Levante climb to fourth
Last Updated: 18/11/12 2:06pm
Martins: On target for Levante
Levante climbed to fourth in the Primera Division as goals from Obafemi Martins and Jose Barkero handed them a 2-0 victory over Deportivo la Coruna at La Riazor.
Martins opened the scoring with his fifth goal in eight games since joining Los Granotes five minutes before half-time but the hosts were given a great chance to get back into the game when Pedro Lopez was shown a second yellow card for handling inside his own area 10 minutes into the second half.
However, Riki blasted the resulting penalty over the bar and, after the numbers had been evened up as Depor goalkeeper Daniel Aranzubia was also sent off for a second bookable offence, Barkero wrapped things up for the visitors with a long-range effort into the bottom-left corner eight minutes from time.
Depor were dealt a blow early on with both of their centre-backs - Carlos Marchena and Ze Castro - having to be replaced within the first 15 minutes. And that was to prove crucial as Martins terrorised Aythami and Abel Aguilar in their absence.
The Nigerian should have opened the scoring when he was through on goal on 18 minutes but he made no mistake with a similar opportunity just before the break as he rounded Aranzubia confidently before stroking the ball into the empty net.
Depor were much more of a threat after the interval, though, and appeared to have given themselves a platform to go on and win the game when Javier Camunas' effort was handled by Lopez and he was given his marching orders.
Riki did not even come close to hitting the target from the spot, though, and his effort ballooned over the bar. The striker had the chance to redeem himself moments later as he was played in by a wonderful pass from Juan Carlos Valeron, but this time Gustavo Munua got down well to block his shot.
The hosts were then also reduced to 10 men as Aranzubia fouled Martins outside the area and was shown a second yellow card having been booked for protesting in the first period.
Due to the earlier injuries, Depor had also used all their substitutes so midfielder Alex Bergantinos had to go in goal.
Despite that, though, Jose Luis Oltra's men continued to look the more dangerous side and Levante were grateful to a number of great interceptions by captain Sergio Ballesteros before they finally made the game safe with the first real effort since Bergantinos went in goal as Barkero lined up a shot from outside the box which had too much pace on it for the stand-in goalkeeper.
Spanish Primera BBVA