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Primera División

  • January 14, 2012
  • • 12:00 PM
  • • Estadio Ramón Sánchez Pizjuán, Sevilla
  • Referee: Fernando Teixeira Vitienes
  • • Attendance: 31000
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Sevilla 0-0 Espanyol: Pressure mounts on Marcelino after hosts held to a goalless draw

The Andalusian outfit was unable to break down a resolute Espanyol rearguard at the Sanchez Pizjuan, leaving both sides outside of the European places in La Liga

Marcelino faces further questions about his managerial capabilities after his Sevilla side was held to a goalless draw by Espanyol at the Sanchez Pizjuan in La Liga.

Stand-in goalkeeper Kiko Casilla was required to make several saves throughout the match, and Espanyol's valiant defense was able to hold out as the Sevilla players cut increasingly frustrated figures at the full-time whistle.

An uninspiring opening 15 minutes had allowed the Andalusian side to settle before they bombarded Espanyol's goal with a barrage of attacks.

Jose Antonio Reyes tried his luck with an acrobatic effort that he narrowly fired over before top scorer Manu del Moral wasted a glorious chance to put his side ahead.

Sevilla's best opportunity fell to defender Martin Caceres but the Uruguayan was denied by a sprawling save from Casilla as the home side searched for the opening goal. The stand-in goalkeeper was needed to keep the scores level once more when Manu's long range effort required him to palm it around the post.

In a rare attack for the traveling side, Espanyol's Thievy Koulossa latched onto a hopeful forward pass and the young striker fashioned himself a chance, but Javi Varas was able to turn the ball away with his foot.

Despite the Catalans' forays into Sevilla's final third, Marcelino's side dominated the closing stages of the first half, with Alvaro Negredo failing to convert a number of chances.

Marcelino introduced Frederic Kanoute in an attempt to break the deadlock but the striker was unable to trouble the Espanyol defense, which held strong against a siege of second half attacks.

Although the Andalusians enjoyed sustained periods of possession in the opposition's half it was unable to work any outstanding chances in the second half as Espanyol threatened on the counter.

Sevilla dominated the closing exchanges as Reyes, Kanoute and Jesus Navas were all guilty of missing golden opportunities to relinquish the pressure on Marcelino.

Espanyol faces Mirandes in the Copa del Rey midweek, as they hope to halt the remarkable run of the third-tier side.

Meanwhile, the Andalusian outfit, eliminated from the Copa, faces a derby match in La Liga against Betis in what is likely to be touted as a must-win tie.

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