Another Rung On Another Ladder For Atletico Granadilla

Only in Tenerife, we were nearly late for the promotion play off game in Granadilla as the car was stuck behind a house on wheels. Athletico Granadilla’s first leg was on the morning of the big Romeria fiesta and the traditional rural house style cart was loaded up with revelers in Canarian costume. The big game was a curtain raiser for the celebrations to come in the centre of town and many supporters were fully dressed and enjoying a few beers in the sunshine.

My only previous trips to the Estadio Francisco Suarez had been for evening pre season friendlies with CD Tenerife and didn’t do justice to the beautiful setting with the pine forests of Vilaflor rising in the distance. Granadilla took time to settle, their first decent chance came after 20 minutes when their keeper made a desperate punched clearance under pressure. Encouraged, the home side pushed forward, Amray was persistent on the right wing, veteran stiker Noah (I think he is the one from the bible) has lost some speed over the years around the southern clubs but is still good in the air and caused Jose in goal a few worries.

There wasn’t much to choose between the teams, maybe the visitors were a bit more direct but Marino (pink shirt) in thee home goal coped with them well. His rival stopper looked a weak link and had to scramble away a shot just before half time. Jony of Oviedo had a great opening early in the second half only to be denied by some smart work from Marino. Former CD Tenerife striker Ruben Rosquete arrived from the bench and could have opened the scoring within minutes if the ball had been passed to him in an unmarked position.

Oviedo were hoping to nick an away goal to give them a strong launch pad for the return leg and they started to apply more pressure on the Granadilla defence. Marino took a clout and had to go off with Alexis Oval taking over the gloves. The replacement did ok and Granadilla had the better of the later play, they thought they had scored but the ref ruled it as offside. The game drifted into injury time and Oviedo were under siege, it paid off as captain Ivan Martin floated the ball in from a corner and amid the jostling for position it ended up in the net the ball to the delight of the 1,100 crowd.

It’s a slender lead but the clean sheet could prove vital next week as Granadilla look to get through to the final home and away pair that can lead into the Segunda B. The late goal certainly helped the mood and as we left people were streaming down the hill into the town centre to mix football celebrations with the Romeria fun and games. There would be a few wobbly wagons later in the day.

Over in Alaves it was a much more low key game for CD Tenerife in the first leg of the championship decider for Segunda B. There were changes galore as fringe players were given a run out, Roberto in goal, Sergio Rodriguez at right back, Jesus Alvaro at left back and Ayoze as the main striker with Aridane putting his feet up.

It was a uninspired performance with Tenerife not troubling the home goalie until Sergio had a 58th minute shot. Alberto, Roberto, and Sergio were the pick of the bunch but Alaves had the better forwards with Viquera opening the scoring on the hour. It should have ended as a 1-1 draw as Tenerife had a clear penalty denied for a foul on Chechu in injury time. From there Alaves broke and Viquera scored again as a very disgruntled Chechu got sent off for a second booking. It will be hard to turn it around in next Sundays home leg to lift the trophy but it will be more about thank yous and farewells at the end of a very special season.