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Real Betis 1-1 Eibar: Betis held at home by Eibar in their last home game of 2018

Real Betis 1-1 Eibar: Betis held at home by Eibar in their last home game of 2018

Los Verdiblancos have failed to claim a fourth consecutive win in La Liga after they were held at home by a resilient Eibar.

Despite the draw, Betis enter Christmas in the European places. They were hoping to catch Alaves and enter fifth but instead remain in seventh.

Eibar came into this one in 13th place, failing to win since their shock victory over Real Madrid.

The home side were dealt a blow early on when Sidnei had to be replaced by Zouhair Feddal just after the opening 15 minutes after falling heavily on his shoulder.

The injury blow was quickly forgotten however, when Cristian Tello set up Antonio Sanabria just after the 20-minute mark to score his first La Liga goal of the season.

A mixed first half ended with Betis in control before the game spring into life in what was a fast paced and entertaining second half.

Sanabria should’ve got his second early in the second period, when Sergio Canales’ perfectly weighted cross went skimming across the box.

It looked a certain goal but a last-ditch interception from Anaitz Arbilla denied the 22-year-old.

One of Eibar’s best attacking transitions came when a rapid counter attack caught Betis short at the back before Giovani Lo Celso brought down Marc Cucurella on the edge of the box.

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The Argentine was shown a yellow card.

José Luis Mendilibar was then sent to the stands after Eibar’s head coach waved his hand to simulate a red card being shown before making his way down the touchline protesting to the linesman.

With 25 minutes remaining Kike’s cutback found Sergi Enrich free in the box, before striking the ball wide. A chance that looked easier to score, was wasted.

Eibar were far from out of the game, constantly applying pressure and creating goal scoring opportunities and their persistence paid off when Feddal gave the away side a penalty for a pull on Iván Ramis’ shirt.

Azulgranas have now scored five penalties this season and in Charles’ absence, Fabián Orellana took centre stage and squeezed his penalty under Pau Lopez.

The equaliser ended Betis’ run of over four hours without conceding a goal in La Liga.

A game which found both Lopez and Riesgo in fine form, but also packed with rashness in front of goal.

Real Betis have gained a reputation for scoring late goals, with 42% coming after the 75th minute. Eight of their nineteen, but couldn’t continue that trend today.

As that was the last matchday of 2018, Los Verdiblancos won’t play again until they travel to Estadio El Alcoraz to face Huesca on January 5th.

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Real Betis: (3-4-2-1) Lopez; Mandi, Bartra, Sidnei (Feddal, 17); Francis (Barragán, 87), Carvalho, Lo Celso, Tello; Canales, Joaquín (Loren 83); Sanabria. Unused subs: Kaptoum, Inui, García, Robles.

Eibar: (4-4-2) Riesgo; Peña, Ramis (Oliveira 72), Arbilla, Cote; Orellana (Blasis, 89), Escalante (Diop, 49) Jordán, Cucurella; Kike, Enrich. Unused subs:  Álvarez, Bigas, Areitio, Cardona.

Goals: Sanabria (21’) Fabián Orellana (72)

Cards: (Yellows:) Escalante, Ramis, Oliveira, Jordán, Lo Celso, Feddal

Stadium: Estadio Benito Villamarin (49,426 attendance).