A fleeting appearance by Ángel Rodríguez in the middle of a very tactical match, boring and with few occasions, gave Getafe the victory against Athletic (1-0) with which screwed in the fourth and last place that gives right to play the next edition of the Champions League.
The Coliseum Alfonso Pérez was preparing for another stake in the Champions League. On this occasion, the visiting team, unlike the Leganés two days ago, maintained options to get close to fourth place in possession of José Bordalás' squad, which showed symptoms of a punctured balloon after chaining three duels without winning. Athletic, euphoric with its latest results and its climb in the classification, could get fully into the fight with a victory in a complicated feud. In addition, the day was perfect to do it, with the technician Gaizka Garitano newly renovated and with Aritz Aduriz on the bench three months after being injured.
By the evolution of both, the script was more favorable for Athletic, which, at least during the first 45 minutes, was somewhat less raucous than Getafe. And it is that Bordalás bet to play with eight field players totally defensive. Among them, four defenders and two laterals turned into extremes like the Frenchman Dimitri Foulquier and the Uruguayan Mathias Oliveira. Both, along with two destroying midfielders such as Mauro Arambarri and Serbian Nemanja Maksimovic, turned Jorge Molina and Jaime Mata into two islands in the middle of nowhere that almost did not touch the ball in the first act. The Getafe, blunt, thick, predictable and ultra defensive, did not create anything at all. And, in addition, Foulquier signed a first time that brushed the disaster. For that reason, Bordalás, restless for the way he was taking the matter, changed to French by Francisco Portillo when there were still five minutes left for the break.
While Getafe looked for their identity on the pitch, Athletic simply dedicated themselves to waiting for their chance without doing anything special. He defended well and did not create anything either. Only a chained error by Foulquier in a control and the Togolese Djené Dakonam in a punt gave Garitano's men the only option of the whole first half. It had Iñigo Córdoba, who was only before goalkeeper David Soria to send his shot to the goalkeeper's body. That was the only disturbing moment of a tostón of the first part that ended to the relief of the nearly 12,000 spectators present at the Coliseum Alfonso Pérez.
In the resumption, Bordalás took another step forward. He took Olivera from the field to introduce Ángel Rodríguez and Getafe definitely changed his record. Suddenly, with three strikers on the green, for the first time it disturbed the goal of Athletic with a shot from Jaime Mata that licked the base of the left post of the goal defended by Iago Herrerín. However, that spark was a mirage. Everything stayed the same, although at least Bordalás was the only one who tried to turn things around. He moved his chips well, waved the chessboard and after almost 78 minutes of jamming he achieved his goal.
It was Angel, again, like the last day when he gave a point to his team coming off the bench against Espanyol, who was responsible for materializing that small local reaction with an action that was gold for his team. The striker of the blue box took advantage of a good pass from Portillo to hit on the hand to hand to Herrerín and gave the reason to Bordalás with his changes.
The 1-0, with 12 minutes ahead, was great for the azulón team, which with the punctures of Valencia and Alavés, could settle in the fourth position. He had a small stretch of time ahead to withstand the attacks of Athletic. He got it, he even had time to increase his income with a shot by Jaime Mata at the post, and the dream of the fourth place is maintained by Getafe and diluted by Bilbao.
Getafe: Soria Damián Suárez, Bruno, Djené, Antunes; Foulquier (Portillo, min 40), Arambarri, Maksimovic, Olivera (Angel, min 57); Jorge Molina (Ignasi Miquel, min 93) and Jaime Mata.
Athletic: Herrerín; De Marcos, Yeray Álvarez, Iñigo Martínez, Yuri Berchiche; San José, Dani García; Ibai Gómez (Susaeta, min 16), Raúl García, Córdoba (Aduriz, min 79); and Williams (Kodro, min 70).
Goals: 1-0, min. 78: Angel.
Referee: José Luis González González (Castilla León Committee). He showed yellow cards to San José (11 min) by Athletic and Damián Suárez (32 min) and Ángel (60 min) by Getafe.
Incidents: Match corresponding to the thirty-first day of LaLiga Santander played at the Coliseum Alfonso Pérez before 11,617 spectators. The Athletic players wore a black bracelet on the occasion of the death of the player Ángel Sertutxa.