Athletic Club has lost 1-0 against Zaragoza after the goal scored by Oliveira in the…
Athletic Club has lost 1-0 against Zaragoza after the goal scored by Oliveira in the minute 27 of play. The locals have not been superior until the arrival of that goal, but their success in the first approach allowed them to play their favourite scenario and they’ve known how to administer the advantage and rojiblanca inefficiency a lot better when facing the goal, while also demonstrating the quality of their forwards.
Cesár, as well as Armando, who made his debut with Athletic Club, have been mere spectators, limiting themselves to blocking easy balls, deflecting or watching the transit of a couple of centres that strolled about their areas. The match ran between cards and even the local spectators in La Romareda were getting impatient because of their team’s poor depth. However, a team like Zaragoza doesn’t usually fail to take advantage when things are facilitated.
Athletic had a corner in its favour that David Lopez and Yeste chose to kick in short, but with all the pressure in the back the ball came to Iraola and his cross, which Amorebieta couldn’t finish off in the area, immediately became a lethal counter-attack, played through rather well and which Oliveira shot, at his pleasure, straight into net.
Our team’s reaction has been non-existent until the break, while Armando only had to intervene in a ball that became poisoned when it bounced off a defender after a cross by Diogo in the minute 42.
In the second half, Aduriz, who already had a yellow card and because of the dynamics of the game reeked of red, remained on the bench and Llorente came in to occupy his spot, without changing the scheme. Before proving Athletic’s capacity to respond, the local’s quality has been left patent with a long shot by Diego Milito to the crossbar in the minute 46 and in the later rebound that Sergio Garcia sent inside the box until Iraola’s body got in the way.
After that first scare had passed and still with options to equalize, Athletic’s turn finally arrived. Llorente shot a header wide in the minute 48, in the 51st, a low shot by Garmendia from outside the area was caught by Cesár and the goalkeeper did the same with a shot on goal by Yeste in the minute 57. At the hour of play, Aitor Ramos replaced Garmendia without changes on the field. In the minute that followed, Llorente wasn’t able to control a ball inside the area and, in the minute 66, Ramos, who had just come in, forcibly finished a cross from Yeste right into Cesár’s hands.
Both teams made their changes in the minute 70. Oscar substituted Gabi for Zaragoza and Susaeta came in for Iñaki Muñoz to play the right wing. Yeste took up the double pivot and David Lopez changed to the left flank. The initiative was Athletic’s, the danger on the counter-attacks was Zaragoza’s, hunkered down awaiting its chance to sentence the match. It had it in the minute 76, but Sergio Garcia’s shot hit the crossbar and the rebound was squandered by Oliveira.
The hosts were left at the expense of the next counter-attack, while Athletic pressed above without results and Irureta’s men had problems getting the ball out from behind which upset the crowd. Llorente once again shot a header in the minute 76 and Ramos sent the ball high from the centre of the area in the minute 80. In that same minute, Irureta retired Oliveira to introduce a defender, Paredes; while Athletic continued putting on the pressure, especially down its right wing.
Diego Milito tried another counter-play in the minute 82, this time his shot went high, and in the 86th Athletic produced its clearest occasion after a new penetration down the right that Susaeta ended with a pass into the area that Ramos shot on goal, however Cesár was lucky in choosing which side to throw himself towards and did away with all hopes for a draw.
From that point and until the end it’s been an accumulation of Zaragoza players thrown on the ground, some with reason and others merely wasting time. In the final skirmish, as unfortunately and usually happens to us, our team has been affected the most with a red card for Ocio, to which we have to add the five yellows seen by Koikili and Susaeta. With the team once again this week in the danger zone, all there is to do is defeat Levante to breathe a little oxygen.