Eddie's Final Whistle
The football season re-started again last weekend after the Christmas and New Year festivities, although only down as far as 3rd Division level. For the Preferente groups and below (1st and 2nd Regional divisions start up again this coming weekend), with results as below. Match Day 19 – Jan 6 , 2019 UB Conquense 0 – 0 CD Alcoyano
CD Alcoyano started the New Year in the same way they ended the old year – another draw, their 8th draw of the season, against a Conquense side that they really should have beaten keeping in mind that the side from Cuenca are in the relegation places and finding their first season back at this level, something of a struggle.
Certainly if Alcoyano are to start climbing up the table, it is these sort of matches (against the sides at or near the bottom of the table), that they need to win although again this week, that was not the case.
It is fair to say that both sides had a number of chances. Conquense, mainly in the early part of each half whilst the visitors come back strongly towards the end of both halves. However, both sides demonstrated just why they have drawn so many of the matches and won so few as up front both these sides need to improve.
After this draw, Alcoyano are in tenth position with 23 points, just three points above the relegation zone so still in need of a decent run of results to climb away from the danger area. FC Barcelona “B” 1 – 1 CD Castellon
CD Castellon racked up another draw – their 11th draw from their 19 matches played – which is not good enough form to stay up.
However, the point has to go down as a point won rather that two lost as it was away from home against a very good FC Barcelona side and a game which many would have expected them to lose on current form.
Despite the draw and subsequent point, CD Castellon are still in deep trouble in the relegation zone. They are in 19th position just one place off the foot of the table, with 17 points and two points above the divisions´ bottom club, CD Teruel who have 15 points.
Barcelona “B” are up in joint fifth position with 29 points and just three points outside the top four places which give you the right at the end of the season to go into the promotion Play Off matches.
Castellon have, over the festive period, released a number of players who the manager was not going to use. They have also brought in a couple of players one being a striker, in an effort to score more goals as at the moment, the have scored just 15 goals all season. Atletico Baleares 2 – 0 Hercules CF
This was the big game of the weekend with Hercules in third place and Atletico Baleares in fourth position coming into this match. But the win for the Balearic side means its all change as they now go above Hercules in the league table.
This really was the proverbial game of two halves. The home side raced into a two goal lead within the first 20 minutes and despite a spirited second half performance from Hercules, the home side held strong defensively to take all three points which allows them to climb above their opponents in the table.
The result demonstrated once again all that is wrong with Hercules this season. They are a good side and are more than good enough to possibly claim a top four finish.
However, as demonstrated once again in this game, they are seriously lacking in fire power up front where they do not have anybody able to “kill off” their opponents inside their penalty area.
Maybe with this in mind, the club have taken Jesus Alfaro, a forward who is on the books at Zaragoza but who started this season at Real Murcia. He joins the club on a loan until the end of the season.
If the player can bring his shooting boots with him and score a few goals, then maybe Hercules can still claim one of the four Play Off places at the end of the season. Ontinyent CF 0 – 0 Lleida Esportiu
Catalan side Lleida Esportiu visited Ontinyent as league leaders at the weekend but ended the day in second position as Ontinyent played one of if not their best match of the season, even missing an early penalty (which was superbly saved by the Lleida keeper, Pau Torres, who was in fine form throughout the game.
The home side were so dominant that you would have thought that it was they who were challenging at the top of the table.
They totally outplayed their opponents and came off at the end disappointed to only have a share of the points, but happy as they got a standing ovation from their supporters, something that has not happened too often this season.
Despite their performance, the point is not enough to move them out of the relegation zone. Ontinyent are still in 18th position – 3rd from bottom – with 19 points on the board. Like CD Castellon, who are one place below them, it is up front where most of their problems are and a lack of goals has cost them dearly so far this season. Lleida Esportiu drop down into second place after this draw, with 37 points, one point less than the new league leaders, Villarreal “B”. Villarreal CF “B” 1 – 0 CF Badalona
Villarreal got the New Year off to a winning start and, in doing so coupled with Lleida dropping points, go back to the top of the league.
It was very much "one way traffic" in this game and the only surprise was that the margin of victory was not greater against a Badalona side that defended well but showed very little as an attacking force.
The only goal of the game arrived in the 66th minute when Mario Gonzalez ran onto a through ball to beat the visiting keeper with a low shot.
Chances both before and after came thick and fast for the Villarreal reserves who this season appear to be stronger and more mature than in previous campaigns. RCD Español “B” 1 – 3 Valencia CF Mestalla
It has been months since Valencia Mestalla took all three points from a league game and during those difficult months, the club has gone from being near the top of the division to stagnating in the relegation places.
This match, away at another of the reserve sides, Español “B” started in the worst way possible for Mestalla as they went 1-0 down in the very first minute of the game. But two goals from Fran Navarro on 10 and 44 minutes meant they went into the break with their noses in front.
The second half saw chances for both teams in what was an excellent show case for football in this group but it was the visitors who once again scored next.
This time it was Pascu who, in the 86th minute put the game beyond doubt and gave three very valuable points to the Valencia reserve side, Mestalla.
This win moves Mestalla up to 16th in the table with 20 points, the same points total as UB Conquense in 17th position and in the last of the automatic relegation places. But things are very tight in this group with just three points separating RCD Español “B” in 9th position with the first of the relegation places. CD Ebro 1 – 1 Atletico Levante UD
Atletico Levante managed another point in their battle to finish the season in one of the safety places. This time it was away at CD Ebro who are one in a group of clubs chasing them in the league table.
The Levante reserves did well to come from behind in this game after Gerrit had given the home side an early lead. That lead was cancelled out in the 63rd minute by Levante forward Joel who gave his side a deserved share of the points and keeps them in 11th position with 22 points. Non Valencia based clubs CE Sabadell FC 0 – 0 UE Olot CF Peralada 2 – 1 SD Ejea CD Teruel – UE Cornella Match Day 20 – Jan 13, 2019 CD Teruel – Atletico Levante UD CD Ebro – Valencia CF Mestalla Villarreal CF “B” – Lleida Esportiu Ontinyent CF – Hercules CF Atletico Baleares – CD Castellon FC Barcelona “B” – CD Alcoyano UE Cornella – UE Olot RCD Español “B” – CF Badalona UB Conquense – SD Ejea CF Peralada – CE Sabadell FC La Nucia take over at the top of this group and are crowned the “Winter Champions” which is an honory title they use her in Spain to the club in each of the divisions that finish the first half of the season in top spot. With Olimpic Xativa only managing to draw at home against Eldense, La Nucia took full advantage of that slip up following their win away at Vilamarxant to climb above Olimpic into top spot. They have 38 points whilst Olimpic are on 37 points.
Atletico Saguntino and Orihuela CF are just behind the top two with 35 points whilst Eldense and Atzeneta both have 33 points.
Paiporta CF are still at the foot of the table. They lost 2-4 at home to Silla and have 11 points – six points behind the first safety place which is currently occupied by Elche Ilicitano in 17th position with 17 points.
One place off the bottom of the table is Paterna with 15 points whilst Torre Levante, on 16 points, are the side currently in the final relegation place. Match Day 19 – Jan 6, 2019 Atzeneta UE 2 – 0 Novelda CF Crevillente Deportivo 1 – 1 CD Acero Paterna CF 1 – 1 FC Jove Español CD Roda 1 – 1 Atletico Saguntino CF Vilamarxant 0 – 2 CF La Nucia UD Alzira 0 – 1 Orihuela CF UD Rayo Ibense 1 – 1 Elche Ilicitano CD Olimpic Xativa 1 – 1 CD Eldense Paiporta CF 2 – 4 Silla CF CF Torre Levante 1 – 0 Villarreal CF “C” Match Day 20 – Jan 13, 2019 CD Olimpic Xativa – Silla CF UD Rayo Ibense – CD Eldense CF Torre Levante – Elche Ilicitano CF Villarreal CF “C” – Atletico Saguntino Paiporta CF – Orihuela CF UD Alzira – CF La Nucia Crevillente Deportivo – FC Jove Español Atzeneta UE – CD Acero CF Vilamarxant – Novelda CF Paterna CF – CD Roda The Preferente groups all return to league action this coming weekend with the following matches: Group 1 Match Day 18 – Jan 13, 2019 CD Burriana – CF Nules Club Almenara Atletic – CF Albuixech CD Castellon “B” – CF Huracan Moncada CF CF Borriol – CD Cabanes CD Benicarlo – UD Vall de Uxo CF San Pedro – CF Rafalafena Castellon CD Almazora – UD Puzol CD LAlcora´ – CF Sant Jordi Alqueries CF – CD Onda Group 2 Match Day 18 – Jan 13, 2019 Discobolo-La Torre AC – UD Juventud Barrio Cristo CD Utiel – Mislata CF Atletico Vallbonense – Torrent CF Rayo S. Antonio – Alcasser CF CF Recambios Colon Catarroja – UD Aldaia CF CD Serranos – Burjassot CF Ribarroja CF – UD CastellarOliveral UD Quart de Poblet – SC Requena CD Buñol – CD San Marcelino Group 3 Match Day 18 – Jan 13, 2019 Racing Rafelcofer CF – Muro CF UD Portuarios – UD Alginet UD Carcaixent – Pego CF CD Javea – LOlleria´ CF CD Denia – CD Enguera UD Castellonense – CD Contestano CD Monte-Sion – UD Beniganim CF Tous – UE LAlcudia´ CF UE Gandia – CF UE Tavernes Group 4 Match Day 18 – Jan 13, 2019 Orihuela CF “B” – Hercules CF “B” Benferri CF – Aspe UD Intercity San Juan – Villena CF Benidorm CD – Elda Industrial CF CF UD Ilicitana – Callosa Deportiva UD Horadada – CD Torrevieja Villajoyosa CF – CF Independiente Alicante FB Redovan CF – CD Universidad Alicante CD Almoradi – CD Thader