Spanish Recap: de la Torre Debuts, Musah Keeps Starting Role

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Yunus Musah continued his staring role in Gennaro Gattuso’s midfield for Valencia in their loss in Bilbao while Luca de la Torre made is Spanish debut with a short cameo in Celta Vigo’s predictable loss to Real Madrid

Athletic Bilbao 1 – 0 FC Valencia

Yunus Musah played just over an hour for Valencia against Athletic Bilbao on Sunday night, but neither he nor the rest of his teammates were able to break through and prevent the narrow loss.

The American played 62 minutes on the right side of a three-man midfield before making way for Nico González. During his time, he had 50 ball contacts, completed 92% of his 37 passing attempts, attempted one shot, won both of his tackle attempts, and half of his six duels.

He also picked up a bizarre yellow card after 23 minutes for forgetting wasn’t on a basketball court, when he tried to stuff a throw-in from an opposing player.

The lone goal of the game came at the 42 minute-mark, following a bad giveaway deep in Valencia’s territory. Mikel Vesga recovered the ball at the edge of the final third and slid it forward to Alex Berenguer, whose blast to the lower left corner could only be slight deflected by keeper Giorgi Mamardashvili on its way into the net.

The hosts nearly had a second goal with nine minutes left in regulation when Nico Williams knocked in a cross from his older brother Iñaki, however the score was correctly ruled offside, with the score ending at 1-0 to the hosts.

Valencia have another tough opponent directly ahead, as they will host Atletico Madrid on Monday night.

Espanyol 0 – 2 Rayo Vallecano

Luca Koleosho continued to get valuable minutes for Espanyol on Friday night, playing fro the 77th minute onwards in their difficult shut-out home loss against Rayo Vallecano.

All of the significant action took place long before Koleosho stepped onto the field, with both teams already having been reduced to ten men within the half-hour, following the second yellow for Rayo’s Florian Lejeune and a straight red for Espanyol’s Sergi Gomez.

Five minutes before the half, Isi Palazon scored from well outside the area after a short one-two with Unai Lopez for the Rayo lead. Pathé Ciss made it two for the visitors with a short tap into the open net, after Álvaro Garcia showed a bit of magic to draw the attention of the entire defense to his direction.

The 17 year-old Koleosho entered in the 77th minute, and was situated primarily in a left-sided attacking role. During his 13 minutes plus added time, he had 11 total ball contacts, completed six of seven passes, beat opposing defenders on one of three attempted dribbles, and won one of three duels.

Koleosho will hope to continue earning playing time, beginning with Real Madrid’s visit to the RCDE Stadium on Sunday night.

Highlights of the game can be seen here.

CD Tenerife 1 – 1 CD Lugo

Samuel Shashoua started up front for Tenerife as they welcomed CD Lugo on Sunday night, as the team did just enough to take all the points at home.

The London-born American played 70 minutes up front for the Blanquiazules, and was a nuisance for the opposing defense. He had 48 total ball contacts, six total shots, one chance created, and won four of five dribble attempts, and completed 22 of 24 passes.

Tenerife took the lead after 37 minutes; after Shashoua’s attempted cross from the left was deflected backwards, it eventually landed in front of Jose Angel Jurado for a low, left-footed strike to the lower right corner.

Tenerife were put into a tough spot after Alex Corredera was sent off in the 59th minute for a reckless tackle, which gave Lugo the opening to equalize six minuets later when Alberto Rodriguez headed in a free kick from Jose Ricardo

While Lugo were also reduced to ten men when Rodriguez was given his marching orders with ten minutes left, the game still ended with each team earning one point in the draw.

Tenerife still have 42 games left in the grueling season, beginning with Saturday’s visit to Levante.

Highlights of the game can be seen here.

SD Ponferradina 2 – 1 UD Ibiza

The younger Shashoua, Armando, played the full game in UD Ibiza’s central midfield on Monday night as they were forced to fly home empty handed after their loss at Ponferradina

Shashoua started alongside Pape Kouli Diop in the heart of a four-man midfield, completing 83% of his 40 passes, hitting three passes into the final third, taking one corner, making five recoveries and winning one of three duels.

The hosts were generally in control throughout, with 57% of possession, and took the lead at the 36-minute mark when Yuri beat a crowd of Ibiza defenders to one-time his shot from close range.

Dario Poveda did pull the visitors even four minutes before the half with a fine strike from the edge of the area to the upper right corner, but Yuri netted the winner from the spot in the 50th minute, after a questionable VAR call for an inadvertent handball by Isma Ruiz.

The result leaves Ibiza winless and in the bottom four following the round, and they will have a tough ask when they host promotion favorites Alaves on Sunday.

Highlights of the game can be seen here.


Luca de la Torre made his debut for Celta Vigo on Saturday night, coming in as an 87th-minute substitute after their were already thoroughly beaten by a 4-1 scoreline at home by Real Madrid. In his short appearance, the American completed all seven of is passing attempts. Next up for the team is a visit to Girona on Friday.

Sergiño Dest was not in Barcelona’s squad for their 4-1 road win over hosts Real Sociedad on Sunday. Jonathan Gomez was not suited up for the home team, and is still working primarily with their reserves.


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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