Las Palmas vs Zaragoza by Jimeno
Las Palmas suffered 3:1 defeat in the first leg away to Zaragoza and now have a difficult task in order to overcome that situation and still get the ticket for the promotion to Primera. They were twice better that Zaragoza in the regular part of the league, having won with a 5:3 result at home but also 2:0 away from home just few weeks ago, but that didn't help them in the first play-off leg.
Truth to be told, they were actually playing quite well in that game, managing to take the lead via Viera in 19th minute, while the hosts equalized via Rico in 39. Second halftime was also quite open, but only the hosts managed to score, firstly thanks to Pedro in 48th, while the victory was sealed with a goal from Willian in 75th minute. Despite the loss, Las Palmas played an open game and had much more of the ball possession during whole ninety minutes. In the previous round they passed Valladolid only thanks to away goal rule, but has to be said that the team was better during both matches. Same time will play as in previous matches, with the exception that experienced offensive player Valeron might get a chance here from the first minute.
Real Zaragoza, on the other side, started these additional play-off rounds from the sixth position which was the last one getting the play-off ticket, but are now favorites to claim the promotion. All they need is to keep the two goal lead earned from the first leg back at home and the team will again participate in the first level of Spanish football.
They are on a good way to obtain the ticket, despite ending the regular season with seventeen points less than Las Palmas, while the team had twenty one point less than third placed Gijon who was eliminated by them in the play-offs semifinals. They made a miracle to progress over Gijon, as the team suffered heavy 3:0 defeat at home in the first leg, but defeated all the odds in the returning leg and celebrated 4:1 away from home. They showed the winning character once again against Las Palmas, while coach Ranko Popovic didn't change much after that great victory, while right back Fernandez has recovered now in time. Striker Willian Jose will once again lead the team upfront.
Las Palmas now has nothing to lose here and will surely try to attack from the beginning. I cant see anything here but an open game with lot of goals, especially since Zaragoza seems to be deadly in counter attacks led by striker Willian. Over 2.5 goals seems to be very obtainable target here, maybe even after the first sixty minutes or so.