Torry went into this last home match of 2016 safe in the knowledge that the much published 3 points they were deducted following the Almoradi match, have now been officially returned. But, having had one early xmas present already, they desperately now need some more, in the form of division 3 victories!
Although the midweek defeat at Crevillente failed to achieve that, goals by Calzado and Lewis gave the travelling fans something to cheer about in this local derby.
Nevertheless, following the return of the deducted points, before start of play on Sunday, Pedreño’s men sat just outside the relegation zone in 17th place on 16 points, whilst opponents Paterna featured just 2 places and 4 points ahead of them.
But the reality of the situation was that we were watching two poor sides albeit that the visitors sat slightly higher in the table than their hosts. The fact was clearly demonstrated in the opening twenty minutes with neither outfit showing any real flare as a stalemate in midfield cancelled out hopes of any excitement.
There was a near miss for the Salinero’s when Robles and Buza went sliding in to a goalmouth cross followed by a spectacular overhead kick from Lewis, which sailed narrowly over the bar, but it was fully 28 minutes before we saw the first real effort on goal.
Unfortunately it came from the head of Paterna’s Duco who found himself completely unmarked at a corner. Buba had no chance in the Torry goal.
Moments the keeper’s woes got decidedly worse when he collided into Torry’s new Slovakian defender Pecha. Things didn’t look good for Buba as he crashed to the ground but after treatment, although still appearing slightly dazed, the Equatoguinean, convinced the manager that he was fit to carry on.
As the half drifted into it’s closing stages, Calzado almost pulled the goal back just prior to the interval, but a superb fingertip save from Xenxo denied the defender his first Torry goal.
The second period brought a much better display from the home side as they went in search of goals, but despite creating a number of first class opportunities ‘the force’ was simply not with them
Man of the match Lewis ran his heart out as brought off a number of good saves by Xenxo, including another spectacular overhead kick early on followed by a sizzling 30 yard drive toward the end.
There were chances also for Buza who had an effort deflected wide before seeing another point blank save turned onto the post by the Paterna keeper, which he just managed to get his fingertips to.
Matheus shot into the side netting late on before a drive from just inside the box by substitute David Soto was millimetres wide.
But this really was heartwarming stuff from the Salinero’s and they will feel gutted that they got nothing from the game, now realising just 2 points from the last 18, a return that has them staring relegation in the mouth.
But manager Pedreno is a man who has been in this position before. He is a wily old campaigner who knows the Valencian Leagues inside out.
Almost 20 years as the manager of Horadada saw himself extract his team from similar positions on many previous occasions and I have no doubt that he will most certainly do it once again.
Next weekend another long trip to Castellon where Torry meet CF Borriol in the final game of the first half of the season, a half they will be hoping they can finish with a win against a team that currently sit just one place above them.