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Lacklustre Malaga defeated in first Andalusian derby of the season

Adrián fails to connect properly with a cross in the sixth minute.
Adrián fails to connect properly with a cross in the sixth minute. / ÑITO SALAS
  • Almeria took an early lead through Sekou and rarely looked likely to surrender it at La Rosaleda on Saturday

With the protests on the streets spilling into the ground, Saturday's Andalusian derby almost faded into insignificance. The result against Almeria, however, did little to improve the mood of fans who had to endure a painful 90 minutes of football during which Malaga were incapable of creating any chances of note.

Armando Sadiku made his debut upfront and looked exactly like the striker lacking match practice and adjusting to new surroundings that he is. But for coach Víctor Sánchez del Amo, it was a case of all hands on deck, with fellow new signings Lorenzo González and Mohamed Benkhemassa ineligible.

Almeria started the strongest, with Sekou Gassama providing the focal point to their attack that Malaga were missing. The Senegalese came close with a flick from Gaspar's low cross. However, Malaga didn't heed that warning and the forward gave his side the lead in the ninth minute, poking Chema's incisive cross from the right past Kellyan.

Malaga's debutant between the sticks, standing in for Munir who was away on international duty with Morocco, didn't look out of place in the first team but, in truth, had very little to do.

The same could be said for his opposite number in the first half. Barring a deflected long-range strike from Sadiku, Fernando had nothing to do.

Víctor changed it up in the second half with Hugo Vallejo and Dani Pacheco replacing the ineffective Esteban Rolón and Renato Santos. A switch to a back three saw the hosts dominate the possession but chance creation remained limited.

Adrián's half volley from the edge of the area and David Lombán's header from a corner kept Fernando earnest, but Malaga rarely, if at all, threatened an equaliser.

Next up the Blue and Whites travel to take on Mirandés on Saturday (4pm), before welcoming Rayo on Tuesday (7pm) in the first double gameweek.