Alaves 1-0 Deportivo: Munir magic wins it for Basque sideFebruary 18, 2018
Munir El Haddadi scored a superb long-range goal to give Alavés a narrow victory over Deportivo, and condemn the Galicians to two consecutive 1-0 defeats under recently appointed boss Clarence Seedorf.
The visitors produced an improved attacking performance, but it was not enough to stem their poor run of results against an Alavés side who are now unbeaten in their last nine home matches.
Deportivo came fractionally close to scoring an opening goal, but Zakaria Bakkali’s curled effort struck the post after Adrián López had sprinted clear on the counter-attack.
Bakkali had another opportunity to put the relegation strugglers ahead, but the Belgian’s shot was wild and missed the target.
Alavés could have taken the lead shortly after half-time, but Manu García’s header was too weak to trouble goalkeeper Rubén Martínez, following an Ibai Gómez corner.
The moment of inspiration arrived when Munir collected a pass from Alfonso Pedraza – after the midfielder had waltzed in from the left-hand side – and worked himself sufficient space before crashing home a speculative effort which soared into the top corner.
Alavés could have extended their advantage with just over ten minutes remaining, but Gómez’s shot hit the post.
Victory for Alavés puts more distance between themselves and the relegation zone, as they continue to show encouraging development under manager Abelardo Fernández.
Another loss for Deportivo means they remain in penultimate position, and are at risk of falling further away from safety if Levante earn a positive result away to Real Sociedad on Sunday.
Alavés face a stern test away to Real Madrid in their next La Liga fixture. For Deportivo, they host Espanyol at the Estadio Riazor.