Monday May 2, 2011 Day 34 Finished Estadio Cornellá-El Prat

RCD Espanyol 2 - 1 Athletic Bilbao

  • Osvaldo 35’
  • Alonso 77’
  • Susaeta 43’

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  1. Espanyol overcome Athletic Bilbao

    Espanyol overcome Athletic Bilbao

    Espanyol re-ignited their hopes of qualification for next season's Europa League with a 2-1 win at home to Athletic Bilbao. More

  • Live Commentary

    Time:90'
    • RCD Espanyol
    • Athletic Bilbao
    • 90+5' It is! Espanyol are back in the hunt for European football next season! Their first win in 5 means Bilbao are far from safe in the qualification zone just yet. Four matchdays to go, we could be in for an interesting race to Europe!
    • 90+4 Espanyol want a whistle, but the referee allows one last free kick to come into their box. It ends with another offside decision. Is this it now?
    • 90+3' ...but nothing comes of it. I believe it was 3 minutes, so this is the final one now.
    • 90+2' It's the home side who have it, but Osvaldo is offside. Last roll of the dice now from Bilbao as a long free-kick heads into the Espanyol half...
    • 90+1' Haven't seen an indication for how much added time yet, but Bilbao are struggling to make any late attacks regardless. I think this could be all.
    • 90' Final sub sees Espanyol replace Verdu with Lopez.
    • 88' Iraola is caught offside. Bilbao are getting a little desperate now. Time is ticking.
    • 87' Llorente has the ball on the edge of the area, but attempts to tee up an onrushing team-mate and Bilbao lose possession.
    • 86' Javi Martinez gets booked for a foul on Fonte while trying desperately to keep a Bilbao attack alive.
    • 84' ....so he attempts to chip a ball in, only for it to miss the sea of players and go off for a goal kick.
    • 83' Finally, at the third time of asking, Susaeta goes down because of a legitimate foul. This one is a bit too far out for a shot...
    • 82' A good Kameni save forces a corner, the delivery reaches the far post and is headed back across goal but nobody in a green shirt can convert the equaliser!
    • 81' Rui Fonte earns a yellow card for a foul - the brother of Southampton defender Jose has only been on the pitch for five minutes.
    • 79' Javi Martinez leans on a defender to flick on a ball on the edge of the area. Free kick Espanyol.
    • 77' Osvaldo's cross-shot hybrid fell to the lurking Alonso at the far post to tap in from two yards, and the gap is set to be cut to three points with four games to play if they hold on. The Europa League dream lives!
    • 76' GOAL! ESPANYOL HAVE DONE IT AGAIN! Ivan Alonso from close range!
    • 75' And here come two of them at once: Luis Garcia comes off for Isaias, while Fonte replaces Marquez.
    • 74' This is a good period from Bilbao. But they have no remaining subs, while Espanyol can make as many as three tactical changes.
    • 73' Susaeta goes down gently AGAIN. Worse, it was a good ball to find him, for which he could easily have pushed forward and had a shot at goal. Horrible to see players with so little faith in their own abilities that they keep looking for shortcuts. Thankfully, he's told to get up by the referee.
    • 72' Verdu's raking ball into the box has to be headed away from the path of Osvaldo.
    • 71' Orbaiz gives away a free-kick in Espanyol's back third, in his first major contribution on the pitch.
    • 70' One thing Bilbao do now have is more height on the pitch. With the hosts now controlling the game like Athletic Club had in the first period, perhaps Caparros is looking for the winner on the break or from a set-piece.
    • 69' Verdu attempts to meet Alonso's run, but his ball is extremely heavy and easy for Iraizoz to take.
    • 67' I mean, with a six-point gap a draw favours the away side nonetheless, but with four matchdays to go the win would surely seal their Europa League qualification for 2011/12?
    • 66' Muniain comes off for Ustaritz - that's a forward for a defender. Curious decision by Caparros, that.
    • 65' Another strong run from Osvaldo leads to a shot that forces a save and a corner from Iraizoz - didn't look like it'd be going on target, anyway, to be honest...
    • 64' Alonso looks for Osvaldo, but Bilbao break it up and counter - that too comes to nothing.
    • 63' A long attacking throw from Bilbao is cleared by the home team.
    • 62' These two sides haven't drawn much this season - just three each - so you'd expect some extra developments before we're done this evening.
    • 60' Callejon picks out Amat with a fine ball into the box... he takes a touch but that enables Iraizoz to come out and block the shot. That was a massive chance for the hosts to retake the lead!
    • 59' Another switch for the visitors just before the hour mark - Toquero comes off for Orbaiz.
    • 58' Espanyol pressure ends when skipper Luis Garcia fouls his marker out on the right flank.
    • 57' Iraizoz has to punch away a teasing driven cross. Home side are taking over in the dominance stakes from their guests in this half.
    • 56' Ekiza again denies Osvaldo - the defender is doing a superb job keeping Espanyol's big attacking threat neutered so far (outside of the goal, of course).
    • 55' Bilbao stayed in the same hotel being used by the Real Madrid players ahead of tomorrow's Champions League semi-final, 2nd leg at Camp Nou. Bet you didn't know that.
    • 53' Verdu and Osvaldo recreate the play from minutes ago which required a superb interception from Ekiza, but this time the Argentine is offside.
    • 52' Marquez' inswinger is headed clear, Espanyol retain possession and work it once more from their own half.
    • 51' Once again, no luck for the home side from these short corner plays. They win a free-kick out on the left, though.
    • 50' The corner comes to nothing, but the hosts retain possession and win another corner.
    • 49' Osvaldo is onside! He looks clear, but Ekiza catches him up and intercepts! Corner Espanyol
    • 48' Callejon collects a long ball into the Bilbao box, but is offside.
    • 47' Llorente has come on for the second half. He replaces Iturraspe.
    • 46' The second half is underway!
    • 45+2' Half-time here, and the Espanyol players surround the official at the beginning of the break. I can feel their angst, after those two extremely controversial decisions. Still, far from dull now.
    • 45+1' Alonso pounces on a spill by Iraizoz, and is felled by the goalkeeper. Somehow, no penalty is given. One of those scenarios where surely it has to be either a penalty or a yellow for diving, and it looked like there was contact.
    • 45' One minute of added time to be played.
    • 44' Beautiful outside-curler from Susaeta inside the right-hand post - but that set play was bought and paid for by the man himself and there was no contact whatsoever, it would seem, in the build up. Verdu, the man alleged to have fouled him, was booked, to make things worse.
    • 43' AND SUSAETA PUTS AWAY THE FREE-KICK!
    • 42' Susaeta wins a free-kick on the right-hand edge of the penalty area. He went down rather easily there, when he blatantly had options for a pass. I really think he was after that from the start.
    • 41' Ekiza heads a Luis Garcia cross over for a corner to the home side, but the set play comes to nothing.
    • 40' Iraola is flagged offside at the end of another lengthy of sequence of Bilbao passes. The home defence are remaining dogged thus far.
    • 38' Replays suggest the visitors may have had a case regarding an offside - looked ever so slightly ahead. The amount of deflections involved before the shot probably didn't help the officials.
    • 37' It was just what this game needed. Barring the occasional flowing attack (which inevitably went nowhere), this was a very dull game. Now can Bilbao step up and make their prior dominance count?
    • 36' Remember what I said about Bilbao dominating but looking frail at the back? Static defending expecting an offside flag allows Osvaldo to control, turn and coolly fire in off the post after a deflected shot from outside the box bounced his way. First blood home side.
    • 35' GOAL ESPANYOL! Osvaldo strikes again!
    • 34' Was that an elbow of Galan's catching Toquero? Replays certainly make it look that way. Nothing was given, anyway.
    • 33' The corner comes off Osvaldo and goes off for another corner from the right once more. Kameni collects after a Castillo shot is deflected his way.
    • 32' Iturraspe wins Bilbao another corner.
    • 31' Javi Martinez and Muinain look dangerous down the left, but are again pushed back unable to penetrate this home defence.
    • 29' This has been almost all Athletic, but they've shown a few holes whenever the hosts have been able to attack.
    • 28' Susaeta pushes forward again but good defending forces the visitors back once more to retain possession.
    • 27' Garcia has a good record in this fixture, scoring two winning goals against Bilbao in recent years. It looks like he may be leaving the club after six years in the summer, however.
    • 26' Another deep cross from the visitors is headed clear, and Luis Garcia's attempt to initiate a counter with a long ball fails as it drifts out for a throw.
    • 24' Bilbao surge forward, take a quick free-kick to continue their momentum after a foul, but Toquero cannot find a team-mate with a low cross inside the hosts' penalty area.
    • 23' Espanyol pressure ends when Luis Garcia upends a Bilbao player to prevent a potential break.
    • 21' Galan slides perfectly with a vital interception to deny Muniain from dashing in on goal after a clever dummy by Toquero.
    • 21' Joaquin Caparros isn't too pleased with his back-line whenever Espanyol have attacked thus far. Looks like he's given instructions to change that.
    • 20' Good floated delivery from Castillo, but it's a little too heavy for Iturraspe.
    • 19' Bilbao have a dangerous free-kick just to the right of the penalty area.
    • 17' Argh, apologies. Technical difficulties (re: disasters) have left a major gap. Back now (I hope) for good.
    • 10' Galan wins Espanyol's first corner after good work by the highly rated Callejon. Marquez fires well off-target from the set piece.
    • 8' The home side finally thread together what could be a good attacking movement, but Ivan is forced to leave the ball as he was in an offside position.
    • 7' On the opposite flank, Bilbao attack again but Torquero's control is poor and it's another goal kick.
    • 6' Muniain slides a ball through to Susaeta, but it's too heavy. Goal kick Espanyol, but it's been a bright start by the visitors.
    • 4' Bilbao win the game's first corner.
    • 3' Iraola tries to slip into the penalty area, but is dispossessed by Verdu.
    • 2' Looks like Llorente isn't fully fit to be benched for this Monday evening fixture - can Espanyol make hay and secure a massive home win?
    • 1' And we're underway!
    • 19:55 TEAMS - Espanyol: Kaméni, Galán, Amat, Rodríguez, Chica, Verdú, Márquez, Garcia, Alonso, Callejón, Osvaldo. Subs: Fonte, Canal, Moldovan, Vasquez, Lopez, Bifouma, Isaias. /// Bilbao: Iraizoz, Iraola, Ekiza, Amorebieta, Xabi Castillo, Gurpegi, Martinez, Susaeta, Iturraspe, Muniain, Toquero. Subs: Orbaiz, Gabilondo, Lopez, Llorente, Fernandez, Ustaritz, De Marcos.
    • 19:50 It's 7th v 8th in the Primera table tonight, and although Espanyol cannot overtake their opponents tonight, a win will keep alive their hopes of a top six finish. Bilbao meanwhile would leap into fifth with an away win.
    • 19:45 Good evening, happy May Day and welcome to our LIVE coverage of the La Liga Monday kick-off between Espanyol and Athletic Bilbao!
  • Summary

    • 82' A good Kameni save forces a corner, the delivery reaches the far post and is headed back across goal but nobody in a green shirt can convert the equaliser!
    • 76' GOAL! ESPANYOL HAVE DONE IT AGAIN! Ivan Alonso from close range!
    • 60' Callejon picks out Amat with a fine ball into the box... he takes a touch but that enables Iraizoz to come out and block the shot. That was a massive chance for the hosts to retake the lead!
    • 45+1' Alonso pounces on a spill by Iraizoz, and is felled by the goalkeeper. Somehow, no penalty is given. One of those scenarios where surely it has to be either a penalty or a yellow for diving, and it looked like there was contact.
    • 43' AND SUSAETA PUTS AWAY THE FREE-KICK!
    • 35' GOAL ESPANYOL! Osvaldo strikes again!
    • 19:55 TEAMS - Espanyol: Kaméni, Galán, Amat, Rodríguez, Chica, Verdú, Márquez, Garcia, Alonso, Callejón, Osvaldo. Subs: Fonte, Canal, Moldovan, Vasquez, Lopez, Bifouma, Isaias. /// Bilbao: Iraizoz, Iraola, Ekiza, Amorebieta, Xabi Castillo, Gurpegi, Martinez, Susaeta, Iturraspe, Muniain, Toquero. Subs: Orbaiz, Gabilondo, Lopez, Llorente, Fernandez, Ustaritz, De Marcos.

Team Line-up & Ratings

  • RCD Espanyol

    Manager: Mauricio Pochettino

  • Athletic Bilbao

    Manager: Joaquín Caparrós

  • Line-up

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    • Player Y! Users Expert My Rating
      Goalkeeper
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      Defenders
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      Midfielders
      Yellow Card Substitution Out90′ - -
      Substitution Out75′ - -
      Substitution Out75′ - -
      Goal - -
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      Strikers
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      Substitution In75′ - -
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      Defenders
      Yellow Card - -
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      Midfielders
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      Yellow Card - -
      Goal - -
      Substitution Out45′ - -
      Substitution Out66′ - -
      Strikers
      Substitution Out59′ - -
      Subs
      Substitution In59′ - -
      Substitution In45′ - -
      Substitution In66′ - -

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