Monday, March 21, 2016

Valencia CF 0 -2 Celta Vigo Match Report

This season gets even worse with another bad result and Valencia is edging towards the relegations spots. We are six points away with eight games remaining. Not a good place to be, especially for a club like this.

Valencia CF came into the game with the an attitude similar to Thursday's game, they were out  to win. The fans were edgy and mistakes or sloppy passes were whistled and jeered. However, this game was a lot more even as each team had many chances on goal. There was no clear dominance with possession and passing numbers being similar on both teams. Of course, today would not be complete with our regular matchday refereeing error. And it's another one that's big in that it denied us a goal and a lead that would give us the momentum needed to calm the fans and begin establishing dominance in the game. Valencia CF was on the counter following a Celta Vigo effort, Andre Gomes plays the ball out wide on the left to Mina who plays a through ball for Alcacer who comfortably beat the Celta keeper. The linesman deemed it offside and yet again the replay shows that he wasn't offside. I don't know how a team could be so unlucky with refereeing decisions. And not random free kicks or anything but errors that cost us goals or grants the other teams goals incorrectly.

Carrying on, the game would remain even and scoreless until the referee blew his whistle for the end fo the first half. The second half saw Valencia CF start with a much higher intensity and established a period of dominance but the end product was always mediocre. Either a cross is played too high over eveyone or there is nobody making runs into the box or players take too many touches and the chance goes to waste. Nearing two-thirds of the way into the second half, Neville decides to take off Alcacer and bring on Negredo much to the discontent of the Mestalla. A subsitution like that doesn't show desire to win, bringing on an extra striker does but not replacing a striker for another. To make things worse for Gary, Celta Vigo would score within a minute of that subsitution with a well worked goal: a back heel teed up Guidetti perfectly and he would beat Ryan from close range. A few more minutes later Hugo Mallo would charge up the right hand side to the goal-line and beat Ryan from a tight angle at his near post. Ryan should have saved that but the more important concern is how a right back was allowed to run all that way down the flank and across the touch line with a defender taking care of it. With Gaya having to be taken off due to injury and Neville having used all his substitutions, Valencia was down to ten men and then  it was the Celta Vigo show. They could have had 2 or 3 more goals but they couldn't score on easy chances and the scoreline remained the same.

0 - 1 Guidetti
0 - 2 Hugo Mallo

Ryan (6) - Did well to keep Celta's efforts in the first half at bay as well as most of the second half. Should've really saved their second goal.
Vezo (5) - His positioning and awareness as right back is good but his passing and crossing are terrible. I know it's not his natural position but you can't be wasteful with the simple passes at least. Also needs to sync with the right winger more, him and Rodrigo were on different wavelengths.
Abdennour (4) - caught napping for both Celta goals but was decent otherwise.
Mustafi (6) - I can't recall how many times he saved us this game, was really cool and composed and even tried helping out in offense when he saw the team's energy was lacking.
Siquera (5.5) - Made some good runs and cause some danger before he was taken off shortly after half time due to injury
Fuego (5) - decent performance but Gomes was dispossing other players better than he was.
Gomes (6.5) - real maestro in midfield, did just about everything. Interceptions, dispossed opposition made some great runs and caused all sorts of danger. If he can just be more patient with his passing instead of forcing the issue, it would take him to the next level.
Danilo (5.5) - Same as Vezo, the runs were good but the passing was horrendous. Everytime he passed you knew it was going to end up in Celta's possession. He really can take players on and beat them though.
Rodrigo (5.5) - Quiet for the entire first half but played quite well in the second. Had a good shot on target.
Mina (5.5) - great work ethic in the first half but felt burnt out in the second and his presence slowly died off
Alcacer (6) - great posistioning and should've really had a goal but it was disallowed. Helped out in defense and build up on several occassions.

Concluding Remarks:

Gary Neville will be off to England soon for the international break since he has a commitment to cocahing the English national team. Bad timing with Valencia in such poor shape. He has reportedly delayed it for now to deal with some of the issues and reaffirms he is commited to Valencia. After this game, none of the players did a press conference as they would normally do, so the situation doesn't seem good for us. The remaining games we have include Barcelona, Real Madrid, Sevilla and Villareal which if we play like Thursday and barring any refereeing errors (am I asking too much?) could end in draws or lucky wins. However, if we slip up into a negative mentality and start playing like we used to earlier, those will be games to forget. The other four games are winnable and a performance like today should be enough to get points.