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Valencia downs Recreativo 2-0 in Spanish league

Valencia downs Recreativo 2-0 in Spanish league

Joaquin Sanchez's two second-half goals helped Valencia beat Recreativo Huelva 2-0 on Saturday and maintain its hopes of a third Spanish league title in six years.
Joaquin struck on the hour when he sidefooted an angled shot home after the ball was played into his path by striker David Villa.
The right winger doubled his tally three minutes later after meeting a floated cross by midfielder David Silva with a volley at the far post.
Joaquin's goals were his first in the league at Valencia's Mestalla stadium since he joined the club for euro25 million (US$34 million) from Real Betis last August.
Valencia's victory, only its third in the past six games, lifted it into fourth place with 56 points from 32 games. Recreativo, which suffered its first defeat in five games, remained seventh with 49.
Defending champion FC Barcelona leads the league with 59. Sevilla has 58, and Real Madrid 57.
On Sunday, Barcelona hosts Levante, Sevilla welcomes Espanyol, and Madrid visits Athletic Bilbao.
Valencia's Jaime Gavilan made his first appearance since Oct. 28 when he came on as an 80th-minute substitute. The midfielder had been sidelined with a torn cruciate ligament in his right knee.
Also, sixth-place Atletico Madrid drew 0-0 with struggling Betis to affect its chances of securing a place in next season's Champions League.
Neither Atletico nor Betis created a clear scoring opportunity in the first half at Vicente Calderon Stadium. Betis midfielder Marcos Assuncao came closest in the 37th minute with a long-range free kick which flew narrowly wide.
Atletico's Bulgaria midfielder, Martin Petrov, entered as a 56th-minute substitute for his first game since Oct. 14 when he tore a cruciate ligament in his left knee.
He was unable to score with a free header in the 68th, and shot over from a good position in the 87th.
Betis' David Odonkor returned in the 80th minute following a long injury absence. The Germany midfielder has been out of action for five months after undergoing surgery on his right knee.
Odonkor wasted a good chance when he shot wide five minutes later.
Atletico, which has six games remaining, has 51 points. Betis, which is winless in seven matches, stayed 15th with 35 points.
Sunday's other 32nd-round games are: Getafe vs. Real Sociedad; Gimnastic Tarragona vs. Villarreal; Celta Vigo vs. Mallorca; Osasuna vs. Zaragoza; and Racing Santander vs. Deportivo La Coruna.


Updated : 2021-04-13 04:23 GMT+08:00