CD Tenerife’s League Whimper Before Badalona Play Off Bang

With the Santa Cruz thermometers popping in the mid 30 degrees, met office advice was not to do anything too energetic. CD Tenerife took this to heart with a low key, plodding display and lost 2-1 at home to RSD Alcala – saving them from relegation. Thankfully last day of season blues affected all our rivals for the opening play off round and mass defeats ensured second spot and Badalona away and home over the next two Sundays.

Suspensions forced changes onto CD Tenerife, Meji took over the left back spot from Llorente but the big surprise in midfield was a first start for local youngster Sandro, a few weeks after his brief sub appearance – it was an inspired choice. Just 9 muntes into the game Sandro took a free kick deep on the right and wafted in a perfectly weighted ball to the far post where Aridane was waiting to accept the gift header. This should have been the springboard to repeat the 4-0 away win but Tenerife were too casual and Alcala too hungry and when Kike lost the ball to Sesma he fed Alexander who charged at the home goal. Pablo Sicilia and David Medina parted and he raced through to tuck the ball past Sergio Aragoneses for a 1-1 scoreline, now it was time for us to really sweat.

It was all a bit untidy, Meji didn’t look comfortable at left back and without Kitoko the midfield couldn’t set the tempo for the game. Sandro didn’t get the ball laid off to him as often as he needed but when it was at his feet he delivered some incisive passes and crosses, Aridane was working hard up front but Perona was a little deeper and his goal scoring edge of recent weeks seemed rather blunt. Into the second half and Tenerife perked up initially, Kike had a good chance from a Perona cross but Juancho managed to cover his goal. Sandro got booked for a over zealous appeal for a penalty and coach Medina did the smart thing and took him off to avoid spoiling an impressive full debut. Zazo was his replacement but his fresh legs made little difference to Tenerife’s cause, Kike saw his shot bounce off the crossbar after Aridane had set him up, the big forward departed soon after injured, Kiko Raton was a natural replacement up front.

Alcala were desperate to save their Segunda B lives and pushed forward, Tenerife repeatedly failed to clear the danger and Alexander turned superbly in the box to fire home the winning goal after 74 minutes. The Tenerife players must have been aware of the other scores coming in on the giant screen, basically there was nothing to fight for, the final whistle saw the Alcala bench erupt with joy – a great result for them and for the 9.370 crowd it was a timely reminder that the hard work is just about to begin.