What a great day yesterday was. Barbeque, friends, few beers, many laughs....then off to the New Condomina for the most important game of the season. Hundreds of fans had gone early to welcome the team coach as it arrived at the stadium.....the supporters club had organized some firecrackers, some smoke, the atmosphere was great when the coach arrived there was no trouble at all, far from it....that is until the police thugs decided to start throwing their truncheons around, smashing innocent bystanders and even women. It is the worst abuse of power I have ever seen - and excessive use of force, and for moments I forgot I was in a european, democratic country, and imagined myself in Syria or some other violent dictatorship. The Police attitude and action was totally uncalled for and out of all proportion. However, I am sorry to say that this isn't uncommon from the "antidisturbios" Police. In my experience in Spanish football it is usually them that cause trouble - you only have to look at them....all pumped from the gymnasium, just looking for any excuse to beat up or abuse anyone unfortunate enough to be in their way. Maybe it will take the death of an innocent person (as happened recently in London) for these brutal louts to be called to account....and that is extremely sad. As a taxpayer I am seething.....and demand more respect from these "public servants".
The atmosphere in the ground was electric. It seemed even the most critical and rancid fans were well aware of what was at stake. It's just a shame that only 16,050 turned up....the sad fact is that it's almost impossible to fill a stadium if either Madrid or Barcelona aren't involved (see posts ad nauseam).
Real Murcia started the game very nervously. Lugo looked a good side and knocked the ball around well, without really creating anything clear cut. For half an hour they dominated...until an injury to Albiol meant that Isaac came on....and his pace changed the game. The last 15 odd minutes we started to dominate....Kike dithered when clean through on goal (although his overall performace was brilliant), and half time came too soon.....in another 5 minutes we would surely have gone ahead.
The second half was a different story....we dominated from start to finish, scored 2 great goals (Chando and Isaac), and made Lugo look ineffective.....and from the 60th minute they looked beaten, drained and demoralised. They gave it their best in the first 20 minutes of the match....flattered to deceive, made some pretty passing, but lacked punch. It was just like watching Arsenal.
Ander Gago - Luciano - Iván Amaya - Óscar Sánchez
Albiol (Isaac, 39) - Aguilera (Cámara, 83) - Richi - Pedro
Kike (Aquino, 76) - Chando
Cristóbal - Manu - Belfortti - Víctor Marco
Marcos - Iván (Tornero, 65) - Claudio Monti (Yago, 78) - Azkorra
Carlos Pita - Arroyo
1-0 Chando (48)
2-0 Isaac (64)
Referee: Mr. Villena Contreras. Generally good but didn't interpret well when he could have given advantage on a couple of occasions.
Attendance : 16,050.
Now comes the toughest part.....the away leg in Lugo next Sunday. We simple can't take our foot off the gas.....there cannot be any complacency. But I am sure Iñaki Alonso will not let the players loose focus. Today I am hoarse and tired. yesterday's game aged me about 10 years. But this time next week, we could be back where we belong, and it'll all have been worth it..