Spanish Recap: Musah Starts as Valencia Disappoint

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Yunus Musah’s efforts to help Valencia against Rayo Vallecano were in vain in a disappointing draw, while Jonathan Gomez and Shaq Moore squared off in La Liga 2 action.

Rayo Vallecano 1 – 1 Velencia

In La Liga’s lone Monday-night game, Yunus Musah started in the center of Valencia’s midfield and played just over 70 minutes, however the team came away disappointed after giving up a late winner to hosts Rayo Vallecano.

The American was paired with fellow 19 year-old Ilaix Moriba behind lone striker Hugo Duro, playing a total of 72 minutes, completing 16 of 18 passes and setting up one distance shot by Omar Alderete, while winning half of his eight duels.

After a scoreless first half, Musah was key in the buildup to Valencia’s opening goal three minutes before the hour mark. Picking up the ball just inside the attacking half, he slid a perfect through ball past several defenders to spring Goncalo Guedes free on the right flank.

The Portuguese international stayed just inside the area and hit a short pass back towards Carlos Soler at ten yards out, whose shot took a slight deflection off a defender before looping in at the far post.

Valencia looked to be headed to a valuable win, however their dreams were dashed with seven minutes left in regulation, with Isi Palazon advancing the ball from nearly his own penalty area to well within the Valencia half, before finding Sergi Guardiola with a fine pass to the edge of the box for a low shot to earn the hosts a point.

Now with a 12-point gap to even reach the La Liga’s Europa Conference League spot, it looks like Valencia’s European hopes are riding on winning the Copa del Rey final on April 23. Beforehand, they will host Osasuna on Saturday, then visit Villarreal four days later.

Real Sociedad B 1 – 2 CD Tenerife

Jonathan Gomez and Shaq Moore went head-to-head on Saturday, as Moore’s Tenerife got the better of Real Sociedad in La Liga 2 action.

Samuel Shashoua was in uniform for Tenerife but did not take the field.

Despite their overall dominance on the ball, with 68% of possession, a whopping 495 to 195 advantage of completed passes and a 14-10 shot advantage, Xabi Alonso’s Real B squad was dealt a tough loss in the waning minutes, largely due to better execution by the guests on their few attempts.

Moore got the better of Gomez on their shared side of the field, completing 71% of his 21 passes in comparison to a 65% clip by Gomez, but more importantly winning four out of five duels, whereas his counterpart only came out ahead on one of his nine.

Tenerife did jump to an early lead after ten minutes, when a throw-in by Moore deep in enemy territory ended with Mario Gonzalez rising high to head in a cross from Enric Gallego.

Having had a lackluster day by his standards, Gomez was pulled out in favor of on-loan left back Cristo Romero after 56 minutes, then Moore made way for Jeremy Mellot 18 minutes later.

All of the real drama happened in the final ten minutes, initially with Robert Navarro rushing into the Tenerife area and emphatically equalizing from short range in the 81st minute, although Eladio Zorrilla secured the away win five minutes late with dynamic header to put away Victor Mollejo’s pass forward from the deep left side.

The result is an important one for Tenerife, as they climb to fourth, with a momentarily safe four-point cushion keeping them in the four-team group headed for the post-season promotion playoff with seven games remaining. They will be aiming to take all three points when they host second-bottom Fuenlabrada on Sunday.

Real Sociedad B now have a seven-point gap to safety with seven games left, and will be in a tough spot to improve their situation next Sunday when they visit promotion-hunting Girona.


Matthew Hoppe was left on the bench for Mallorca’s 1-0 home win over Atletico on Saturday. The win momentarily lifts the team out of the bottom three, albeit by the thinnest of margins, ahead of their visit to Elche on Saturday.

Matt Miazga was not called into action during the 1-0 road loss by Alaves at Osasuna. The team remains in last place, seven points adrift, and needing a result on Saturday’s against visiting Rayo Vallecano in order to rescue any fading hope of survivial.

Sergiño Dest is recovering from injury, and did not appear on Sunday night for Barcelona’s wild 3-2 road win over second-bottom Levante in injury time. The Blaugrana are in second place now, and will host Cadiz on Monday, four days after their high-pressure Europa League second leg against Eintracht Frankfurt.


David Smith

I'm YA's resident doctor, but not the kind of doctor you would want giving you an examination anywhere outside of a lecture hall. I've been YA's feet-on-the-ground in Germany since 2008, have an affinity for overly verbose descriptions of irrelevant minutiae, keep an eye on YAs in most of the destinations on mainland Europe, and watch a whole lot of Serie A.

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