16!! That is the difference between first and third place in the Segunda. A whopper of a gap for Elche at the top who sit at 64 points while third place Alcorcon are at 48. Let’s look at the numbers. This weekend serves as Jornada 29 so there are still 14 weeks left in the season. Or, 42 points if you May. Let’s assume that Elche maintain their high level and pad that lead even more. It’s not outside of the realm of possibilities that the Ilicitanos could be promoted IN APRIL. Just an incredible demonstration of strength. They are back in front of the home fans on Saturday, a place where they haven’t lost all season. This week’s sacrificial lamb is poor Mirandes who could really use the points as they sit two above the drop. Not gonna happen. HOME WIN.
Tough times once again in Santander as Racing parted ways with manager Jose Aurelio Gay. If you ask Gay, he said the players wanted him out. If you ask the players, ‘not so’ is their answer. Alejandro Menendez is the new man at the helm of this shipwreck and his first test is a home date versus Murcia. Don’t look now but Murcia are unbeaten in their last three with two wins. Make it three out of four. AWAY WIN.
Victory in the last second was snatched away from Barcelona B last week out on the islands as Las Palmas found a late equalizer in their 3-3 heartstopper. So now the Baby Blaugrana are back at home to face a wounded Cordoba who who pushed around at home against Villarreal. Victor Valdes epic meltdown in last week’s Clasico has trickled down to the filial club as regular keeper Oier is up with the senior team. 19 year old Banza gets a shot in net. Cordoba have lost two ina row and are winless in four and really need a win badly to get back in the playoff mix. AWAY WIN.
A team that is very good at home, Lugo, faces a team that is pretty poor on the road, Numancia. Lugo are smarting after last week’s Mirandes loss. Easy call here. HOME WIN.
The last two home outings for Almeria have resulted in ‘goleadas’ in their favor with 5-1 and 4-1 wax jobs on Sabadell and Ponferradina. They are back at home this weekend against Las Palmas. Almeria now own a four point cushion over Alcorcon for second. The good news for Pio Pio head coach Sergi Lobera is that Murillo, Thievy and Vitolo are all back. Should be a fun shootout but Almeria takes it. HOME WIN.
All that good cheer that Hercules had at the beginning of 2013 is starting to dissipate. Winless now in their last four including a home loss last week to Almeria, the alicantinos hit the road to play Real Madrid Castilla. The Baby Moudrilenos were thumped last week at Ponferradina which wasn’t that much of a shock. This week will tell us just how serious Hercules still are about wanting to stay up. DRAW.
Probably the two most surprising teams of the seaosn square off in Catalunya on Saturday with Sabadell hosting Ponferradina. Frankly, you just never quite know what you are going to get out of these two. Of late, Sabadell excel at home while Ponfer have struggled away from El Bierzo. I’ll go with that trend. HOME WIN.
If there was any team that could use a solid performance it is Girona. They were embarrassed last week in Gijon, 4-0 at the hands of Sporting. Without question Girona’s worst loss of the season. They host Huesca this weekend and a victory would be a nice way to reaffirm their playoff aspirations. Huesca meanwhile continue to teeter with relegation and safety. This is just the type of game where Huesca raise up and win it when no one thinks they will…. But I just can’t pull that trigger. HOME WIN.
Sandoval magic. No other way to explain it. After defying the odds and going into the Santo Domingo and winning, then thumping Girona last week, Sporting are playing their best futbol of the year. Only thing is that they are playing an incredibly motivated Villarreal side who are fresh off a good away win at Cordoba and will also be celebrating their 90th anniversary. Tough call here but logic says Sporting come back down to earth. HOME WIN.
Alcorcon return to their home grounds hoping to get back into the win column at the Santo Domingo. It was a bizarre two weeks for the Madrid suburbanites who lost at home then won away. Rare, for them. This week they play Recreativo who fought bravely in their defeat versus Elche. Alcorcon gets back to home cooking. HOME WIN.
We end with Xerez-Guadalajara and the situation at Xerez continues to be shaky. The fans say that they want to grab ownership and control of the club, something I would support wholeheartedly. Maybe going down to the Segunda B and cleaning house would be for the best for this club. As for Guadalajara, they still could use some points to distance themselves form the drop, however it was slightly surprising to read this week that there is playoff talk coming out of the manchegos’ camp…. PLAYOFFS!?!? (You Tube Jim Mora – Colts). For now, Xerez gets some dignity with a point at home. DRAW.