Espanyol vs Levante

After a quite turbulent start of the season when Espanyol earned just one point from the first three rounds of the Spanish La Liga, Quique Sanchez Flores’ team has been building up the form recently, grabbing seven points out of the previous four games, with the form of LWDW. They won both games at home (against Deportivo La Coruna, 4:1, and Celta Vigo, 2:1), taking a point from Villarreal at Estadio de la Ceramica, and losing a battle against Real Madrid at Santiago Bernabeu, 2:0, in the seventh round of the Spanish La Liga. The clash against the defending champion was a difficult task, as Real Madrid has already lost too many points in front of the home fans. Espanyol had to defend from the start of the game, and in the first minute, the goalkeeper Pau Lopez saved his team with a magnificent reaction after Isco was all alone in front of him. Just three minutes.

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later Espanyol’s keeper stopped another Isco’s shot. These two players had a great battle for 90 minutes, and in the end, it was Isco who won it, with two goals in Pau Lopez’s net. Espanyol had two great scoring opportunities to level the game before Isco’s second goal in the 71st minute. Just before the halftime, Gerard Moreno’s left foot strike hit the post, after Aaron Caricol’s beautiful cross. Keylor Navas was beaten, but Los Blancos were pretty lucky. In the 50th minute, Espanyol had another chance, when Darder has founded Marc Navarro in the box. This time Kaylor Navas was brilliant, stopping Navarro to get his first goal of the season. The manager Quique Sanchez Flores can be satisfied with his team’s overall display against Real Madrid, but he should be concerned with players’ finishing, especially against strong teams in the Spanish La Liga.

The Frogs had a great start of the season with nine points out of the first five games (two wins and three draws), but they’ve lost previous two matches against Betis at Estadio Benito Villamarin, 4:0, and Alaves at home, 2:0. They failed to score, and what is also important, they couldn’t create enough scoring chances, while the defensive job was ridiculous. After the first seven rounds of the Spanish La Liga, The Frogs are sitting at the 10th spot with nine points and an 8:10 goal difference. Against Alaves in the previous round, Levante has struggled offensively, creating just five scoring chances, while five times they tried with long-distance shots. If you cannot hit the target, you cannot get a goal, and it was a case when they’ve welcomed Alaves. All their 13 shots were blocked or off target. On the other side, they allowed Alaves to create seven goal-scoring chances.

After just 25 minutes it was obvious Levante’s defending is quite confusing, as visitors had two huge opportunities to get a goal. In the 33rd minute they permit Alfonso to easily cuts inside the box, and after his cross, Munir El Haddadi made it 1:0. Alaves successfully defended the lead just because The Frogs couldn’t find the flow, looking like a bunch of amateurs on the field. In the 81st minute, Alvaro Medran made it 2:0 with a beautiful header, after Levante’s defenders left him all alone in the box. The Frogs’ manager Juan Ramon Lopez Muniz now has a difficult job to recover his players after two consecutive defeats. He needs to shake things a little bit if he wants his team to play more aggressively. Against Betis Levante created 4 scoring chances, also failing to find the net, while they conceded all four goals in the second half. It could be another nightmare on Friday evening if they don’t change something in their play. Another loss can surely make them get cold feet.