Real Mallorca need to get back to winning ways soon or risk losing their automatic promotion place. I think we all knew a “sticky patch” would come sometime and it has right now. Since the 2-3 home defeat to Fuenlabrada they’ve now drawn away in Oviedo, after being 2-0 up and lost at home last weekend to Las Palmas 0-1. There was also a Copa Del Rey defeat to Fuenlabrada sandwiched in between. If you had of said Mallorca will be in second place at the end of the first round of matches, most people would have taken it. The problem is this lack of form has come at the wrong time. The next few games sees them playing all their promotion rivals. There are no games this weekend due to the Copa del Rey but next week there’s a tricky away game at fifth placed Rayo Vallecano. The team they lost 0-1 to at home in the first game of the season. That’s followed by eighth placed Girona and bottom of the table Albacete. Then it’s two consecutive home games against first placed Espanyol and third placed Almeria. Those two games will have a huge bearing on those two automatic promotion places.
The coach Luis Garcia Plaza said this week, “We’ve gone 18 games without losing and now we’ve gone three without winning. If the losses had been interspersed, nothing would have happened. These two weeks of training are going to be very good for us. Marc(Cardona) and Jordi(Mboula) are coming back and we will see if we can strengthen any other positions. We have a long way to go still. The demand is very great to be among the best.”
The break this weekend may well work for them to get back to what they were doing before. La Liga Smartbank is a difficult league to get out of and there are no dominant teams. If Mallorca can go on another run like before that will secure promotion.
Atlético Baleares have had no game since their pre-Christmas 2-3 home loss to UD Poblense. Both last weeks and this weeks games were called off due to the bad snow in Madrid. But that means they may well have a fixture pile up. The coach Jordi Roger said this week he hopes they don’t have to play six games in two weeks. They have already missed a couple of games because of a Covid outbreak and the league has to finish the first half by mid March. Central midfielder Miguel Ángel Cordero has joined in the January transfer window. He has joined them from La Liga 2 side Cartagena and he has plenty of experience in that league and Segunda B too.
Ud Poblense were also snowed off last week as their opponents Dux Internacional couldn’t get out of Madrid. They have just signed 20 year old forward Carlos Javier Polo Jiménez or “Peke” as he is known. He comes from Barcelona B so must have a good pedigree and hopefully he can fire them up the table.
UD Ibiza continued their unbeaten run in the league last week with a 2-0 win over Villareal B. They’re five points clear at the top and have only conceded one goal in their nine games. They’re nailed on to go on to the second half of the season and hopefully promotion. They’re at home to Levante B today and then It’s Copa del Rey next Thursday. After their amazing 5-2 over Celta last time out, they are up up against the Basque side Athletic Bilbao. Currently twelfth in La Liga, they’re having a mixed season and I wouldn’t rule out UD beating them. They’ve also just signed 20yr old left back Javi Vazquez from Sevilla B.
Peña Deportiva disappointingly drew last time out against the bottom side Atzeneta 1-1. Although they’ll be glad of an 83rd minute equaliser, which was only their second goal of the season! Last night they unfortunately lost to La Liga side Valladolid 1-4 in the Copa del Rey last 32. But only after extra-time and after having one player sent-off. This weekend they are away at Villareal B.
In Tercera Group A, Andratx lead the way by six points from Manacor. CD Ibiza Pitiusas are in third five points behind Manacor with two games in hand.
In Tercera Group B. Platges de Calvia lead Real Mallorca B by six points. Mallorca had the chance to close that gap yesterday to their rivals but the top two fought out a 0-0 draw.
In Division Honor, CD San Francisco have found a bit of form. Last week they won away on a snowy Club Esportiu Europa Pitch with an 89th minute winner. Yesterday they beat third placed FC Girona 2-0 to go to fifth in the table. Espanyol still lead the rest by twelve points having won 10 of their 11 games.
Take care everyone.
Richie presents the Radio One Mallorca Breakfast show Monday to Friday 07.30-11.00am on 93.8fm in Mallorca and 102fm in Calvià, online at www.radioonemallorca.com on mobile through their free App for IPhone & Android, The Tunein Radio App, iTunes, the Spanish TDT TV service and all smart speakers. If you can’t hear him on the radio then you’ll find him working at Pirates Adventure the islands number one night out and every now and again he may make an understudy appearance!
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