Showing posts with label match preview. Show all posts
Showing posts with label match preview. Show all posts

Saturday, April 3, 2021

Cadiz CF vs Valencia CF Match Preview

 Cádiz LogoCadiz CF             April 4, 18:30 PM            Valencia CF 


Valencia CF Logo


After last matchday there was a two week break in club football as world cup qualifications were under way with Valencia CF having 6 players who went on represent their countries. I reported on those players and their performances in this article so you can go on there and read more about how our players did.

I don't know if this break would help the team or not, because I thought we were in good form and really liked the way Valencia CF played against Granada, so I'm afraid this two week pause might have stunted that form. We also had Cillessen get injured so a blow  to our squad, but Jaume has been fairly decent and against Cadiz I'm not too worried about the goalkeeping position. 

Saturday, March 20, 2021

Valencia CF vs Granada CF Match Preview

La Liga

Valencia CF

Mar 21, 4:15 PM

Granada CF

Its been two very interesting weeks as Valencia CF have gone through a possible acquisition by a prince, to some interesting news about the future of the coach Javi Gracia and several players, including Gonaco Guedes and others. While things have been quite interesting off the pitch and finally we have some excitement, its been the opposite on the pitch. Valencia CF have continued with the bad results and the last match Valencia CF lost to a city rival which they've beaten almost exclusively the past 3-4 years! That just shows the decline Valencia CF has had in the past two years, ever since the sacking of Marcelino.

What is more there was no positives to take from last match, nor did I envision any of our players that were out of the squad for that match that would have made a difference! Its not like we had 3 players that you know would have absolutely made a difference, yeah we have Gaya, but the goal didn't come from lack of defending from Lato or that top side, it came from an individual mistake in the center, Cheryshev has occasionally provided some spark, but he's been so injury prone that he's barely been able to stay fit for more than 2 weeks at a time and even when fit he's not a game changer! 

Friday, March 12, 2021

Levante UD vs Valencia CF Match

  •    Levante UDLevante UD
    21:00
    Valencia CFValencia CF

Valencia CF are coming into this match off of an uplifting victory over Villarreal CF, especially as they are coached by former Valencia CF coach Unai Emery and have 4 former Valencia CF players playing for them as well. In fact Dani Parejo and Francis Coquelin joined them last season after a massive clear-out triggered by Peter Lim sold of or gave away some of our most veteran players. Villareal CF have also been playing really well in the league and quite higher than Valencia CF on the table, so it was a surprising, but welcomed win over them!

Valencia CF has won 2 of the last 3 matches, while Levante UD has lost 2 and draw one, so a slight advantage to Valencia CF if we go from recent results, in the last two years Valencia CF has won 3 and draw 1 of their games with Levante UD, so a slight advantage there as well and the matches have generally had more than 3 goals in the last three years, so I'm expecting a similar game, probably with 2+ goals and slightly bigger win probability for Valencia CF.

A year ago, Valencia CF were number 7 in the table with 41 points. Now they are number 12 with 30 points.

Valencia CF will be without several key players for this match, but this is an opportunity for other players to step up to the challenge and establish themselves. Uroš Račić, José Luis Gayá, Maxi Gómez, Carlos Soler, Denis Cheryshev and Cristiano Piccini will be unavailable for selection for Javi Gracia.

Valencia CF squad: Chillessen; Correia, Hugo, Paulista, Lato; Wass, Jason, Christian Oliva, Wass, Alex Blanco; Kang-In, Vallejo. 

Winning probability: Levante UD 23% win, Draw 50%, Valencia CF 27% win.

Friday, March 5, 2021

La Liga Matchday #26: Valencia CF 2 - 1 Villareal CF Match Thread

 PREVIEW

Valencia come into this game off a heavy 3-0 away defeat to Getafe. The team failed to show up or put in the required effort. That, paired with an early red card in the second half, made for an embarrassing game altogether.

Villareal have been poor recently as well, having not won a game in La Liga since early January. Their previous game was 0-2 home loss to Atletico Madrid. Despite dominating the game's possession and overall shots, they weren't effective in front of goal. An own goal in the first half and a great strike from Joao Felix in the second made the difference.

Valencia are currently 14th with 27 points from 25 games while Villareal are 7th with 37 points from just as many games.

SQUAD

Diakhaby will miss this game due to the red card he picked up last game. This should provide an opportunity for Guillamon or Ferro to start. 

Cheryshev and Piccini are the only two players left on the injury list.

Saturday, February 27, 2021

La Liga Matchday #25: Getafe CF 3 - 0 Valencia CF Match Thread

NEWS

Alex Blanco's contract has been renewed to 2022. There was a clause in the player's contract that will automatically trigger the renewal should he play 10 games this season and that has been fulfilled in the Copa del Rey game against Sevilla. 

The club is trying to secure Kang In's contract renewal with new interest coming from other clubs. These are rumored to be Juventus and Real Madrid.

Pablo Longoria has been hired as the President of Olympique Marseille.

There were also rumors that Valencia maintain their interest in Pepe Bordalás as coach. With Getafe also struggling for form, his position has been questioned and Valencia is reportedly keeping an eye on the situation. Apparently, the choice made in the summer was between him and Javi Gracia, and management settled on the latter since he was without a team and could be lured easier.

PREVIEW

Getafe come into the game on the back of a 1-0 defeat away to Real Betis. The home team dominated the possession and chances but Getafe managed to hold on up until the 84th minute when they conceded a penalty. 

Valencia arrive with a 2-0 home against Celta Vigo in their previous fixture. While Valencia played better than in their past few games, the game was at a deadlock until injury time where Valencia scored twice. The goals came from Manu Vallejo and Gamerio, both introduced as second half substitutions, with set ups from Kang In and Correia who put in some good work this game.

Getafe are currently 15th in the standings with 24 points from 24 games. Valencia are 12th with 27 points from the same number of games.

FORM (all competitions)

Getafe: LLLLD

Valencia: WLDWL

SQUAD

Diakhaby has recovered and expected to be in the squad that travels to Getafe.

Javi Gracia has served his suspension and will return to the sidelines.

Piccini requires many weeks to get back to match fitness according to Javi Gracia and will likely not appear until close to the end of the season.

Cheryshev still deals with some discomfort and will not be part of this week's squad.


FIRST HALF

6' - Yellow card shown to Theirry Correia for a tactical foul on Mauro Arambarri to stop the counter-attack
13' - Yellow card shown to Enes Unal for an arm to the face of Gaya
28' - Yellow card shown to Djene for an off-the-ball challenge on Kang In before the corner
31' - Yellow card shown to Cabaco for a challenge on Kang In Lee who had robbed him off the ball in a dangerous position
39' - Goal for Getafe. 1-0. Mauro Arambarri gathers the attempted clearance from Correia, takes on touch and shoots from quite a long way out. Cillissen gets his fingertips to it but cannot keep it out.
45' - Three minutes added by the referee for stoppages

HALF-TIME

Half-time stats. 8-2 shots, 1-0 shots on target, 42-58% possession, 54-64% pass accuracy.

Rough half for both teams with 4 yellow cards already. Both teams struggled for chances and the difference is a long range strike that not much could be done about.

That being said, Getafe picked up a lot of yellow cards and two of them went to their central defenders. Under more pressure, this will force them to back away from challenges or get a red card which Valencia can capitalize on.

SECOND HALF

51' - Red card shown to Diakhaby for pulling down Maksimovic as the last man, thereby denying a goal-scoring opportunity. First game back and a costly error.
53' - First change for Valencia. Guillamon replaces Musah to reinforce the defense after the card.
54' - Unal with a 1 v 1 chance against Cillissen but he cannot score. That was very fortunate.
55' - Goal for Getafe. 2-0. Jaime Mata finishes a good pass from Unal
57' - Yellow card shown to Cucurella for a rough challenge on Paulista
64' - First change for Getafe. Chakla replaces Cabaco
68' _Second change for Valencia. Gameiro on, Racic off
73' - Second change for Getafe. Cucho Hernandez on, Enes Unal off 
75' - Red card shown to Paulista but overturned by VAR. That would've been really bad.
76' - Yellow card shown to Nyom for a challenge on Gaya. Yellow card shown to Gaya for dissent against the referee after that challenge.
81' - Double substitution for Valencia. Cutrone and Oliva on for Maxi Gomez and Carlos Soler
85' - Triple substitution for Getafe. Alena, Kubo, and Timor come on for Nyom, Mata and Arambarri
86' - Goal for Getafe. 3-0. Cucho Hernandez with a cross that was volleyed by Alena past Cillissen.
89' - Cillissen with good save to deny a fourth goal.
90' - Five minutes added by the referee for stoppages.
90+5' - Gullamon with a brilliant through ball to break down the defense. Gameiro pull its back for Kang In but he takes too many touches and the chances fizzles out.

FULL-TIME

Full-time stats. 15-5 shots, 4-0 shots on target, 42-58% possession, 58-68% pass accuracy.

Another embarrassing game. A defeat to rivals that allows them to go ahead in the league standings. And yet again, not a single shot on target for Valencia. The team failed to build on the positive result of the previous game.

The result of the first half was rescuable especially with the vulnerable central defenders of Getafe (both on yellow cards). However, it would be Valencia who would pick up the red card first, taking away any chance at a comeback and would widen the gap between teams. Getafe would grab a second goal soon after. The situation was comparable to a challenge by Getafe in the first half and they walked away with only a yellow card.

Valencia almost picked up a second red card after Paulista's challenge but the situation was rescued by VAR which overturned the decision. 

Getafe kept up the pressure sensing weakness and grabbed a third, and almost a fourth. Valencia almost produced a goal in the final minute but there was no finish.

Paulista in the post-match interview was in tears as he reflected on the current situation of the team. Where do they go from here?

Next match is on Friday March 5 against Villareal at Mestalla.

Friday, February 19, 2021

La Liga Matchday #24: Valencia CF 2 - 0 Celta Vigo Match Thread

NEWS

Following the last game, the club captains, ambassador and president to discuss the result and the state of the team. As usual, the statement that came from this meeting is that the team is united and focused on changing the result moving forward. 

Speaking of the president, Murthy has flown to Singapore a few days ago, with the intention of staying 2 weeks (due to COVID-related restrictions). While he is staying there, Joey Lim is responsible for local duties. This trip has sparked quite a few speculations, with some saying the Murthy might not come back, while others compare this to the time leading up the sacking of Celades when Murthy also travelled back to Singapore. It remains to be seen what comes of it.

PREVIEW

Valencia come into this game on the back of an embarrassing 2-0 away defeat to Real Madrid. The team failed to show up and the home team managed to win comfortable while barely breaking a sweat. Both goals came in the first half, the first a strike from distance from Benzema, while the other was a team effort that was passed into the net by Kroos. Valencia was never in the contest.

Celta Vigo played out a 3-1 home win against Elche in their last fixture. Celta scored 2 goals just on the brink of half-time which gave them a comfortable lead going into the second half. Elche pulled one back early in the second half but Celta Vigo restored their 2 goal margin. Santi Mina scored 2 of the goals for Celta.

Valencia are 13th in the league standings with 24 points from 23 games. Celta Vigo are 9th with 29 points from 23 games.

FORM (all competitions)

Valencia: LDWLL
Celta Vigo: WDDDL

SQUAD

Cillissen and Mangala are in the final stages of recovery and could be selected depending on readiness. Guillamon returns having served his suspension last game while Gracia still has a game left to finish his suspension. Cheryshev and Diakhaby are still in recovery and are expected to be back as soon as next game. 

It is reported that Gracia has practiced with the same 11 as last game but with Musah instead of Guedes and Kang In instead of Vallejo.


FIRST HALF

12' - Yellow card shown to Nolito for a late challenge on Kang In
22' - Goal for Valencia is overturned for offside. It was good team play. Correia was lightning quick on the break with lots of space ahead. He takes an early cross to find Maxi Gomez who passes on the volley to Alex Blanco but the ball goes through to Wass who strikes it first time at goal and beats the keeper. Wass was returning from offside position though.
29' - Murillo gives possession away with a poor pass from the back which Wass intercepts. Wass carries the ball forward and threads a nice pass to Kang In Lee who had made a run into the box. Tapia just manages to get a touch on it to take it away from Kang In and into the arms of the keeper.
31' - Yellow card shown to Santi Mina for a foul on Correia
44' - Well-timed run by Kang In into the box. Correia spots him and plays a decent through-ball. The keeper comes off his line and races to the ball, getting there just before Kang In.
45' - Three minutes added by the referee for stoppages
45+1' - Good play by Valencia on the break following a Celta Vigo free kick. Unfortunately, Alex Blanco overhits the pass to Kang In and allows the defense to get into place. Kang In keeps going and finds Wass on the opposite flank. Wass passes to Racic who picks out a through ball to find Gaya. Gaya puts in the cross but nobody is there to attack the ball.

HALF-TIME

Half-time stats: 3-1 shots, 0-0 shot on target, 52-48% possession, 77-72% pass accuracy

The team showed up in the first half, contrary to the last game. There were a few spells that looked good at various points in the half. The final product is still lacking though. The team put together some great passing sequences on the counter but the danger often fizzles out in the final third.

Both teams gave up the ball very frequently which means less time on the ball for both teams and a comedy of errors to give the ball away back and forth.

Great work ethic from Kang In in the first half. He seems intent on capitalizing on this opportunity and making a mark. Cannot say the same for many other players.

SECOND HALF

53' - Yellow card shown to Tapia for a foul on Wass to stop the counterattack
55' - Yellow card shown to Kang In Lee for kicking the ball away after a foul.
61' - Kang In with a through ball to Maxi Gomez setting him for a run into the box. The keeper comes out and Maxi gets to the ball first and goes to ground. VAR is checking if the keeper made contact with him.
62' - Yellow card shown to Gaya for dissent against the referee. He feels it should be a foul.
63' - VAR rules that there was contact. Red card shown to Ruben Blanco for denying a goal scoring opportunity with a foul. Free kick given at a good position just outside the box.
66' - First change for Celta Vigo, goalkeeper Ivan Villar replaces Facundo Ferreyra
71' - First substitution for Valencia. Kevin Gameiro replaces Alex Blanco
75' - Gaya breaks down the opposition defense with a through ball to Kang In who takes a turn and then plays the ball across goal. Villar gets a touch to the ball and Gameiro attacks at the far post but cannot make contact.
80' - Second substitution for Valencia. Racic off, Vallejo on
81' - Second substitution for Celta, Aidoo replaces the injured Solari
82' - Throw-in from Celta finds Santi Mina on the left edge of the box after a touch from Paulista. Mina attempts to go through Guillamon and Soler. In the process, Soler pokes the ball towards Nolito right in front of goal but thankfully Cillissen is quick off his line to smother the ball.
89' - Final change for Celta. Nolito off, Beltran on
90' - Seven minutes added by the referee for stoppages
90+3' - Goal for Valencia! 1-0! Vallejo starts the play exchanging passes with Gaya just outside the box. He receives the ball back, passes to Kang In and continues his run forward. Kang In threads the ball through the defense to find Vallejo again who pokes the ball past the incoming keeper and into the goal at the far post.
90+6' - Final change for Valencia. Kang In Lee off, Ferro on
90+7' - Goal for Valencia! 2-0! Correia receives the ball wide and cuts inside past one defender and then another before playing the ball behind the defense to find Gameiro who strikes the ball into the roof of the net.

FULL TIME

Full-time stats. 7-4 shots, 57-43% possession, 82-76% pass accuracy

A valuable 3 points, a clean sheet and a much needed win for Valencia. It took a red card and 7 minutes of extra-time to do it but the result is what will matter at the end of the day.

Gracia's substitutes were the difference makers alongside Kang In who showed great work ethic since the start of the match. Correia also deserves credit for pushing on for a second rather than playing it safe.

Next game for Valencia is on Saturday the 27th away to Getafe.

Sunday, February 14, 2021

La Liga Matchday #23: Real Madrid CF 2 - 0 Valencia CF Match Thread

PREVIEW

Real Madrid's previous fixture was midweek at home against Getafe - a game that they won 2-0. The game was fairly one-sided with Real Madrid dominating possession and the vast majority of chances. A header from Benzema to meet a cross from the right wing put the home team in front, before Mendy extended their lead with a tap in from a cross from the opposite flank.

Valencia played out a 1-1 draw at home against Athletic Bilbao in their last fixture. An own goal by Hugo Guillamon put the away team in front just before half-time. Valencia equalized in the second half through a corner set piece delivered by Soler and converted by Paulista.

Real Madrid are currently 3rd with 46 points from 22 games. Valencia are 12th with 24 points from 22 games.

FORM (all competitions)

Real Madrid: WWLWL

Valencia: DWLLD

SQUAD

Javi Gracia and Guillamon will both serve their suspensions this game, having delayed it for the past two games. This will be the first of two games for Gracia and the only one for Guillamon. With Diakhaby and Mangala injured, Ferro will certainly start this game.


FIRST HALF

12' - Goal for Real Madrid. 1-0. Benzema with an effort from just outside that box that travelled across and into the goal at the far post. 
27' - Yellow card shown to Guedes for a tackle from behind on Varane
28' - First change for Real Madrid. Vazquez replaces the injured Carvajal.
30' - Modrid receives the ball wide on the right and plays a first-time cross to Benzema who attempts to flick the ball past Jaume. Paulista throws his who body in front of the shot to deny the goal.
40'- Modric gets free from Soler at the edge of the penalty area with a couple of touches before firing at goal. Jaume punches the ball back into play towards Modric who wins a corner after his shot deflects off of Paulista.
42' - Goal for Real Madrid. 2-0. No urgency from Valencia as Madrid pass the ball around. Kroos to Asensio to Modric while Gaya does little to pressure.  A pull-back to Vazquez and another to Toni Kroos who hits it low and into the net at the near post.
44' - Yellow card shown to Racic for a rough challenge on Vinicius
45' - One minute added by the referee for stoppages

HALF-TIME

Half-time stats. 10-0 shots, 5-0 shots on target, 67-33% possession, 91-79% pass accuracy.

The stats speak for themselves. This was very poor from Valencia. Despite the urgency of the situation the team is in with the standings, and the quality of the team in front of the them, they have failed to step up. 

Real Madrid got away with playing at a very tame pace without challenge or punishment. Even still, they managed to get 2 goals doing so. Valencia meanwhile, not a single shot, let alone any on target. 

Gracia needs to wake the team up in half-time or else this could get really bad in the second half.

SECOND HALF

45' - Double substitution for Valencia. Musah and Gameiro on, Guedes and Vallejo off
46' - Yellow card shown to Theirry Correia for a challenge on Vinicius
53' - Maxi Gomez gets the first shot on target from a long way out and forces a save out of Courtois
61' - Goal over-ruled. Real Madrid put the ball in the back of the net but he was offside when he received the ball.
64' - Double substitution for Valencia. Kang In and Oliva replace Wass and Soler.
71' - Second change for Real Madrid. Asensio is taken off, Sergio Arribas takes his place.
78' - Double change for Real Madrid. Benzema and Modric are replaced by Mariano and Isco
82' - Final change for Valencia. Cutrone on, Maxi Gomez off.
90' - Three minutes added by the referee for stoppages.

FULL-TIME

Full-time stats. 16-4 shots, 7-1 shots on target, 61-39% possession, 91-84% pass accuracy.

Valencia barely managed to contain the damage to the 2 goals conceded in the first half. They also managed to get a shot on target and test Curtois. Other than that, it was more of the same lethargic team that showed up in the first half. 

The commentary on beIN sports was saying how embarrassing the first half was for Valencia and that they would struggle to find another game that was this easy for one team this season as the one they've seen today. That about sums it up.

Next game for Valencia is on the 20th at home against Celta Vigo.

Sunday, February 7, 2021

La Liga Matchday #22: Athletic Bilbao 1 - 1 Valencia CF Match Thread

PREVIEW

Athletic Bilbao come into this game having played the Copa del Rey Quarter Final away against Real Betis mid-week. A late goal from Juanmi in the 84 minute put the home team in front, before Raul Garcia rescued his side in the 4th minute of injury time to extend the game into extra-time. After two scoreless halves of extra time, Athletic beat Betis 1-4 in the shootout to qualify to the semi-finals.

Valencia had no game mid-week and their most recent game was a narrow 1-0 win at home against Elche. The header from Daniel Wass from Guedes's cross would be the only thing separating the two teams for the game.

Athletic Bilbao are 11th in the league with 24 points from 20 games while Valencia are currently 14th with 23 points from 21 games

FORM (all competitions)

Athletic Bilbao: WLWWW

Valencia: WLLDW

SQUAD

Cillissen is currently training and should be available within 1-2 weeks.

Diakhaby, Mangala, Cheryshev are out with injuries. Gameiro hasn't been cleared to return following the positive COVID test.

The three new signings: Ferro, Oliva and Cutrone have all passed the PCR tests for COVID and are available for selection. It remains to be seen if any will start/ play a role in the game. It has been reported that Gracia mostly practiced using the same 11 that played against Elche.


FIRST HALF

15' - Vallejo drives the ball forward from midfield on the counter-attack and successfully finds Guedes in a wide position. Guedes puts in a low cross to the near post which is flicked back by Vallejo to Maxi Gomez. Unfortunately, he gets it tangled between his legs and cannot take a shot.
18' -  Wass finds the overlapping run of Correia. He delivers the cross to the center of the box and Maxi attempts to strike it on the volley. The shot is wide.
28' - Racic plays a long diagonal ball aimed at Correia. Gomez heads it to help it reach its destination before getting into the box himself to meet the cross and head it. Again, it's wide of the target.
43' - Goal for Athletic Bilbao. Guillamon puts the ball past his own keeper in an attempt to deny the cross from reaching Inaki Williams at the far post.

HALF-TIME

Half-time stats. 1-6 shots, 0-1 shots on target, 47-53% possession, 78-81% pass accuracy

Quite an unfortunate end to a decent half. The own goal from Guillamon was against the run of play and the only chance at goal by Bilbao for the entire half.

Athletic dominated the first part of the half, pressing really aggressively and forcing Valencia to play rushed passes or long clearances that cost them possession. They got forward many times but had difficulties delivering the final ball, partly due interventions from the Valencia defense but also due to key absences in their team.

Valencia got the majority of chances at goal with well executed counter-attacks. Unfortunately, the finishing left a lot to be desired as none of the shots hit their mark. Valencia was looking like they had figured out how to break down the opposition defense. They drew out their midfielders and found spaces behind them. At the end of a counter-attack, the Bilbao keeper played the ball out quickly starting one for his own team and the final ball was put past Jaume by Guillamon. Guillamon simply had to get a touch there as Williams was lurking behind him and would've surely scored. The touch wasn't the right one though and gave the home team the advantage going into half-time.

SECOND HALF

50' - Williams muscles Correia away and delivers a cross into the box, picking out Sancet in space. He takes a touch and shoots at goal but Jaume manages to save and get back up quickly to claw the ball away from danger. Great work from Jaume.
51' - Yellow card shown to Berenguer for a rough challenge on Guedes
52' - Wass gets a header on Gaya's cross but it's just over the cross-bar. Good, quick response.
64' - Double change for Valencia. Wass and Vallejo are replaced by Musah and Cutrone
65' - Goal for Valencia! 1-1! Gabriel Paulista loses his defender and scores with a header from Soler's corner
67' - Musah with a brilliant individual run from his own half, all the way to the opposing box, leaving defenders in his wake. He opts to go for the shot himself at the end but cannot hit the target.
68' - Substitution for Athletic Bilbao. Unai Lopez replaces Sanset
69' - Double change for Athletic Bilbao. Vesga and de Marcos on, Morcillo and Vencedor off.
73' - Yellow card shown to Inigo Martinez for tripping up Musah
74' - Double change for Athletic Bilbao. Ander Capa and Balenziaga are replaced by Lekue and Berchiche
78' - Jaume with a quick ball out to begin a counter-attack, finding Cutrone in an advanced position. Cutrone picks out Gomez in space and with defenders scrambling to get Gomez, Cutrone gets the ball back. He takes a shot but cannot hit score as the ball is cleared off-the-line.
79' - Yellow card shown to Soler for dragging down Unai Lopez to deny the counter-attack.
86' - Musah and Correia team up on the right flank before the latter puts in a cross into the box. Guedes gets a shot but its deflected off a defender. Racic strikes the loose ball on the volley but it flies over the crossbar.
89' - Final change for Valencia. Alex Blanco in, Goncalo Guedes off.
90' - Three minutes added by the referee for stoppages

FULL-TIME

Full-time stats. 11-15 shots, 2-2 shots on target, 51-49% possession, 76-79% pass accuracy.

Valencia will walk out of this game surely being the more disappointed of the two teams. With the amount of chances they had against an exhausted opposition, it is unfortunate that they couldn't come out with all 3 points. The three points would've put Valencia over Athletic Bilbao in the league standings, although the latter still have a game in hand.

Valencia's next game is on Sunday February 14th away from home against Real Madrid.

Saturday, January 30, 2021

La Liga Matchday #21: Valencia CF 1 - 0 Elche CF Match Thread

NEWS

There was confirmation in the past few days that Guedes was left out of the Sevilla game by technical decision rather than illness/injury. Apparently, there are attitude problems, same as what happened with Maxi Gomez earlier, and Gracia decided to send a message to him. In training, the captains had a word with Guedes, as they did with Maxi, to try to get him motivated and relay his importance to the team.

The player that tested positive for COVID turned out to be Kevin Gameiro. There was a report of another positive test since the Sevilla game.

Javi Gracia and Hugo Guillamon were handed a 2-game and 1-game suspension, respectively, following a recent ruling by the RFEF committee. This was for the intentional yellow card received by Guillamon under instruction from Gracia which was caught on camera in the Atletico Madrid game on November 28. In that game, Guillamon was on 4 yellow cards, 1 away from suspension, and picked up an injury. Before being subbed off, Gracia instructed the player to get a yellow card to waste time, and since he would be out for 2 weeks due to the injury, it wouldn't matter. This is against the rules. Valencia is trying to postpone the punishment due to the shortage of players in defense.

Alex Blanco has been officially promoted to the first team. The Mestalla B team recently signed Outtara from Lille on loan with a purchase option, he takes the spot left by Alex Blanco.

Gracia, in the pre-match press conference, reflected on the fact that the transfer window is in it's last stages and he is still in the dark about whether or not signings will be made.

A decision of Kang-In's future will be postponed until summer, for now it appears he will stay. Gracia added in the press conference that he think he is a promising player who showed a lot of maturity and that he hopes he will stay.

There were reports though that Gaya was at least willing to listen to offers. Barcelona is lurking about and have reportedly made a 15 million euro offer already.

In other transfer rumors, there were reports that Valencia had all but closed of Patrick Cutrone from Wolverhampton and the only obstacle left is facilitating the departure of Sobrino to Cadiz. In midfield Valencia is currently pursuing Luis Florentino (Monaco), Nakamba (Aston Villa), Edson Alvarez (Ajax) or Lucas Torreira (Atletico Madrid).

PREVIEW

Valencia come into this game on the back of 3-0 away defeat in the Copa del Rey round of 16 to Sevilla in midweek. Javi Gracia fielded a weakened team to rest his players for the La Liga fixtures and ended up suffering a big loss. 

Elche's previous fixture was last week, giving them an additional few days rest. They played at home against Barcelona and suffered a 0-2 defeat.

Valencia are currently 14th in the league with 20 points from 20 games. Elche are 19th with 17 points from 18 games.

FORM (**all competitions)

Valencia: LLDWW

Elche: LDLLW

SQUAD

Cillissen and Diakhaby are still out with injuries with Gracia saying that the former could be back after 2 weeks in the best case. Mangala also has an injury but there is some hope that he will be available. Guillamon and Gracia has been cleared to participate after the success of the appeal on the RFEF decision. 

Cheryshev has had some discomfort and it is a doubt whether he will start. Gameiro still hasn't tested negative and will miss the game as well. There are still question marks as to who the second player with the positive result is.

Gracia was asked about Piccini's situation and answered that he believes Piccini has a ways to go to be match fit due to his long-term injury and not playing much with Atalanta.


FIRST HALF

4' - Yellow card shown to Gonzalo Verdu for a late challenge on Manu Vallejo
9' - Gaya plays an early cross into the box after spotting the run from Wass. Both Wass and the keeper come from the ball but Wass gets there first and heads it away from him. He takes a few touches as the defenders scramble to cover their exposed goal. He decides to take the shot but it hits the chest of the defender. There are some appeals for a hand-ball but they are shut down.
22' - Goal for Valencia! 1-0! Racic finds Guedes wide who beats his marker for pace before crossing. Wass meets the cross with a header into the ground which the keeper gets a touch to, but cannot keep out.
30' - Mojica lobs the ball over the defense and sends Morente through towards goal. He into the box with Paulista scrambling back to meet him. He fakes him and takes a shot at goal, but it is over the crossbar.
33'- Penalty for Valencia and yellow card shown to Barragan. Manu Vallejo was taken down in the penalty box to prevent him from getting on the end of Wass's cross. Soler steps up to take the penalty.
34' - The penalty is saved. Badia guesses the correct way and pushes it for Barragan to clear.
37' - The corner delivery into the box is cleared by Maxi Gomez and out of the box. Mojica is strikes the clearance on the volley and manages to keep it on target, Jaume does well to save it.
42' - Yellow card shown to Morente for dissent

HALF-TIME

Half-time stats. 7-5 shots, 4-1 shots on target, 56-44% possession, 83-83% pass accuracy

Decent half from the team, although clearly would've been better if Soler had put away the penalty to give Valencia some breathing room.

Valencia looked the better team in most areas of the field but that is not to say that Elche didn't cause a threat. It was good to see the team press their defense so well in the first 20 minutes or so in an attempt to force errors. 

Guedes did well to set up the goal for Valencia, beating his defender and crossing into a good position for Wass to connect with it. Credit to Wass for keeping his eye on the ball and attacking it, ahead of all the defenders.

Valencia would have a chance to make it 2-0 after Vallejo was tackled in the penalty box to deny him a chance to head Wass's cross. Soler stepped up and despite his good conversion, couldn't beat the keeper today.

SECOND HALF

Double substitution at half time for Elche. Barragan and Jose Pomares are replaced by Pere Milla and Miguel Cifuentes.

48' - Yellow card shown to Ivan Marcone for a rough challenge on Soler
49' - Soler with a bit of individual skill drives the ball forward and beats a few defenders, opening up a chance at goal. His shot is deflected wide. Would've been a wonderful goal.
61' - Guedes with another well-hit cross, this time low and across goal towards Manu Vallejo. It hits Cifuentes, takes another touch off Verdu and into the post. Soler is closest but he cannot get it past the keeper.
65' - Yellow card shown to Diego Gonzalez for an elbow to the head of Maxi Gomez
70' - Yellow card shown to Wass for a shoulder into the back of Milla
73' - Yellow card shown to Rigoni for dissent
74' - Substitution for Valencia. Vallejo is replaced by Kang In Lee
75' - Guedes attempts to test the keeper from distance but misses the target.
77' - Substitution for Elche. Guido Carillo on, Rigoni off
80' - Substitution for Elche. Raul Guti is replaced by Victor Rodriguez
87' - Substitution for Valencia. Musah replaces Guedes
89 - Substitution for Valencia. Koba Lein replaces Racic due to injury
90' - Three minutes added by the referee for stoppages
90+1' - Yellow card shown to Victor Rodriguez for a heavy challenge on Kang In
90+3' - Guillamon does well to deny the cross from reaching its target.

FULL TIME

Full-time stats. 14-10 shots, 4-1 shots on target, 45-55% possession, 80-82% pass accuracy.

Despite, the uneventful second half, a very important three points were secured and some distance gained on the relegations spots. 

Valencia managed to hold onto their one goal lead for the entirety of the second half without conceding. The scoreline was much closer than they would've wanted and caused additional stress in the half.

Valencia's next game is away to Atheltic Bilbao on Sunday February 7th. The transfer window closes end on Feb 1st.

Tuesday, January 26, 2021

Copa del Rey Round of 16: Sevilla FC 3 - 0 Valencia CF Match Thread

PREVIEW

Sevilla put on a dominant display at home against Cadiz for their most recent fixture. They score 2 in the first half and one in the second, all scored by En-Nesyri to produce a 3-0 scoreline. 

Valencia's last game was against Atletico Madrid away from home and they suffered a 3-1 defeat. Valencia started it out well, scoring first through a long-range shot by Racic. Atletico tied it up in the first half through Joao Felix, who had got ahead of Correia in the corner to score. Valencia looked very good in the first half against the league leaders, but the second half was a different story. Atletico dominated the half and score 2, one from Suarez and the other from Correa, on the counter.

FORM (all competitions)

Sevilla: WWWLW

Valencia: LDWWW

SQUAD

In the pre-match press conference, Gracia said that there would be rotations this game but that it shouldn't be taken as a sign that they won't take the game seriously. He said he field a balance team and rest some others. 

Correia and Diakhaby have both picked up injuries in the last game and it remains to be seen whether they can start. 

Piccini has been cleared to participate, passing all health checks.

It was also reported that an undisclosed first team player may have tested positive for COVID after the game against Atletico. 


FIRST HALF

20' - Goal for Sevilla. 1-0. Luuk de Jong gets away from Racic and gets on the end of the Acuna's corner kick and heads it past Rivero
23' - Koba Lein wins the ball in midfield, turns past the opposing player and moves to the edge of the penalty area before striking at goal, hitting it directly at the keeper.
28' - Luuk de Jong with another dangerous chance at goal following a cross from Suso. The shot just falls on the wrong side of the post.
30' - Jason tries a shot from distance but it's very tame and hit directly at the keeper
33' - Goal for Sevilla. 2-0. Munir crosses the ball from the left to the opposite side where Suso controls before pulling it back for Luuk de Jong who finishes despite the presence of Guillamon
36' - Paulista gets really high up the field and plays a one-two with Alex Blanco before threading a through-ball behind the defender for Lato. The cross is delivered to Alex Blanco who hits it over the cross-bar. Best chance for Valencia.
39' - Goal for Sevilla. 3-0. Rakitic takes advantage of a deflection of Paulista to lob the ball over Rivero who was off his line.

HALF-TIME

Half-time stats. 9-4 shots, 4-2 shots on target, 66-34% possession, 91-84% pass accuracy.

Embarrassing half for Valencia. This was at best a training exercise for Sevilla. 

Regardless of the situation or the pressure of the season, there is no excuse for being humiliated like this against a rival team.

This could very well get way worse in the second half.

SECOND HALF

46' - Sevilla almost grab a 4th right off-the-bat as Joan Jordan heads the cross over the cross-bar
50' - Double substitution for Valencia. Paulista and Racic are replaced by Molina and Esquerdo
62' - Yellow card shown to Marcos Acuna for a tackle of Esquerdo
63' - Two changes for Sevilla. Suso and Jordan are replaced by Oliver Torres and Idrissi
68' - Double change for Sevilla. Acuna and Jesus Navas off, Rekik and Aleix Vidal on
80' - Yellow card shown to Aleix Vidal
85' - Change for Sevilla. En-Nesyri replaces de Jong
89' - Change for Valencia. Koba Lein picks an injury and is replaced by Musah
90' - Four minutes added by the referee for stoppages
90+1' - Yellow card shown to Munir for a skirmish with Lato

FULL-TIME

Full-time stats. 16-8 shots, 6-4 shots on target, 62-38% possession, 90-83% pass accuracy.

No improvement in the second half but not any worse either. The team managed to hold it at a 3-0 scoreline.

A game likes this raises several questions. Has Gracia had enough and is trying to get Lim to fire him so he avoid paying the penalty? OR has Lim ordered that the team not take this competition seriously as he was said to have done to Marcelino? OR is Gracia really incapable of changing the situation at this team.

As for what happens after the game, it remains to be seen what will happen to Gracia or in this transfer window in general as a consequence.

Next game for Valencia is against Elche at Mestalla on Saturday the 30th of January.

Sunday, January 24, 2021

La Liga Matchday #20: Atletico Madrid 3 - 1 Valencia CF Match Thread

NEWS

Valencia have recovered Cristino Piccini from Atalanta this week by cutting his loan short. The player was largely unused in his time in Italy and agreed to a pay-cut to facilitate his arrival. Gracia welcomed his arrival saying that he will be reinforcing a position where they don't have a lot of strength. He added that he needs to evaluate Piccini's fitness level and decide how he can contribute the most to the team. Most likely this transfer will free up Wass and move him to a midfield or wide-midfield role.

The draw for the Round of 16 of the Copa del Rey was made and Valencia drew Sevilla. It was decided that the game will be played at Sevilla's ground, adding to the difficulty of the challenge for Valencia.

The club also announced the renewal of Paulista's contract this week, extending his stay at Valencia to 2024.

PREVIEW


Atletico come into this game having beat Eibar away from home 1-2 in their last fixture. Atletico gave away a penalty 10 minutes in and strangely enough the keeper Dimitrovic took it and converted it. Five minutes from half-time a defensive error by the home team gave the ball away to Suarez in the penalty area who scored from a tight angle to even the game. The game would remain deadlocked until the final minute of full-time where a penalty was awarded to Atletico and Suarez would put it away to secure all 3 points.

Valencia's previous game was a rather dull 1-1 draw at home against Osasuna. Jonathan Calleri put the away side in the lead a few minutes from half-time from a counter-attack in which Osasuna would get more than one go at goal as their blocked shots would fall back to their own players until they scored. Valencia would get the equalizer after a link-up play between Musah and Maxi at the edge of the penalty area to penetrate the defense, however, the ball was put into the back of the net by Osasuna's own defender. 

Atletico are currently top of the league with 44 points from 17 games, while Valencia are 14th with 20 points from 19 games.


SQUAD

There were reports earlier this week that Racic was struggling with knee problems and Soler with ankle discomfort  in training. This put question marks on whether or not they would start. Koba Lein and Esquerdo's names was brought up in the pre-match press conference as a possible starter in their stead. However, it looks like both felt good enough to start with the academy players available on the bench if necessary.

Wass misses the game through supension caused by accumulation of yellow cards. Mangala seems to be out by technical decision and Cillissen is still dealing with his injury.

FIRST HALF

6' - Jaume produces a diving save in response to the Gimenez header following the corner but he puts it back into play. Thankfully Soler is the closest to it and can clear
8' - Valencia respond with a good chance of their own on the counter-attack. Cheryshev does well to beat his marker and pick out Vallejo with a through ball. Vallejo takes a shot from a tight angle and it is saved by Oblak. Cheryshev sets up another chance fooling his marker again and gets into the box and puts in a cross for Maxi Gomez but he cannot capitalize.
11' - Goal for Valencia! 0-1! Gaya squares the ball to Racic, just outside the penalty area and unmarked with no one stepping up to pressure him. Racic surprises everyone with a shot first time from range that curls away from Oblak and settles in the back of the net.
22' - Goal for Atletico Madrid. 1-1. Lemar's corner is sent to the far post. Joao Felix gets ahead of Correia and hits it at goal. Jaume gets a touch to it but cannot keep it out. VAR checks for a foul but none found.
30' - Yellow card shown to Vrsaljko for an elbow to a head on Vallejo
34' - A deflection of Soler sets the ball onto Llorente's path and gives him a shot from distance which takes another deflection on the way out
40' - Diakhaby is on-target with a header from a Soler corner kick
45' - Two minutes added by the referee for stoppages

HALF-TIME

Half-time stats. 5-3 shots, 2-3 shots on target, 51-49% possession, 79-80% pass accuracy

Valencia have done well to keep up with Atletico this first half. They took the game to them, pressured them and threatened them on the counter. 

Valencia took the lead in a unconventional way with a long-range shot from Racic catching Oblak off-guard as it curled away from him and into the net.

Atletico would equalize 10 minutes later with a poor defensive display from Correia as he allowed Joao Felix to get a head of him to meet the corner and beat Jaume. 

Racic has struggled with clear discomfort this game yet has barely put a foot wrong in this first half. He seems confident and decisive in his actions.

There were plenty of questionable moments from several players. Maxi Gomez took too long on the ball the Cheryshev supplied him early in the half, and allowed the defense time and space to regroup. The right side of the team looked very shaky with Correia losing the ball several times and being directly responsible for the goal. Musah has provided little off-the-ball. Paulista had a poor pass to Soler from the back that got away and set up a dangerous shot for Llorente. Gaya received the ball in plenty of time and space, yet produced one of the worst crosses so far, flying over everyone and to the opposite side. The performance overall was decent but Valencia needs to be even better against this Atletico team and Gracia has some work to do at half-time.

SECOND HALF

45' - Half-time substitution for Atletico. Renan Lodi replaces the booked Vrsaljko
46' - Diakhaby appears to have picked up an injury and signals to to the bench to replace him.
47' - First change for Valencia. The injured Diakhaby is replaced by Guillamon
54' - Goal for Atletico. 2-1. A diagonal ball from the back finds Joao Felix in plenty of space on the left flank. He drives the ball forward and threads a ball for Suarez in the penalty box. Suarez goes for the shot by himself and beats Jaume from a rather narrow angle.
58' - Second substitution for Valencia. Cheryshev off, Guedes on.
62' - Substitution for Atletico. Joao Felix is replaced by Angel Correa
72' - Goal for Atletico. 3-1. Carrasco picks out Llorente on the right flank with a through ball. He gets forward and into the box before pulling the ball back for Correa who pokes it past Jaume.
74' - Substitution for Atletico. Llorente off, Kondogbia on.
76' - Yellow card shown to Savic for a late challenge on Guedes
79' - Final changes for Valencia. Musah, Racic and Vallejo are replaced by Jason, Koba Lein and Gameiro
85' - Final change for Atletico. Thomas Lemar off, Lucas Torreira on
87' - Torreira wins the ball from Gaya near the goal-line, finds Correa who makes a similar attempt to his goal but this time it's saved
90' - Three minutes added by the referee for stoppages
90+3' - Correia seems to have picked up an injury as he chased the ball to prevent the Atletico player from going clean through on goal.

FULL-TIME

Full-time stats. 14-8 shots, 5-4 shots on target, 49-51% possession, 81-82% pass accuracy

A very poor second half. After working so hard in the first half, the team was undone in the second. An early injury to Diakhaby was the first disturbance to the team. Soon after, the space left by Correia was exploited by Joao Felix who set up Suarez for the goal. 

Valencia did not have much say in what went on after, with Atletico getting forward time and time again while they absorbed the pressure. The introduction of Guedes for Cheryshev was not effective and Atletico sensed the drop in performance from the team and took advantage. The third goal was only a matter of time, this time from the opposite flank with Llorente setting up a good chance for Correa. 

A fourth goal was very likely still and with 10 minutes left to go, Gracia threw on three substitutions, none of which did enough to move the pendulum of the game one bit. Atletico got their best chance a few minutes from full-time with a similar chance to their third goal but couldn't finish this time.

Two more names added to the injury list, Diakhaby and Correia, will hardly please Gracia as he deals with the challenges ahead with a limited squad.

Based on today's second half performance and the mentality shown by the players, it is tough to see any of the names rumored for transfers, to be make that significant of an impact. 

Valencia's next game is away from home against Sevilla on Wednesday the 27th for the Round of 16 of the Copa del Rey.

Thursday, January 21, 2021

Valencia 1-1 Osasuna match thread

Not sure where my co-host is, so here's a placeholder match thread. Valencia come into the game on the back of three wins in a row, though it's less impressive than it sounds as two were in the Copa against teams from the Segunda and Segunda B. Good news is that Paulista is back, while Soler and Gaya have overcome injury doubts. 


For our opponents, there are a couple of familiar faces: Nacho Vidal, who saw game time under Marcelino and Facundo Roncaglia, who was on loan with us for half a season.


They come into this game with an awful record of 0-5-7. On paper, that makes Valencia big favourites, but so often this season and in previous years, we've upped our game against the big sides and then squandered what should have been easy points against weaker opponents. Nothing less than 3 points and a convincing win would be acceptable tonight.

EVENTS

2 - Oh my Lord, is that Thierry? What a surprise haircut.
4 - Nice tackle from Paulista, though it was offside. Nice to see him back.
5 - Commentator says Nacho Vidal is 25, I thought he was only 20-21.
6 - Diakhaby showing more confidence coming forward, but then midfield mess up. He fouls the guy with a dangerous break on. Yellow? No, play on.
8 - Two crosses from Cheryshev, but Osasuna, who look like theyr're playing 5 or 6 at the back, get it away.
10 - First corner from them and Racic beaten too easily but luckily off target.
11 - Unlucky. Great cross field pass from Diakhaby to Soler who's fouled. Their keeper punches away and Racic can't get it through a forest of bodies. 
14 - we mess about, as we often do wasting a corner playing it short, leading to a dangerous counter for them broken by a great tackle from Gaya.
15 - Oh dear. Maxi and Cheryshev both fumble a one on one chance. Ok, it's later whistled offside but come on guys. Instead of celebrating, the Osasuna coach gets himself sent off. Duh!
20 - a scrappy few minutes. They get a cross in but Jaume collects easily.
21 - Just hit it! Wass with a great chance to shoot overcomplicates things and tries to find Maxi. Chance wasted. Gracia hops up and down like an angry kangaroo.
24 - Ooo, I don't like that, Torres of Osasuna is found on the right in way too much space. Luckily he's not very good and it ends in row Z, but need to tighten up.
25 - Another nice chance, good break on the left but Gaya's cross is deflected behind. The corner finds Diakhaby well but his header is straight at the keeper.
28 - Decent ball across the box from Cheryshev but no one gets there.
32 - Noticeable that all our attacks are coming from the left. Gaya blunders a good chance by sending it out. Wass and Thierry need to be more involved.
33 - Wow, Diakaby's passing is really improving. An excellent upfield ball finds Kangin, but he handles.
35 - This doesn't look good. Racic hurts his knee in a 50-50 tackle. Koba warms up.
37 - my heart stops when we mess around passing about our area with them nearby. Racic is back.
39 - Ufff. A good cross, again from the left, but Wass, pressured by a defender, can't get a good enough touch.
41 - Awful. We switch off as they take a quick free kick, the defence doesn't cover the overlap and after a pinball in the box, Nacho Vidal's shot is blocked by the keeper but Calleri fires home, Valencia down 0-1.
43 - that sums it up, Valencia try and hit back and have lots of time on the left but squander the cross hitting it too long.
44 - we seem to have decided that we need 2 or 3 guys standing over a free kick instead of having them on the end of it. Free kick goes nowhere anyway.

HALF TIME. Poor. We've been the better side but without creating many clear chances, while they mug us at the other end. Not sure that the mooted return of Piccini will help much, but the right side of Wass-Thierry has done little this game.

46 Not to be alarmist but losing these type of games are the ones that you look back on when you go down. Cheryshev starts us off with another overhit cross.
48 - good shot from outside from Kangin but Maxi can't do anything from an angle and the corner is wasted
51 - sixth Valencia corner to their one. Nothing doing again and Osasuna have half a chance at a counter from it.
53 - Scary. Both Diakhaby and Thierry mess up and misread a pass, but they sky a shot.
54 - we start to look shaky at the back. Martinez from them fluffs a shot.
57 - the pattern for most of the last 10 minutes has been: we come forward, scratch our heads when confronted by a wall of Osasuna shirts, give away possession and face a dangerous counter. Luckily, Osasuna are not very good either, but they lead.
59 - Gameiro on for Kang-In and Musah for Racic, who may have a slight injury.
60 - Geez. Nearly 0-2. More poor marking leaves Torres with a great chance but terrific save from Jaume. That one's on Paulista, who looks off the pace.
64 - Osasuna's tactic is generally to stand off, give Valencia lots of possession and ask "what you gonna do?" The Valencia reply: "nothing!" Final ball really lacking.
65 - Uuuuyyy. Good shot from Maxi forces a save.
66 - Commentator says that Maxi and Roncaglia know each other very well from their time at Valencia. Fact check: they never played together at Valencia but did at Celta.
67 - Guedes on for Cheryshev.
69 - YESSSS! Nice link up with Musah and Maxi and Yunus' attempted cross is deflected in. 1-1. Game on.
72 - Unlucky! First Nacho Vidal nearly heads a second own goal under pressure, then from the corner Guedes' attempt is just wide.
74 - Triple sub for them, Vallejo looks the only guy on our bench that could improve this for us.
76 - Guedes twice caught in possession in our own half, but fortunately we get the cross away. 
78 - Please! Nice link up with Gaya and Guedes but Gaya's shot/cross goes just wide.
80 - as usual, we prat around with a short corner and waste it. Kick. Ball. Into. Box.
83 - Manu time? No one is passing to Gameiro and Maxi is drawing more offside flags than chances. Do it Gracia.
84 - Heart in mouth, first their shot is tipped by Jaume on to the post (looks offside on a replay) then their cross provides a dangerous header. 
89 - both teams look tired and error prone. Valencia wasteful in possession.
90 - Osasuna look more likely to nick it and head just wide.
91 - should we hope for the whistle? We fumble around outside their area, Guedes loses it and a dangerous counter is just thwarted by Jaume.
92 - Man! We have a great counter but it just gets tangled up in Yunus' feet. Great chance wasted. Corner which Diakabhy heads over.

FULL TIME
Hugely disappointing result against a relegation contender. You can see on the players' faces how much this stings but the performance wasn't good enough. Lack of imagination and incisiveness and while some individual performances were fine, our defence started to look weak as the game went on. Gaya got caught advanced a number of times and Paulista didn't look with it. Copa draw tomorrow. The next 4 league games provide little cheer: Bilbao, rejuvenated by Marcelino and both Madrids with a home game against Elche. Lastly, to answer the burning question, Nacho Vidal will be 26 on Sunday. 




Sunday, January 17, 2021

Copa del Rey Round of 32: AD Alcorcón 0 - 2 Valencia CF Match Thread

 PREVIEW

Alcoron played their previous game 11 days ago against Real Zaragoza in the 2nd round of the Copa del Rey. After going down a goal with the first 5 minutes, they managed to respond and score on the other side of the half, 2 minutes before half-time. The deadlock would remain until the 89th minute when Alcoron grabbed the winner to finish the game 2-1.

Valencia's previous game was one week ago in La Liga, away against Real Valladolid; a game that they won 0-1. While Valencia had plenty of chances to win the game, it would take a Carlos Soler long range shot to break the tied game. Valencia almost grabbed a second but Manu Vallejo's goal had been overturned due to an offside in the buildup. He would get another really good chance moment later but he couldn't finish it. After a nervy ending to the half in which Valladolid struck the woodwork in injury time, Valencia managed to survive and got their first win in 2 months in the competition.

FORM (all competitions)

Alcoron: WLWWD

Valencia: WWDLL

SQUAD

Gracia, in the pre-match press conference also provided some updates on injuries. Gaya will miss this game as a precaution measure, after suffering some discomfort. in training. Cillissen is making good progress in his recovery. Gameiro should be rejoining training shortly. Gabriel Paulista is in his final stages of recovery as well. In the best case, Gracia expects everyone but Cillissen to be available for the next La Liga game.


FIRST HALF

2' - Early yellow card shown to Hugo Guillamon for a rash challenge.
12' - Goal for Valencia! 0-1! Valencia with a quick counter-attack following the Alcorcon corner kick. Vallejo carries the ball forward with speed and finds Koba Lein in space, setting up a 1v1 against the keeper who comes out to deal with him. Koba takes the shot early, the keeper gets a touch to it but cannot keep it out of the net.
34' - Yellow card shown to Reko for a rough challenge.
42' - Yellow card shown to Jaunma Bravo for taking down Guedes from behind
45 '- One minute of time added by the referee for stoppages

SECOND HALF

46' - Yellow card shown to Thierry Correia for a rough challenge
47'  - Substitution for Alcorcon. Carlos Bellvis off, Jose Suarez on
54' - Yellow card shown to Sosa for a dangerous challenge on Correia
61' - Triple substitution for Alcorcon. Reko, Alvaro Juan, and Sosa off, Boateng, Ale Lamas and Oscar Arribas on
66' - Double change for Valencia. Diakhaby and Alex Blanco replace Guillamon and Guedes
72' - Great piece of individual skill from Racic. He dispossessed the defender on the flank, beat another and then cut inside into the box before curling a shot to the far post. He shot hit the post and moved away from danger. Really close to a second goal
74' - Another opportunity missed at a second goal. Musah did well to get the ball forward on the right flank under pressure from his marker. He put in a cross to the center where Vallejo was waiting but the defender takes down Vallejo and the ball falls to Alex Blanco instead who has shot saved by the keeper.
76' - Goal for Valencia! 0-2! Manu Vallejo with a great free kick that curls around the wall, and squeezes just inside the post. Keeper was sent the wrong way. Good work from Racic to win the free kick in a dangerous position.
78' - Double substitution for Valencia. Vallejo and Musah are replaced by Kang In Lee and Jason
85' - Final change for Valencia. Gullem Molina replaces Thierry Correia. Final change for Alcorcon, Castro off, Victor Garcia on
90' - Two minutes added by the referee for stoppages.
90+2' - Llamas attempts to catch Rivero, who was off his line, off-guard with a long-range shot from midfield. Rivero gets back in time and tips it over the crossbar.

FULL-TIME

Full-time stats. 10-14 shots, 5-4 shots on target, 48-52% possession, 78-79% pass accuracy.

Valencia qualify to the round of 16 of the Copa del Rey with a solid display against Alcorcon. They scored 2 great goals, one from open play and the other from a set piece and managed to keep a clean sheet. This was all done away from home, where Valencia hasn't had the best time this season, and while resting many first team players.

Valencia's next game is on Thursday the 21st at Mestalla against Osasuna.

Sunday, January 10, 2021

La Liga Matchday #18: Real Valladolid 0 - 1 Valencia CF Match Thread

NEWS

Valencia were drawn against Alcoron for the Round of 16 of the Copa del Rey. The game will be played on January 16.

PREVIEW

Real Valladolid were forced into extra time in their midweek Copa del Rey fixture away from home against Marbella, thanks to a late equalizer in injury time to make the scoreline 2-2. Valladolid did snatch the win in the second half of extra time and exerted a lot of effort in doing so. Despite the vast majority of chances in the game, the game still finished 2-3.

Valencia played against Yeclano midweek and produced a convincing 1-4 win away from home. Four Valencia Mestalla players made their first team debut in this game. Valencia started the game with a lot of intensity and took a 0-3 lead into half-time, The second half performance took a dip and Yeclano were given more room to get into the game. They grabbed one consolation goal in the second half, before Valencia re-established the 3 goal margin. Yeclano did get several other chances but did not capitalize on them.

Real Valladolid are 15th in La Liga with 18 points from 17 games. Valencia are 17th with 16 points from 17 games. This match is a very good chance for Valencia to climb up in the table.

FORM (***all competitions)

Real Valladolid: WWDLD

Valencia: WDLLD

SQUAD

Goncalo Guedes will miss the game through suspension due to receiving a red card in the previous La Liga game against Granada. Jason returns having served his suspension.

Gameiro will also not participate due to the injury picked up in the Cadiz game. He joins Cillissen and Paulista who are both still recovering from their injuries earlier in the season.


FIRST HALF

15' - Wass finds the overlapping run of Correia who puts in a cross to the center of the box. Cheryshev controls it, takes a touch and gets a shot but it's hit directly at the keeper. Easy save.
22' - Yellow card shown to Bruno Gonzalez for a late challenge on Cheryshev
30' - Maxi Gomez's shot from outside the box is deflected and falls to Gaya who strikes the ball from the wide position and hits the far-side post. The ball is still in play and falls to Soler who hits it first time from the opposite flank to the far-post. The keeper stretches and gets his hand to the ball, denying the effort.
44' - Gaya gains possession following a mistake from the opposing defender. He picks out Cheryshev who then attempts to lob the ball over the keeper. The effort falls just above the crossbar but it seems like  the keeper had it covered regardless.

HALF-TIME

Half-time stats. 4-11 shots, 2-4 shots on target, 39-61% possession, 76-81% pass accuracy

Valencia will be disappointed not to have taken the lead in that first half. The team took initiative and went forward and creating many opportunities. They dominated possession and had the majority of the game's chances, but the final product was lacking. Certain dangerous plays were squandered due to players taking the chances on their own instead of looking up and finding a player in a better position.

Having Correia as right-back and Wass playing ahead of him has worked well thus far. Wass's presence helps cover the space and defensive vulnerability created by Correia going forward. Being familiar with the position himself, Wass has provided some much needed stability to right-side of the formation. Kang In has also done well to drop back from his attacking position to help create chances for his teammates going forward.

SECOND HALF

57' - Yellow card shown to Soler for tugging on the shirt of Jota.
63' - Missed chance from Maxi Gomez. The corner from Soler was well hit and Guillamon did well to head it on to Maxi Gomez who managed to stay onside. Maxi controls it with his chest and takes a shot, but only managed to hit the outside of the post. Needs to do better there.
70' - Double substitution for Real Valladolid. Oscar Plano and Pablo Hervias on, Toni Villa and Kike Perez off
72' - Substitution for Valencia. Manu Vallejo replaces Kang In Lee
76' - Goal for Valencia! 0-1! Racic played a great diagonal ball to find Gaya in advanced position. Gaya cuts inside and instead of going for the cross, plays a short pass to Soler. Soler takes a touch of his own and looks as if he is about to cross as well, but instead strikes it straight at goal from outside the box, catching the keeper by surprise and putting his team in front
81' - Triple change from Real Valladolid, Lucas Perez, Jota and Roque Mesa are replaced by Fabian Orellana, Ruben Alcaraz and Guardiola
82' - Yellow card shown to Diakhaby for a foul on Guardiola
86' - Yellow card shown to Orellana for dissent against the referee
87' - Goal for Valencia! 0-2! Soler's free kick from the middle of the field was headed away by the defender in the box. Soler reacts the quickest to claim the ball, plays a short pass to Vallejo just outside the area who does well to pick out Wass in a wide position. Wass puts in the cross, Maxi gets a touch but it goes through to Vallejo who has no trouble finishing from close range.
89' - Goal overturned. Back to 0-1. Vallejo was deemed to have interfered with the play from an offside position.
90' - Six minutes add by the referee for stoppages.
90+1' - Double substitution for Valencia. Musah and Lato replace Cheryshev and Wass
90+4' - Musah does well to drive the ball forward from the back and beats two Valladolid players for pace, playing the ball into space and running onto it. He is calm enough to look up and find the cross to Vallejo who is unmarked in the center. Support is coming to Vallejo's left through Lato but he ignores and attempts to take the shot himself. It is saved by the keeper.
90+5'- Yellow card shown to Correia for a foul at the left edge of the area.
90+6' - Close chance for Valladolid. Guardiola hits the post with a glancing header from the free kick delivery. Valencia can clear.

FULL-TIME

Full-time stats. 11-17 shots, 4-6 shots on target. 42-58% possession, 74-77% pass accuracy

A win for Valencia in La Liga for the first time in 2 months and an away from home to boot. Last time the team won in La Liga was the 4-1 win against Real Madrid. This win however, was to close for comfort.

After a dominant first half performance, the team settled back in the second and allowed Valladolid to get more into the game. With Valencia looking less likely to score than in the first half, and Maxi Gomez getting frustrated from the lack of service to him, Soler took the responsibility on himself to score. He broke his usual pattern of playing the cross and instead opted for the shot from distance and caught the keeper off-guard.

Valencia would extend their lead thanks to Soler fighting for the ball, being first to react and setting up the chance that Vallejo would finish. Unfortunately, the otherwise great goal was ruled off for offside.

With six minutes of time added for stoppages, and Valencia having had their goal overturned, Valladolid came forward with intent and almost snatched the win in the final minute of injury time, with the header from Guardiola striking the post following the free kick delivery.

A much needed 3 points for Valencia. Confidence gained that will hopefully be carried forward into future games. Valencia climb to 13th position with 19 points.

Next game for Valencia will be on Sunday January 17, away to Alcoron for the Round of 16 of the Copa del Rey