Battling Tenerife lose out to classy Almería

CD Tenerife 1 UD Almería 3
AFTER a good away win against Sporting, Tenerife had their first home game under temporary coach Sesé Rivero, who made a couple of changes to the starting XI against Almeria last Saturday.
He brought in Alberto and Dani Gómez, in place of Javi Alonso and Malbasic who were on the bench.
The match began with great intensity, and referee Iglesias Villanueva won the antipathy of the home fans quickly, by not giving a couple of free-kicks for terrible challenges by Almería in the opening minutes.
But he also ignored a challenge by Nahuel on Darwin Nuñez, which should also have been punished.
But the fans’ anger mounted when the next play saw warnings for Nahuel himself and Ortolá for protesting. But the subsequent free-kick ended without consequences.
The game settled down after this scrappy start, with both teams enjoying possession, seeking a way through each other’s defence, with Almeria taking first blood after 28 minutes.
Lazo broke forward into the Tenerife box and attempted a one-two, only for the ball to bounce off defender Alberto straight into his path, giving him the easiest of finishes as he passed the ball into the goal, avoiding an outstretched Ortolá, who was helpless.
CDT tried to react quickly, and Dani Gómez crashed a shot against the post, but he was deemed offside anyway.
Immediately, Lazo was on target again at the other end when Juan Muñoz laid off an excellent ball, placing a
right-footed shot from outside the area past Ortolá to make it 2-0 after 32 minutes.
This was devastating for Tenerife, who didn’t deserve to concede two goals in just four minutes.
Six minutes later, though, they were back in the game. Suso hit a fantastic cross from the right-hand side, into the danger area, and Borja Lasso, running in to the box, connected with a brilliant header, giving Almeria goalkeeper Fernando no chance.
After checking for offside with VAR, the referee gave the goal. Tenerife tried to level before half-time and had a couple of half-chances, but they went into the dressing room 2-1 down.
The second half started as lively as the first, with Sesé Rivero having to make an unexpected change for Nahuel, who had picked up an injury. The stand-in manager surprised everyone by bringing on Elliot instead of Malbasic, who was surely expected to play.
Tenerife’s first big scare came almost immediately from a Darwin shot, only six yards out and in front of Ortolá, who got a foot to it to prevent a goal.
The Tenerife keeper came to the rescue again a few minutes later when Juan Muñoz was played in by a clever chip from Gaspar, leaving him one-on-one with Ortolá, who this time got a hand to Muñoz’s shot and pushed it wide for a corner.
On the hour mark, Muñoz had another chance when Almeria were awarded a free-kick, 25 yards out in front of goal. Muñoz stepped up and curled the ball around the wall, crashing it into the right-hand post and saving Tenerife on this occasion.
The blanquiazul needed a change to get back into the game, and Rivero replaced Alberto with Malbasic for a more attacking formation.
The next chances fell to CDT when the other Muñoz, Alex, headed just wide from an in-swinging corner, and Dani Gomez shot over the bar with only Fernando to beat. But Tenerife had at least shaken off Almeria’s dominance.
The partnership of Dani and Malbasic was starting to gel as they created chances, while heading for the final whistle. But the Serbian couldn’t convert them, putting one wide and another over the bar.
Towards the end, Dani ran out of batteries and Sesé substituted him for Jorge, giving another debut to a player under his charge.
The final minutes of the match were tense, as Tenerife tried everything to tie a game that had escaped them. They even ended with Carlos Ruiz playing up front, trying to make something happen.
Unfortunately, defeat was inevitable and Almeria marked it with a third goal in stoppage time, as Tenerife left themselves exposed at the back.
Aguza scored with a counter-attack, shooting past a deflated Ortolá to rub salt in the wound in the 96th minute.
An unhappy crowd, who had seen their team battle to the end, and the scoreline flattering second-place Almeria, left the ground with shouts of “Conception out”, referring to the club’s chairman, with their team now 17th in the league.
On Monday the CD Tenerife board announced the appointment of a new coach, signifying the end of Rivero’s short reign in charge.
They have brought in Rubén Baraja, who had previously managed in this league at Elche, Rayo Vallecano and Sporting de Gijón.
At a press conference, he assured fans that when he has managed teams, they have performed “very good things”.
He also said he knew how to play football, and that he would try to give continuity. Above all, he wants solidity in defence, and for CDT to be a hard-to-beat team.
Baraja does have a bit of time with his new squad, because their next match isn’t until next Friday (13th Dec), away to Malaga, who have their own problems. They are  languishing in 19th position, and in the relegation zone.
Will it be a happy Christmas for Tenerife fans? Let’s wait and see!

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Posted by on Dec 5 2019. Filed under Sport. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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