surinenglish

Double draw as Malaga continue to struggle to find their footing

Malaga's Benkhemassa tries to take advantage of a chance at goal at La Rosaleda on Tuesday.
Malaga's Benkhemassa tries to take advantage of a chance at goal at La Rosaleda on Tuesday. / ÑITO SALAS
  • The one-one score away to Mirandés was repeated at la Rosaleda on Tuesday, this time against visitors Rayo Vallecano

Malaga chalked up identical results in their last two league games, the first on Saturday and the second, a mid-week fixture on Tuesday. In both games they had to settle for a draw, unable to secure the win they need to lift them up from the bottom half of the Second Division table.

Saturday's outing up north to Miranda del Ebro (Castilla y León) saw Malaga take on fellow strugglers Mirandés. The visitors were let down by their weak midfield, leaving them incapable of hanging on to their lead after scoring in the 53rd minute.

The goal came from a corner when Malaga's Boulahroud centred the ball perfectly for Sadiku to head into the back of the net.

Malaga's superiority, at least as far as possession was concerned (the end tally was Mirandés's 40% to Malaga's 60%), made them seem likely to hang on to their lead.

Their weakness in the middle of the pitch let them down, however. Danger came in the form of Mirandés midfielder Guridi, and it was a mistake by Malaga defender Benkhemassa that allowed Merquelanz to put the equaliser past Malaga keeper Munir.

Rayo Vallecano

On Tuesday Malaga hoped to give their fans the win they had yet to achieve this season in their home game against Madrid side Rayo Vallecano.

Once again they let two points slip through their fingers, despite a positive first half which could have given them a greater advantage.

Fans in La Rosaleda - 13,616 turned up for the midweek game - were treated to an early goal from Malaga. In just the seventh minute the combined efforts of Juanpi, Sadiku and Adrián made it easy for Cifu to slot the ball into the back of the net.

The visitors reacted, taking possession of the ball for long periods of time, but not necessarily in control of the game, as they failed to make their hosts suffer. In fact Malaga had several opportunities to increase their lead.

The second half saw Rayo manage to break through the Malaga defence. Cifu was unable to stop Saúl from passing the ball into the centre ready for Embarba to put into the Malaga goal in minute 53.

After a save by Munir, Malaga appeared to be more balanced although the remaining minutes saw both sides of tired players concentrating on not making a mistake to keep hold of a point.