The El Palo players celebrate their promotion on the pitch at Sotoburu. Bernardo Fernández
El Palo celebrate promotion after convincing play-off win

El Palo celebrate promotion after convincing play-off win

The football team from Malaga city will be playing in the fourth tier next season alongside the likes of Vélez, Marbella and Estepona

Juan Ramón Padilla


Sunday, 4 June 2023, 20:36


After eight seasons away, El Palo have returned to the fourth tier of Spanish football in style after picking up a 3-1 win away in Navarre against Subiza on Sunday afternoon.

After finishing third in the regular season, the team based on the western edge of Malaga city had to overcome three play-off round. After winning the Group IX promotion play-offs, eliminating Torre del Mar and Atlético Malagueño, they crowned their success with a 4-1 aggregate win over Subiza.

This resounding scoreline only tells part of the story: in the first passage of play of the match, Subiza scored to level the tie and start what they hoped would be a comeback.

However, that wasn't to be the case. In the 17th minute, Javi López, scorer from the first leg, put his side ahead on aggregate with a free kick which instilled fresh doubt into the opponents who then struggled to find a way around El Palo's defensive shape.

Then in the 53rd minute, came the definitive blow. Iván Acosta scored his third goal in the play-offs to send the 60 El Palo fans who travelled the length of the country into a celebratory mood.

The icing on the cake came with seven minutes to go with Víctor Vázquez making it 3-1 and confirming yet another Malaga team had earned promotion this year, following in the footsteps of Antequera, Marbella and Rincón.

Next season, El Palo will be playing in Segunda RFEF, alongside the likes of Vélez, Marbella and Estepona.

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