   Goals Penalties
Cristiano Ronaldo Cristiano Ronaldo
Striker
Real Madrid
28 6
Diego Costa Diego Costa
Striker
Atlético de Madrid
26 4
Lionel Messi Lionel Messi
Striker
Barcelona
25 6
Karim Benzema Karim Benzema
Striker
Real Madrid
17 0
Alexis Sánchez Alexis Sánchez
Striker
Barcelona
17 0