Valencia move up to third, Tarragona relegated


Madrid : Valencia kept alive their hopes of snatching the Spanish league title with a 1-0 win over mid-table Mallorca.

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Valencia won late Saturday thanks to a goal just two minutes from time by winger Joaquin Sanchez.

Sanchez was set up by super-sub Jorge Lopez and scored with a low, right-foot drive just inside the far post. "It was an important goal," said Sanchez, "since it keeps us up there at the top, battling away."

Valencia now have 65 points from 35 games, just one point behind joint leaders Real Madrid and Barcelona. Valencia are now one point above UEFA Cup winners Sevilla, who play Sunday at Deportivo Coruna.

In fifth place, no less than six points behind Sevilla, are Zaragoza, who beat lowly Athletic Bilbao 4-3 Saturday.

Valencia's win damaged Zaragoza's chances of snatching fourth place.

Zaragoza were beating Bilbao 4-1 by halftime, after goals from Diego Milito, Carlos Diogo, Sergio Garcia and an own goal from Ander Murillo.

Zaragoza staged a brave comeback in the second half, and striker Aritz Aduriz gave them hope with two more goals to add to his first-half score.

Bilbao are fourth from bottom with 34 points.

Tarragona have just 25 points. Then come Celta Vigo and Real Sociedad with 30 points, followed by Bilbao on 34, Levante on 36 and Betis now on 37.