MADRID – Leganes came up with an important 2-0 victory over a hapless Malaga that could signify its first step to recovery in La Liga.
The two contenders came into the match with the idea of turning the page on a disastrous February, a month to forget in which neither was able to win an official match and both were slammed with five losses, with the host team Leganes getting a couple of ties.
For Malaga, that losing streak kept it at the lowest rung on the table, whereas its rival had been saved in its descent toward the last-place team by the buffer of points it had racked up previously.
It was a battle for survival between two teams trying to rise to the surface to gasp a breath of air.
Five minutes into the match, Ricca and Bustinza crashed heads and it looked particularly bad for the former, but fortunately everything turned out fine.
After a lot of rain and some promising but wayward or deflected shots at goal by Malaga’s Rolan, the first half ended in a scoreless tie.
Once back on the turf, Leganes looked to speed up the game along the sidelines, and it was along the left that the first goal was initiated.
Diego Rico took a pass from El Zhan and booted it into the area where, rising above the rest, Eraso headed the ball into the net to make it 1-0 at minute 54.
The score changed the game’s dynamic from well measured to frantic until Nordin Amrabat booted a shot that looked controlled by keeper Roberto – who was nonetheless surprised by a bounce that got it into the net. At minute 61, the score stood at 2-0.
And so it ended, with Malaga sinking even deeper in La Liga and Leganes adding a vital three points to face the final stretch more serenely.