Roberto Fernández celebrates his equaliser, his first for the club. / MARIANO POZO

All smiles for Malaga at La Rosaleda

Roberto and Paulino were on the scoresheet to complete an impressive comeback against Real Sociedad B

ANTONIO GÓNGORA

Playing at La Rosaleda is a recipe for Málaga's success, of that there is no doubt. After beating Real Sociedad B 2-1 on Thursday night, the stadium continues to prove itself as an impenetrable fortress for the Blanquiazules. It's the home wins that have allowed the team to stay higher up in the table and compensate for the lack of points picked up on the road.

Despite going behind within the first ten minutes, Málaga reacted extremely quickly and scored the equaliser within two minutes, eventually scoring the second goal on the half hour mark to secure three well-deserved points.

Determined and youthful opposition

The victory was never in doubt, as the hosts controlled both the play and the rhythm of the game, the latter being an overlooked aspect that is quite important when playing a B team, as was Real Sociedad B's case.

The side managed by ex-Liverpool legend Xabi Alonso proved to be an energetic one, full of life, offering constant alternatives in their play and going forward frenetically, as if they were headless chickens- but not in an immature manner.

Malaga manager José Alberto made five changes to his starting XI after the defeat at Real Oviedo and taking into account the two games Malaga would play in just three days. He kept the two-man, holding midfield and the attacking duo at the front.

The game plan stayed the same, only this time the players started off strongly, with quite a high intensity and an asphixiating pressure.

Hosts wasting no time

But Malaga found themselves behind once again, thanks to another defensive blunder that saw Real Sociedad B's Sangalli gifted a free header from a corner. The La Rosaleda side bounced back with a spectacular header of their own, scored by academy player Roberto Fernández- his first for the club- after a fantastic run and cross from Antoñín.

The hosts took over the game from that point, with Antoñín taking the spotlight once again, picking out Paulino at the front post, who managed to chip Real Sociedad B's goalkeeper with seemingly little space.

Málaga made sure that the win didn't slip away as on other occasions. The second half was a relative walk in the park after the opening 45 minutes felt like a 100-metre sprint- a rhythm that both sides would struggle to maintain, even if 10 of 11 of the hosts' opponents were all under the age of 24.

Malaga are now back on track and face another away test against Cartagena on Sunday at 6.15pm, with the added pressure of getting their first away win of the season weighing massively on their backs.