The Tercera Division is now in the final stage of its season, with the promotion play-offs underway and here, I go to two matches from the relegation play-off group including my possible game of the season!
⚽️ SAD Villaverde San-Andrés 0-1 DAV Santa Ana
🏟 Estadio Boetticher, Madrid
🏆 Tercera Division Group 7
It’s hard to believe that my previous visit to Botti almost two months ago was actually their last home game too.
Alas, this was not one for the highlight reel.
Their start to the relegation play-off group has been dogged by constant postponements, mostly due to Covid-19 cases in their squad or those of their opponents and despite having lots of games in hand, their chances of being one of the top four teams in the group, who will earn another season in the Tercera, are almost non-existent.
Still, it could always be worse. Santa Ana have endured a hellish season and spent the entire first part of the season rooted to the bottom of the northern section of Group 7.
Despite a good start from Villaverde, Santa Ana scored the only goal of the game on 27 minutes. The game was largely uneventful, the host had more than a few half-chances in the second half but the equaliser never arrived.
Bar Watch: The kiosk was open as usual for a pre-game coffee and as it was warm, mid-game refreshment. The staff even gave us a free bocata cut into slices to share!
Shop Watch: The usual scarves were on sale. Still not sure if the home shirt is available to buy or not at the ground.
Match Rating: 6/10 – A pleasant morning out rather than an entertaining football match. Santa Ana deserved something to cheer about after the season they’ve had. Looking forward to the rematch at the Polideportivo Martín Temiño in June!
⚽️ Real Aranjuez 2-3 CD Paracuellos Antamira
🏟 Estadio Municipal El Deleite, Aranjuez
🏆 Tercera Division Group 7
At long last, I headed south, about as far south as you can go in the Communidad de Madrid, to see Real Aranjuez at their home ground, the Estadio Municipal El Deleite, having seen them in a couple of other venues around Madrid already this season.
After a very pleasant hour on the train and a walk through the historic centre of Aranjuez, I arrived at the ground in time for kick off and paid €12 for my ticket – slightly above average for the Tercera – but fortunately the game would be worth every cent.
It wasn’t immediately obvious from the first half which saw visitors Paracuellos Antamira dominate after taking the lead after ten minutes through Dani Pascual although Aranjuez’s goalkeeper probably should have done better.
Things really came alive after the break, when two goals from Aranjuez forward Aitor Lora, the second a brilliant individual effort, turned the game on its head.
But their lead didn’t last for very long. Paracuellos immediately put them under pressure and Aranjuez were soon reduced to ten men as Miguel Ángel received two yellow cards inside four minutes, the second for a deliberate handball. Paracuellos hit the free kick straight into the wall, but it rebounded to Mayorga, who volleyed home a superb equaliser.
Within a couple of minutes Aranjuez were reduced to nine men when Tembleque was given a straight red card for a dangerous challenge. The referee was already a candidate for the least popular man in Aranjuez and surely earned this title for himself when he awarded Paracuellos a penalty deep into stoppage time, which Acho duly converted to seal the win.
Bar Watch: Nothing! Obviously the locals were all well aware of the lack of any food or drink on site, judging by the numbers who arrived with picnic baskets and coolers stocked with tortilla, meat, sandwiches beer and soft drinks.
I had to settle for a post-match Coke and tapa at nearby bar Pikoteo.
Shop Watch: No sign of any merchandise on sale and actually very little sign of it among the supporters beyond the obligatory face masks. I suppose it was a bit warm for scarves…
Match Rating: 9/10 – A low-key contender for game of the season here! Great end of season fun.