MALAGA take on Getafe at La Rosaleda on Sunday (kick-off 5pm) following a comprehensive 5-1 thrashing at the hands of Valencia at the Mestalla.
Ernesto Valverde’s team, one of Malaga’s direct rivals for a top four spot, produced an astonishing four-goal blitz inside six first-half minutes to leave the Costa del Sol outfit’s hopes of qualifying for next season’s Champions League hanging by a thread.
subject to their appeal against a one-year ban.
The hosts opened the scoring through Dani Parejo, who took advantage of a fortunate rebound off Martin Demichelis to regain possession and comfortably slot past Willy Caballero.
Less than two minutes later Aly Cissokho skipped down the left past Manuel Iturra and Jesus Gamez before crossing for Soldado to turn home at the far post. The Spain striker then scored a third from the penalty spot on the half-hour mark, Demichelis having brought down both him and Ever Banega inside the area, and amazingly Valencia made it four just a minute after that. Brazilian international Jonas found himself free down the right and Caballero could only push out his angled cross-shot, which Sergio Canales gratefully fired into an empty net.
The visitors appeared to be in a state of shock but finally threw themselves a slim lifeline on the stroke of half-time, with Julio Baptista’s free-kick finding the top corner after he had expertly curled the ball over the defensive wall.
However, the four-goal cushion was restored 10 minutes after the restart when Banega cut in from the left and sent his shot past Caballero and high into the net following some poor defending from Gamez.