Saturday, February 23, 2013

Real Zaragoza 2-2 Valencia CF Match Report

Valencia CF scrapped away with one point from what was a very competitive and difficult match against Real Zaragoza.

I knew the defense won't be on par for this match as Ricardo Costa and Victor Ruiz haven't played together too much and Ruiz was coming from a midfielder perspective in the past several matches and so that proved correct as Valencia CF conceded 2 goals, though there is a bigger problem right now and that is Ricardo Costa got injured during the match and had to be substituted.

So right now Valencia CF only has one central defender in Victor Ruiz and we need to see if R. Costa's injury is serious or if he can recover in several days.

The first half was equal for both teams, neither being able to control the game and create too many chances, though Real Zaragoza took the lead early on as they got a penalty awarded to them. Diego Alves for being known as penalty saver hasn't really shown his skills there and really hasn't saved any penalty.

Real Zaragoza would increase their lead in the 32nd minute through H. Postiga, though Valencia CF would be quick to respond and Jonas would score a goal in the 36th minute to keep Valencia's chances and give the team the belief that they can still get a decent result.

In the second half Ever Banega would replace Sergio Canales with just 7 minutes passed and Valencia CF would gain a stronger control of the ball which in turn did provide Valencia CF with few chances.

It would be Jonas again in the 69th minute who would equalize the score who managed to strike the ball and put in into the net.

Valencia CF would be able to score again in the 77th minute, but Real Zaragoza goalkeeper Leo Franco would come out of his goal and even penalty area and touch the ball with his hands which of course saved the goal, but he got a straight red card. From the resulting free kick Parejo would shoot accurately on goal, but the newly arrived keeper would save that.

Towards the very end Real Zaragoza would score, but the referee whistled foul on Diego Alves and save Valencia Cf the blushes. Ultimately I'd say a 2-2 result was fair and Valencia CF didn't deserve more with the play it showed for most of the match.

Technical details:
R. Zaragoza (2): Leo Franco, Movilla, Álvaro, H. Postiga, Apoño (Stefan, min. 46), Montañés, Fernández, José Mari (Alcolea, min. 82), Loovens, Abraham y Rochina (Oriol, min. 74).
Valencia CF (2): Alves, Cissokho, Albelda (Valdez, min. 80), Jonas, Feghouli, Soldado, Joao, Víctor Ruiz, R. Costa (Mathieu, min. 65), Dani Parejo y Canales (Ever, min. 52).
Goals: 1-0 Min. 4 Apoño (p.) 2-0 Min. 33 H. Postiga 2-1 Min. 35 Jonas 2-2 Min. 69 Jonas

Player Ratings:
Diego Alves 5.5 - Did have few decent saves, but this wasn't one of his best matches and as a penalty expert he sure hasn't given justice to his nickname.
Joao Pereira 6.5 - One of the most consistent player on the field with great striking potency and defended very well as well.
R. Costa 5.5 - Was a little insecure and his partnership with Ruiz looks shaky, though as time passed he got more confident and comfortable, but got injured in the second half.
Ruiz 5.5 - Not good defensively, caused the penalty, but he did provide the crucial header to Jonas who scored a goal from it and gets an assist to his name.
Cissokho 7 - Went forward to great extend, especially in the second half and also provided the cross for the first goal. Did well enough in defense as well.
Albelda 5.5 - Unfortunately failed to shield the defense good enough and was rather slow in midfield, having been overrun in the first half by Real Zaragoza midfielders.
Parejo 5.5 - Mixed bag performance with really inefficient first half and several mistakes throughout the match reminiscent of his bad form days of last season and early in this season.
Feghouli 5.5 - Was very ineffective in the first half and slightly better in the second half as Valencia CF took more control on the match and had few good crosses, but nothing major.
Canales 5 - I'd say a lacking performance from Canales who had the chance to really stand out and provide something more, but I think its still too early in his recovery for him to be giving 100% and would hope he doesn't start too much and is eased into action.
Jonas 7.5 - Was his usual self that doesn't do too much overall, with the added exception of being in the right places at the right times and scoring two goals. He should look to score more goals like this every time he plays.
Soldado 5.5 - Some reports say he provided the assist to Jonas, but to me it seemed like Soldado missed the ball or deliberately left it. Either way he wasn't a big threat in the match and apart from few good combinations further away from goal he didn't do much.
Banega 6 - Brought in  more control when he came on and while he wasn't too directly involved he had a positive influence on the team and combined well in midfield.
Mathieu 6 - Good defensive performance and had one key interception and few won duels, had also a good header on goal that was saved. Overall a good comeback from the Frenchmen after a long injury.
Valdez N/A - Did not have time to make an impact and he didn't.