Saturday, 1 October 2022, 21:04
Malaga CF drew 0-0 against Racing Santander this Saturday afternoon, 1 October, away from home. The goalless draw, which saw very few chances from either side, means that the Andalusians remain in last place in the league despite picking up a point.
Malaga head coach Pepe Mel decided to keep the same starting eleven as last week, with the exception of Estaban Burgos, who came in to replace the injured Moussa Diarra in defence.
Tactically, the Blue and Whites didn't change much from last week's draw, maintaining their 4-1-4-1 formation, albeit with minor tweaks. This allowed the visitors to quickly take control of the game during the opening spell and enjoy an early chance that Rubén Castro couldn't convert.
Racing reacted well with their high press and their intention of hogging possession and dominating their opponents, while Malaga just wanted to do their thing.
The result of these clashes of styles meant that neither side had any depth in their attack, that is, they struggled to make meaningful and dangerous final passes that would have given way to clear-cut chances in front of goal.
Malaga only got worse as the minutes wore on, as the players needed to make more effort to neutralise the hosts and they needed to run more when it was their turn to attack.
The Blue and Whites also seemed lost when it came to their build-up from the back, and instead relied too heavily on the individual players, which in turn led to them losing the ball more often.
Pepe Mel modified the line-up after the break, introducing Ramón to release Febas on the wing. That helped Malaga going forward, but they still found it hard to make it into the final third.
The game started to open up and it slightly favoured the home side, as they came tantalisingly close to opening the scoring with a well-struck shot from outside the box that hit the bar.
The Blue and Whites were starting to get stuck and they were running out of steam, as the second half seemed to follow the same script as the first and Mel brought Haitam in the hopes he could provide more depth.
Malaga did come into the game towards the end as they were able to overcome Racing's press. They slowly took control for the final ten minutes and had a few chances, but none came close to being converted.
In the end, the sides shared a point that doesn't help their situation. Malaga remain bottom of the table on five points, with Racing sitting just above them. The Blue and Whites will next face Andorra at La Rosaleda on Sunday 9 October at 9pm.
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