A Season in Pictures: Game 16

November has been a bit of a barren month as regards football for me. With Christmas fast approaching, it’s traditionally a bit of a tight month financially and whenever I did think I could squeeze in a trip away, my plans were scuppered by the traditionally erratic La Liga scheduling. December promises to be different anyway with a double-header to kick off the month next weekend. But in the meantime, here’s the one match I went to in November, at least it was a good one!

Game 16: Recreativo 1-0 Marbella (Estadio Nuevo Colombino – 19.11.2017)

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The last time I saw Recre play, they lost their second consecutive game without scoring, with the players walking off to the sound of the crowd chanting for the manager to be fired. What a difference a few weeks can make…

That defeat was swiftly followed by another, which did see manager Javier Casquero relieved of his position and his former assistant, Angel López, promoted to the hot seat. He couldn’t have got off to a better start, winning 2-0 against Mérida on his debut, before following that up with the team’s first away win of the season against Córdoba B. No Recre manager since the 1970’s had won their first three matches in charge, but that was what López was seeking to do against Marbella.

The end result was well-deserved. With the exception of a few sides already cut adrift at the bottom, Group 4 of Segunda B looks like a very well-balanced league this year (at the time of writing, six points separate first and fourteenth) and there’s a real feeling that anyone can beat anyone on their day. Recre’s results seem a good barometer of this, lots of draws and rarely winning or losing by big margins.

It was scrappy, with few clear-cut chances, but Recre generally had the better of the play. Gorka Santamaria was denied by a good save late in the first half and when the loose ball fell to Boris Garrós, he was denied by a superb block from a defender. Recre got the goal they deserved just after the hour with a great team move, patiently moving the ball around before switching it over to the left wing, José Carlos Lazo picked out Boris with an inch-perfect cross and he applied the finish for his sixth goal of the season. As expected, Marbella provided a bit of pressure late on, but Recre ‘keeper Marc Martínez was equal to everything they threw at him and Angel López had his piece of history.

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