The demarcation that Espanyol seeks

If LaLiga SmartBank were the Tour de France, right now Espanyol, Mallorca and Almería are the favorites of a squad that is losing units because the road is steep. There is no doubt that Vicente Moreno's team wears number 1 and wears the yellow jersey, as the main candidate for promotion due to its history and its squad, full of gregarious stars, sprinters and a leader like Raúl de Tomás , icon of the most expensive template in the history of the category. But, stage by stage and despite setting the pace of the race, the Blue and White team is still waiting for that demarcation to ensure success.

Espanyol Shield / Flag

In the 22 games played, the Blue and Whites have been leaders in 14 of them with a maximum difference compared to the third-placed team of four points. That happened in five days, the last two ago, after finishing the first round. In the other eight days, Espanyol was second four times and only four others fell from direct promotion, two of them in the league start (days 2 and 3) and the following after the two consecutive defeats against Leganés and Girona in the first round (days 14 and 15).

The trajectory of Espanyol

one 1st 0
2 4th -2
3 3rd -2
4 2nd 0
5 1st +2
6 1st +1
7 1st +3
8 1st +2
9 1st +2
10 1st +4
eleven 1st +4
12 1st +4
13 1st +1
14 4th -one
fifteen 3rd -2
16 2nd +1
17 2nd +1
18 2nd +1
19 1st +4
twenty 1st +1
twenty-one 1st +4
22 1st +3

Curiously, this day Espanyol faces a key stage, receiving Rayo Vallecano, another of the aspirants who showed on Wednesday in the Cup against Barcelona that he arrives in a good moment of form. The parakeets, tied on points with Mallorca (which receives Girona) and with three advantage with Almería (which receives Castellón), can leave Rayo at 11 points or, in case of losing, see how the distance is shortened just five points. Or what is the same: eliminate an opponent or see how the upper zone is compressed before the final stretch.

As the players report in the press room, the squad focuses on trying to win each day without paying attention to the classification, aware that pressure can be a factor that works against them. Just in case, Moreno already warned the week before that “the goals can be important”, given the equality at the head of the table. When the halfway point of the race has passed, everything is uncertain in this Tour de Segunda. Everyone expects the demarraje of the favorite Espanyol.