A Season in Pictures – Games 13, 14 and 15

This update of my season in pictures log is very Recre-centric, taking in three matches in the latter part of September and October as El Decano’s fortunes continue to fluctuate.

Game 13: Recreativo 1-1 RB Linense (Estadio Nuevo Colombino, 24.9.2017)

So Recreativo actually played quite well, but still ended up feeling frustrated. Dominating possession, but not overly troubling the RB (Real Balompédica, not Red Bull) Linense goalkeeper, it was going to require something special to make the breakthrough. And something special it was, as a long-range shot from Rafa de Vicente fizzed into the net, it looked like Recre were on their way to a second successive home win, even more so after the visitors were reduced to ten men on 83 minutes.

However, they eventually managed to find a way to shoot themselves in the foot. Conceding a late corner, some static defending and voilà! Linense had an equaliser.

Game 14: Recreativo 2-1 UD Extremadura (Estadio Nuevo Colombino, 8.10.2017)

“REY DEL EMPATE” proclaimed the front cover of Recremanía, the free programme given out at every home game at the Colombino. After losing 3-2 against Cartagena on the opening day, Recre had returned to classic binary results (1-1, 1-1, 1-0, 1-1, 1-1, 0-0) and were in dire need of a win to kick-start their season.

Things got off to a promising start with Boris converting a penalty after Carlos Lazo had been brought down by the Extremadura goalkeeper. Unfortunately, the lead didn’t last long as the visitors were level after 34 minutes. Based on previous form, you’d have been forgiven for thinking that was that as far as the scoring went, but on the hour Recre went back in front. There was definitely an elelemnt of good fortune about the goal as Carlos Calvo’s looped the ball into the box and it bounced in front of the ‘keeper, which was enough to catch him out and see the ball nestle in the back of the net. It was probably meant to be a cross, but since it gave the ‘King of the Draw’ a rare win, no one really cared!

A small digression from the usual pattern of these updates, but I’d really hoped Game 15 would come, not only in a different country, but a different continent. I’d booked a trip to Tangier in Morocco for the Día de Hispanidad puente in mid-October and to my delight, the local side were scheduled to be at home that weekend. The only problem was that there was no kick off time listed for the game. Only as I travelled on Thursday 12th did I discover that the game was scheduled for Friday lunchtime. I thought this was odd, but was willing to go, until I realised that the stadium, being four miles outside the central area I was staying in, was only really reachable by taxi. Public transport in Morocco is not quite as efficient as in Spain.

So I decided to give it a miss. But on Friday afternoon I checked a few websites for the result and now discovered them listing the game as a Saturday afternoon kick off. Odd, but not as odd as what I found when I went to check the scores the following day, at which point I discovered that the entire Moroccan League programme for the weekend was listed as postponed. Guess I’ll have to wait for my first African match.

Confusion reigns in Morocco’s Botola Pro League.

Game 15: Recreativo 0-1 UCAM Murcia (Estadio Nuevo Colombino, 28.10.2017)

Urgh, this is a tough one to write about. Recre really didn’t deserve to lose this, nor did they really deserve to win, but it’s just the manner that the game slipped away that hurts more than anything. Dallying on the ball in an inoccuous-looking situation on the halfway line in the dying minutes turned into disaster as possession was conceded and UCAM, who had previously barely managed a shot worthy of the name, found themselves with runners piling forward and punished the mistake with a goal. Their celebrations at full time showed they knew they’d just got away with that one.

As for Recre, a first home defeat of the season, but a second reverse in succession after an unbeaten run of eight games, revealed some tensions. A number of fans vocally called for the departure of manager Javier Casquero during the game, and  there were more adding their voices as the players trudged off the pitch at the end. Difficult days.

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