Reds lose to experienced Málaga

Adelaide United were defeated 5-1 by Málaga CF at the Adelaide Oval.

Adelaide United played its much-anticipated clash against La Liga side Málaga CF on Friday night at Adelaide Oval.

Both teams eased into the game with United controlling the pace of the match and enjoying the majority of possession early on.

As a result the match didn’t see its first threatening chance until the 7th minute when an unfortunate touch by Reds’ captain Eugene Galekovic saw the ball fall to Málaga forward Samu Castillejo, however his resulting effort was hit over the bar.

Málaga’s second effort came soon after as Roque Santa Cruz made space and played in Castillejo, but Galekovic was quick to palm the shot clear for a corner.

18 minutes in and United found themselves a goal down after an unfortunate own-goal by defender Osama Malik who, in an attempt to clear a shot on goal, headed the ball past Galekovic.

Adelaide’s best chance of the first half came when the ball dropped for Isaías at the top of the 18-yard-box whose shot found the back of the net, but as Nigel Boogaard was in an offside position and obstructing the view of the Málaga goalkeeper, the goal was unfortunately disallowed.

As half-time drew nearer, United debutant Mark Ochieng was forced into making a goal-saving challenge to clear the ball off the line, as a neat cutback almost found Camacho who looked certain to finish into an open net.

The second half proved to be vastly different to the first, as a very confident Málaga side began to gain the upper hand and scored two goals in three minutes.

A clinical volley from Pablo Perez on the edge of the area in the 49th minute and then an expertly taken freekick by Luis Alberto saw Málaga extend their lead to three goals before the hour.

But the Reds continued to pressure their opponents and their efforts were duly rewarded when Bruce Djite made a surging run through the middle of the park and rifled a low drive off the right-hand post and into the net.

For all of United’s determination and perseverance the evening unluckily ended on a rather sour note, as Málaga was able to score another two goals before the final whistle was blown.

However coach Josep Gombau was full of praise for the numerous young players who played their part in the match and believes the result would have been very different if the Reds had a fully-fit squad.

“We were without four or five first team players tonight. Players like Fabio (Ferreira), Michael (Marrone), Cassio, (Cameron) Watson, and Awer (Mabil).

“If we had these players in the team I think the result would have been very different.

“But I cannot say anything bad about any of the players who played because they all put in their best effort and that’s what I ask of them.”

Gombau was also very grateful to all the supporters who came to support the club on this monumental occasion and hopes the great attendance will continue throughout the upcoming Hyundai A-League season.Match Details

Friday, 24 July 2014
LFP World Challenge
Adelaide United FC 1 (Djite 59’)
Málaga CF 5 (Malik (OG) 18’, Perez 49’, Luis Alberto 52’, Juanmi 63’, Juanmi 86’)
Venue: Adelaide Oval
Crowd: 23,254