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LANZAROTE 2 UD LAS PALMAS C 1, 24th March 2019,
After a long hard grind manager Maxi Barrera´s men are in the playoff positions and have jumped two places up to third spot with eight matches remaining.
The previous day third placed side UD Villa Santa Brígida lost at home to second from bottom UD Las Zocas 1-2 and fourth placed side CD Santa Úrsula could only draw at home to lowly Atlético Guímar 1-1.
The Rojillos took full advantage of this by deservedly beating seventh placed UD Las Palmas C on a hot Sunday afternoon and leapfrogging both sides to move into third.
Prior to the match Rojillo fan Elaine Armstead was given a little surprise as her partner Bill had arranged for her favourite player and many other ladies favourite player the Lanzarote Captain Rosmen to present her with a bouquet of flowers to celebrate her birthday.
The opening stages of the match didn’t offer too much in the way of excitement but in three consecutive minutes starting from the 12th min the Rojillos had three good opportunities to take the lead.
Firstly Alex Yunes would have felt he could have done better from a header from six yards with the keeper committed then Brad had a half chance from the edge of the box but saw his shot deflected for a corner and finally what I thought was a certain goal is when centre back Luciano found himself with a free header from a corner but from eight yards his header powered a foot over the crossbar.
The Rojillos only had to wait another three minutes to open the scoring. Midfielder Enrique Castaño did brilliantly stealing the ball in midfield then rode a foul which the Ref did well to play the advantage, Enrique then sent a delightful through ball to Alex Yunes on the left, the striker skillfully cut inside the defender and volleyed a powerful strike from 20 yards into the right hand corner to send his side 1-0 up.
In the 22nd minute it looked as though the Gran Canarian side had levelled when a cross from the left was headed text book style low and hard into the corner but the Rojillos keeper Agoney produced an astonishing one handed save low at his right hand post to deny striker Adib.
In the 39th minute Miguel Gómez turned his defender on the edge of the area and when this guy lines up a strike it is more often than not powerful and accurate. His effort went like a bullet but the Las Palmas keeper made an outstanding save palming the ball away for a corner.
From the resulting corner the ball fell on the ground in the six yard box and first to react was defender Javi Morales who thrashed the ball home to give Lanzarote a 2-0 advantage to take into the interval.
The Rojillos took their foot off the gas at the beginning of the second half and were relying to hit their opponents on the break. In the space of four minutes Lanzarote had two penalty appeals turned down.
In the 58th minute Miguel sent Rosmen through with a ball down the middle, the 38 year old striker whose fitness defies science was tugged on the shirt by the last defender in the penalty area but the official did not believe there was enough cause for a spot kick.
In the 62nd minute Miguel roasted his defender down the right wing and was also pulled back but once again the officials waived away claims for a penalty.
In between those penalty appeals the Lanzarote keeper produced another top class save down to his left to maintain his sides two goal advantage.
The Lanzarote keeper then made a claim for the man of the match when in the 81st minute he dived high to his left in a brilliant one handed save to make it a hat trick of outstanding saves.
The Las Palmas side were given a lifeline in the 86th minute when defender goalscorer Javi Morales jumped high to clear a cross but clashed heads with Las Palmas sub Edu and the visitors were awarded a penalty. The Lanzarote defender was harshly dealt a second yellow card by the Ref leaving his side with just 10 men.
Agoney guessed correctly from the spot kick and got his fingers to the ball but the power of the strike beat him and the score was 2-1.
There was six minutes of added on time but the Rojillos remained comfortable and were unlucky not to have restored their two goal cushion following good work from Ayoze Pérez who tricked his defender and pulled the ball back from the by-line but Rosmen´s strike hit the side netting.
Overall it was a wonderful weekend for Maxi Barrera´s men but now they must consolidate their position in the playoffs and their next match is away versus 6th placed side CF Unión Viera next Saturday 30th March.
The Gran Canarian side are only four points from the playoff positions and are immense on home soil having won eleven games, drawn two and lost just once this season.
Photos of this match are on Facebook Lanzarote football club.