CD Torrevieja 0 Orihuela CF 3 – BY STEVE HIBBERD

Nelson Mandela Stadium heralded a new era for CD Torrevieja, but also signalled a very sad day for them.  Vicente Garcia Stadium had been the home of Torrevejense football for many years, having witnessed many magical moments in both Preferente, 3, and 2b divisions.  It was founded on 18 November 1971, and is one of a few natural grass surfaces that exist in the Valencia region.  But following closure of changing rooms and the main grandstand for safety reasons, plus the cost of regular maintenance of the pitch, the club decided enough was enough, reluctantly making the decision to permanently relocate to nearby Nelson Mandela.

Following an opening home victory against Almoradi, another local team were to make the short journey across the Veja Baja region.  Orihuela have started the season with 2 consecutive draws, and arrived knowing that the last time these 2 sides met, bragging rights most certainly went their way.  Torry meanwhile, fought back well from an early 3 goal salvo at Villarreal last week, when goals from Zapata then Salamanca reduced the deficit.  Unfortunately, the impressive striker Zapata has elected to ply his trade elsewhere at div 2b side Palencia, but hopefully manager Gabi Correa will soon be able to fill that gap.

There were two changes to the Torry lineup from last week with Abraham and Adrian coming in for Melli who was relegated to the bench, and Zapata who has moved on to pastures new. Also making the bench was former Torry youth, but more recently of At. Madrid, Damian, who was back with the club after his exploits in the capital.

The game itself saw Torry making all the running with the visitors kept to long range efforts, but two good opportunities both falling to Matheus. He really should have done better when put through on the 15 minute mark by Lewis but his delayed shot allowed the Orihuela defence to clear the danger.

Perona was first in the book following a nasty challenge on Carrasco but the Torry veteran following him into the referee’s book just 5 minutes later when he went in search of retribution. In between time a mix up in the Torrevejense defence allowed Ayo to put the visitors in front with a well struck shot from the edge of the box.

There was an effort by Carrasco just prior to the interval but it was a point blank save from Marcano on Antonio that kept the home side in the game as they left the field for the half time interval.

However it took less than 3 minutes of the 2nd period for Antonio to put matters right when the Orihuela forward got the goal that he had earlier been denied to all but put the game to bed. And what an embarrassingly simple goal it was as the ball just about trickled over the line with the wrongfooted Marcano diving away from the ball.

The home side huffed and puffed but they just couldn’t get back into the game. Indeed it was largely Orihuela who were in the ascendency with the home side were clearly not enjoying  the move to their new home.

With the Torry fans streaming out of the gates they were largely spared the disappointment of seeing their side fall a further goal behind when substitute Siro ran at the defence before squeezing home from a tight angle on 94 minutes.

Next week, with the pressure for points beginning to mount, and the manager and fans wondering from where they are likely to come, the trip north to Xàtiva where Torry take on high riding CD Olímpic