Valencia fans jeered and
whistled again after their team were held to a 1-1 draw at home
to La Liga surprise package Levante in the city derby on Sunday.
Valencia have only won once at the Mestalla in the league
this year and, although they remain third and are in the Europa
League quarter-finals, pressure is mounting on coach Unai Emery.
A clever pass from Aritz Aduriz opened the way for Jonas to
give the hosts a 35th-minute lead but they failed to build on
the advantage and allowed their opponents back into the game.
Levante levelled when Arouna Kone fired home after 53
minutes and, with both sides going close to grabbing a late
winner, the impatience from the home fans grew to a crescendo at
the final whistle.
Valencia have 48 points from 30 games with eight left ahead
of Malaga in fourth on 47 and fifth-placed Levante with 45. Only
the top three get an automatic Champions League place.
"A draw is a bad result and we are not satisfied," Emery
told reporters. "The fans have protested the way they did but
they supported us during the game.
"I am not worried about dropping out of the Champions League
places but it us up to me to change this dynamic and find
solutions," he said, adding that club president Manuel Llorente
had spoken to him after the game saying the team had to improve.
Leaders Real Madrid, on 78 points, took another step towards
the title with a 5-1 rout of Osasuna in Pamplona on Saturday,
when Cristiano Ronaldo and Gonzalo Higuain both bagged a brace.
Real remain six points clear of chasing Barcelona, who were
2-0 winners at home to Athletic Bilbao also on Saturday.
Europa League quarter-finalists Atletico Madrid kept up the
push for a return to Europe next season with a 3-0 home win over
near neighbours Getafe that put them seventh with 42 points.
Argentine Eduardo Salvio looped in a header before the break
and Brazilian Diego Ribas, back after injury, doubled the lead
in the 61st minute at the second attempt.
Colombia striker Radamel Falcao tapped in his 20th goal of
the campaign near the end.
Espanyol are eighth with 41 points after a scrappy 0-0 draw
at Villarreal, who sit four points above the relegation places
in 17th with 32.
In Sunday's other game Real Sociedad moved away from the
danger zone by thrashing Rayo Vallecano 4-0 at home.
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