ATHLETIC TORRELLANO – 4   CD THADER ROJALES – 0

BY STEVE HIBBERD

What a difference a week makes!  Ok, there are mitigating circumstances surrounding such a poor Thader showing.  Firstly, the opposition are no push overs (joint top), then there’s the loss of a number of key players, added to the mix was an over officious referee.  But in reality, it was too many unforced errors, which ultimately proved Thader’s downfall.

Manager Raul Mora made 4 changes from the previous weeks superb victory over Ilicitana.  Out went injured pair Villa and Javi, suspended captain Lloyd, plus keeper Adrian.  Sergio replaced Adrian in goal, whilst Juan, Alberto & Fran, were the outfield replacements.

Quino was involved in the game’s first incident, when inside the first minute, he was through on goal but adjudged to be offside.  To add insult to injury, Thader’s big striker was later the first of many laughable bookings, for what was pure accidental contact.  Torrellano almost took the lead on 8 mins, following a well delivered cross from the left, but Llames somehow blasted over the bar from close range.

Unfortunately, Thader failed to learn from this let off, for only 2 mins later, Sergio did well to parry a goal bound effort, but Ibra was on hand to slam home the rebound.  Straight from the kick off, Nano put the ball in Torrellano’s net, only for an offside flag to rule out the goal.  Apart from a couple of decent Quino efforts, it seemed only a matter of time before the hosts extended their lead.

When Llames put in a speculative cross on 32 mins, it looked a routine catch for Sergio, but alas, he made a pig’s ear of it, and could only watch in horror as the ball squirmed out of his grasp and into the net.  Worse was to come only 3 mins later, for yet another teasing cross from the left fell nicely for Morales, who with oceans of space had time to poke the ball home from close range.

It could have been 4-0 by half time, had it not been for a vital save by Sergio from the impressive Ibra.

Half time entertainment included watching aircraft about to land at Alicante airport, narrowly avoiding the floodlights, or was it just an optical illusion?  Sergio was once again called into action, when on 52 mins he made light work of saving a firm Llames header from a corner.

There appeared a slight ray of hope for Thader on 62 mins, when following a routine foul, Torrellano’s full back Pablo was given a straight red.  Unfortunately, numerical advantage did little to change the games pattern.   On 75 mins, a cross from the right found sub Morina lurking at the far post, before stabbing it past a helpless Sergio.  Even numerical advantage was soon to disappear, for on 85 mins Abel (playing only the 2nd game for his new club)  was shown a 2nd yellow card, for what can only be described as a travesty of justice.

The poor guy couldn’t believe how a nothing challenge could result in his dismissal.  But it sadly typifies how out of touch some referees are at this level, by failing to understand what are, and are not, cautionable offences.  Sergio made up for his earlier bloomer, when on 87 mins he guessed the right way, brilliantly saving an Ibro penalty, given for a foul by Juan.

Next Sunday 23 May, ko 1130, Thader are back at Moi Gomez stadium.  They will be looking to bounce back to winning ways, also record a double over visiting Murada.

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