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The World Seen With  A Football Fan's Eye


20.03.2016 PRIMERA DIVISION 2015/2016
Valencia - Celta Vigo 0:2

Black cloud gathered first time over Valencia's manager after 0:7 loss against Barcelona in Copa del Rey back in ealry February. Soon thereafter the Englishman enjoyed some luck The Bats beat Raid Vienna 6:0 at home, in the Europe's League encounter. Which postponed the execution, the more that Valencia convincingly won againts the Austrian team again (4:0), this time away. Yet a series of league defeats had questioned Valencia fans affection towards the team and specifically - its manager. 
The match against Celta Vigo seemed a perfect opportunity for Gary Neville to repair his somewhat undermined image - after all neither Real Madrid nor Barcelona was supposed to be hosted - yet quite a demanding opponent who maintained fair chances for securing next season's Europe's League (if not an elite's CL qualification) appearances. 
The hosts started off with a lot of vigor and engagement to clear satisfaction of the audience looking for at least a small success. Soon chaos burgled into the team and Neville's screaming towards his players looked frustrating first and funny next - none of the players seemed to have understood commands of the Englishman and it looked as if this was not necessarily about the language barrier. On a face value (I was sitting just a few meters from the Valencia substitute bench) Neville's non verbal communication was at least inconsistent.
The goalless half time score did not herald a disaster to the local fans - and the said disaster took place in the last ten minutes of the game. Few minutes into the second half Neville decided to launch two bizarre substitutions: firstly, one defender replaced another one, then the only quality striker (and same time the team's captain), Paco Alcacer, was removed from the pitch in the 79th minute. The nasty outcome came immediately: the guest scored ftheir first goal the same minute after a perfectly performed  fast break. The second goal was scored just four minutes later after Hugo Mallo ridiculed Valencia's defenders and goalkeeper through his solo perforance on the right wing. If it had not been for Celta's flippancy and lacking accuracy, they could have scored 2-3 goals more yet decided to maintain the result and save energy for the next Primera Division encounters. It is easy to guess which kind of wording was chosen by Valencia fans towards Neville himself as well as Peter Lim (the club owner) sitting in the VIP sector of the stadium. No surprise, yearning after the past glory is immense and effects of the club ownership moderate so far. No successors of Mario Kempes or Gaizka Mendietta at sight and it looks like the Valencia fans need to be very patient.