LA LIGA: Levante get last-minute victory in Spanish league


Sun, Sep 01, 2013 - Page 18

Levante UD won their first game of the Spanish league season on Friday when substitute Andreas Ivanschitz scored with the last kick of the game for a 2-1 victory against a 10-man Rayo Vallecano de Madrid.

Rayo was down a man from the 60th minute when Alhassane “Lass” Bangoura was dismissed for kicking Levante’s Jordi Xumetra, but the hosts looked to have earned a comeback draw when substitute Joaquin Larrivey scored in the 79th minute, canceling out Ruben Garcia’s opener.

Rayo were the more aggressive side playing with 10 men, but Levante goalkeeper Keylor Navas made several saves before Xumetra broke free and squared for Ivanschitz to net the winner in dramatic fashion.

Levante had not scored a goal in their first two games, losing one and drawing another.

“Yes, we got the win when we least expected it,” Levante coach Joaquin Caparros said. “When we had more possession and an extra player you couldn’t notice it. [Then] we fell back and lost our confidence, but we got lucky in the end.”

Rayo have lost two straight after their first-round victory.

Elsewhere, Elche forward Yiadom Boakye also netted deep in stoppage-time to snatch a 2-2 draw against a 10-man UD Almeria in a clash between promoted sides.

Almeria dominated early at their Juegos Mediterraneos Stadium, with forward Fernando Soriano heading home Rafael “Rafita” Ramos’ cross at the back post eight minutes in.

Elche’s Eduardo Albacar made it 1-1 in the 32nd minute by scoring a penalty after Sebastian Dubarbier handled the ball in the penalty area.

Almeria went back ahead in first-half stoppage-time when Elche defender Ionut Sapunaru was also called for a handball in the box, giving Jose “Verza” Garcia the opportunity to fire in the spot-kick.

The match turned in Elche’s favor in the 67th when Dubarbier was dismissed with his second booking. Almeria held on until five minutes into added time when Boakye spun in the area and drove the ball in.

Barcelona are to visit Valencia, while Real Madrid host Athletic Bilbao today. Real Sociedad welcome Atletico Madrid, Malaga play at Sevilla and RCD Espanyol face Real Betis Balompie.