Liga - Sevilla shock Valencia

Sun, 26 Feb 19:12:00 2012

Sevilla recorded their first away win in La Liga since November with a 2-1 victory over Valencia at the Mestalla.

Valencia-Sevilla.EFE - 0

The home side took the lead in 25th minute through Tino Costa after a stunning build up. Bruno, Sofiane Feghouli and Jonas combined with first touch passing inside the Sevilla box to lay the ball off to Tino Costa to smash the ball low into the bottom right corner.

Valencia's confidence looked to grow after that goal, until Sevilla hit back against the run of play.

Jesus Navas burst down the right wing to deliver a cross that eluded the Valencia defence, with Gary Medel stooping low to head in the equaliser.

Both sides failed to create any clear opportunities in the second half, until a lethal counter attack from Sevilla gave the visitors the lead.

Ivan Rakitic's pinpoint through ball released Frederic Kanoute, and with Valencia goalkeeper Vicente Guaita charging out of his goal, the Malian poked the ball on to Jesus Navas to slot the ball home into the empty net.

It proved to be the winner, securing Sevilla's second successive La Liga victory. Valencia remain third, but are now only five points ahead of fourth placed Levante.

The hosts were looking to bounce back from a 5-1 trouncing at the hands of Barcelona last weekend, and had the better of the early stages.

Roberto Soldado, playing his first match after a first call up to the Spain squad since 2007, looked bright up front for Valencia.

Most of Los Che's attacking threat came down the right wing, where Bruno and Feghouli regularly combined but failed to produce any killer crosses into Sevilla's box.

That was until the 21st minute, when Soldado sprinted across Julien Escude, only for the Frenchman to quickly get in front of the forward to clear away.

The momentum was with Valencia, but it took a moment of magic to unlock the Sevilla defence.

A flowing move of one touch passes finally found Tino Costa on the edge of the box, who rifled in a curling low shot past Andres Palop.

Most chances for the home side were coming through the Argentinean, and he continually linked play effectively.

But, in the 36th minute, and against the run of play, Sevilla hit back. Navas attacked down the right side and burst into the box to deliver a chipped cross, which was met by the diving head of Gary Medel.

The visitors dominated the rest of the half, and just before the break, Navarro played the ball over the top of the Valencia defence which was met by Negredo. The Spain striker crossed the ball to Kanoute , who had his shot cleared off the line.

Valencia were the better side early in the second half, but once again failed to take advantage of their possession.

Sevilla had the first chance of the second period, when Jose Antonio Reyes raced into the penalty area and fired a shot across goal, which was well saved by Guaita.

Substitutions from both sides broke up the game, and in the 70th minute, the visitors got what turned out to be the winner.

Rakitic started a counter attack from his own half and the Croatian played a through ball to Kanoute  who poked the ball to Navas to slot into an empty net.

Valencia tried in vain to get the equaliser, but were running out of ideas. Long balls and crosses into the box were regularly dealt with by the Sevilla defence.

Los Che have now lost their last two La Liga matches, but will hope to get back on track at Granada next weekend.

Richard Newman / Eurosport

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