Malaga’s relegation to Segunda was confirmed on Thursday night with a 1-0 defeat away to Levante.
Any vague hope of survival was eliminated by a 93rd-minute winner from Ghanaian forward Emmanuel Boateng which leaves the Costa del Sol side 17 points from safety with just 15 points left to play for.
The end of the club’s ten-year spell in the top flight came in cruel fashion after a game in which the Blue and Whites looked most likely to win.
Striker Brown Ideye had two good chances in the first half during a period of good pressure from the visitors. His first was a header from a cross that was easily saved by Oier; his second an effort at the near post blocked out for a corner.
In the 28th minute Chory Castro stung the palms of the keeper with a half volley from just outside the area to the left but Malaga were unable to capitalise on their dominance.
In the second 45, Levante got a foothold in the game and they could have taken the lead when Coke headed José Campaña’s freekick inches wide of the left post.
However, the knockout blow came late on, as has often been the case for Malaga this season, when Saša Lukić squeezed the ball across the face of goal from the byline for Emmanuel Boateng to score the winner deep in stoppage time.
Despite leaving the press waiting for his comments following the game, Malaga head coach José González was humble: “I ask the fans for forgiveness.”
“We’ve not produced what was expected of us, but we gave all that we had.”
“The boys are devastated but this will only make them stronger.”
Las Palmas are likely to join the Blue and Whites in Segunda next year with Deportivo and Levante fighting it out for the final spot.
Victory for Levante, however, has boosted their chances of survival, increasing the gap on Clarence Seedorf’s side to seven points with five games to go.