Sevilla outclass Valencia

Valencia were a man down from the 25th minute when midfielder Mehmet Topal was shown a red card for a tackle on Martin Caceres on Monday.

Unai Emery’s team put up strong resistance until Negredo came on in the 53rd. One minute later, the striker jumped on the rebound from Careces’ shot to score the opener. Alfaro sealed the victory by heading in Mouhamadou Dabo’s cross from the right in the 77th.

Sevilla is now level with fifth-place Valencia on 17 points, but is behind on goal difference. Real Madrid stayed top with 26 points after continuing its 11-year unbeaten streak against cross-town rival Atletico Madrid with a 2-0 win on Sunday. Barcelona held on to second with 25 points after handing Getafe a 3-1 defeat, while Villarreal kept pace in third with 23 points with its 4-1 victory over Athletic Bilbao.

Sevilla has yet to lose at the Sanchez Pizjuan stadium this season, while Valencia is now winless in its last four outings. Sevilla controlled possession early on and took advantage of Diego Perotti’s speed on the right flank. The Argentine winger soon found Luis Fabiano, who tested goalkeeper Cesar Sanchez with a point-blank strike in the 11th.

Even before Topal’s sending off, Valencia only managed a shot by Juanma Mata that goalkeeper Javier Varas had to stretch his leg to keep out. Gregorio Manzano’s squad tried to press its extra-man advantage, but Cesar was well positioned to easily control a header by Luis Fabiano in the 29th and shots by Perotti and Koffi Romaric in injury time before the break.

Vicente Guaita replaced an injured Cesar in goal at halftime and soon had to deal with a long strike by Sevilla’s Fernando Navarro. Manzano’s decision to add a third striker paid off immediately when Negredo slotted the ball between Guaita’s legs. Sevilla pushed forward after the goal and Luis Fabiano hit the crossbar from a pass by Caceres in the 60th.

Valencia looked for the equaliser, and Aritz Aduriz forced Varas to go to the ground to stop his strike from the edge of the area in the 67th. After Sevilla’s second goal, the opposing ‘keepers kept out clear opportunities by Valencia’s Roberto Soldado and Negredo.

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