December 21, 2012
Valencia 4-2 Getafe
Ernesto Valverde got his first home win since taking charge of Valencia as Los Che saw off Getafe in a hugely-entertaining encounter at the Mestalla.
The hosts got off to the perfect start and were 2-0 up inside seven minutes as Roberto Soldado headed in from Sofiane Feghouli's cross before the Valencia captain turned provider to set up Jonas to curl past Miguel Angel Moya.
Getafe soon had a foothold in the game, though, as Alvaro Vasquez turned in Xavi Torres' pass from a narrow angle, but Valencia restored their two-goal advantage on the half hour as Ricardo Costa powered home a header from Tino Costa's corner.
Alexis reduced the deficit once more on the hour mark with another fine header, this time from Abdelaziz Barrada's corner, but as Getafe pushed for an equaliser they only succeeded in leaving space at the back and Valencia finally sealed the three points when Nelson Valdez swept home Jonathan Viera's cutback in stoppage time.
Consecutive home defeats had seen Valencia fall seven points off the pace in the race for the final Champions League place, but they ensured a perfect end to an up-and-down 2012 with a blistering start.
Soldado took his tally for the season to 13 with a neat finish in the first minute after Feghouli broke free down the right and dinked a cross into the heart of the area.
The Spain international then showed signs his partnership with Jonas could be returning to the heights it hit last season as they exchanged passes on the edge of the area before the Brazilian slotted the ball into the top corner.
Six minutes later Getafe had one back as Torres broke through a couple of challenges in midfield and fed Vasquez, who finished expertly to register only his second goal since joining from Espanyol in the summer.
Diego Castro then wasted a great chance to bring the visitors level as he blazed over from close range after 24 minutes, and they were punished almost instantly as Ricardo Costa took advantage of very slack marking to head home from an inswinging corner.
Jonas and Feghouli then got in each other's way as they spurned a great chance to make it four.
Both sides spurned great chances just after the break as Alvaro was denied by Diego Alves before Jonas was denied by a post after being played through again by Soldado.
Valverde's men were then guilty of poor defending from a corner as Alexis scored against his former club, but they continued to threaten a fourth goal and, after Pablo Piatti and Costa went close, they finally made the game safe when Valdez stroked into an empty net from Viera's unselfish cross.
|1 Diego Alves||1 Miguel Moya|
|24 Tino Costa||21 Michel|
|17 Andrés Guardado||3 Mané|
|4 Adil Rami||6 Alberto Lopo|
|12 Joao Pereira||4 Miguel Torres Gómez|
|8 Sofiane Feghouli||18 Lafita|
|20 Ricardo Costa||2 Alexis|
|11 Pablo Piatti||17 Diego Castro Gimenez|
|9 Roberto Soldado||7 Álvaro Vásquez|
|7 Jonas||19 Abdelaziz Barrada|
|6 David Albelda||25 Xavi Torres|
|16 Nelson Haedo Valdez||Jordi Codina 13|
|14 Antonio Barragan||David Angel Abraham 16|
|13 Vicente Guaita||Medhi Lacen 5|
|10 Ever Banega||Jaime Gavilán Martínez 10|
|21 Daniel Parejo||Rafa Lopez 15|
|18 Victor Ruiz||Hugo Fraile 24|
|15 Jonathan Viera||Sarabia 8|
|Ever Banega for Sofiane Feghouli (65)||Rafa Lopez for Mané (5)|
|Jonathan Viera for Jonas (76)||Jaime Gavilán Martínez for Michel (73)|
|Nelson Haedo Valdez for Pablo Piatti (90)||Sarabia for Abdelaziz Barrada (77)|
|Adil Rami (40)||Rafa Lopez (43)|
|Roberto Soldado (87)||Miguel Torres Gómez (85)|
|David Albelda (90)||Álvaro Vásquez (87)|
|Xavi Torres (82)|
|· Squads: Valencia | Getafe|