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  • Getafe 1-0 Real Betis: Castro great-finish

    La Liga leaders Real Betis' 100 per cent start to the season was ended after they lost 1-0 to Getafe at the Coliseum Alfonso Perez, Monday 26/09/2011.
    Diego Castro's 31st-minute strike saw the struggling Madrid side register their first win of the campaign and move out of the relegation zone.

    Despite suffering their first defeat after winning promotion back up to the top flight last term, Betis remain top of the table after five matches, one point above defending champions Barcelona.

    Roque Santa Cruz started up front for Betis but the striker, on loan from Manchester City, was unable to replicate the form which saw him score twice in the 4-3 win over Real Zaragoza last time out.

    Getafe manager Luis Garcia Plaza was adamant that his players were performing better than their league position suggested, and they backed up his claims by taking control of the first half after a shaky start.

    Pedro Leon, back at the club on loan just a year after he was sold to Real Madrid, fired an early shot wide before seeing his long-range free-kick punched away by Betis keeper Inaki Goitia.

    Right-back Juan Valera was a constant threat down the flank for Getafe, and his canny diagonal ball over the top caught the Betis defence flat-footed, only for Castro to fail to get a telling touch on the pass.

    Valera had more success in picking out his team-mate on the half-hour mark, when his cross went over the pack inside the box and fell for the unmarked Castro to take a touch and fire into the roof of the net. The goal was Castro's first for the club since his summer move from Sporting Gijon.

    Getafe had done well to nullify the creative impact of Salva Sevilla for most of the first half, and 10 minutes after the break the playmaker was replaced by Betis boss Pepe Mel for another striker in the form of Jorge Molina.

    That substitution almost paid dividends when Molina rose highest to meet Jonathan Pereira's cross only to glance his header wide. Moments later Pereira himself forced a good save from Miguel Angel Moya in the Getafe goal before Santa Cruz's header was blocked.

    The final quarter of an hour was very open as Getafe substitute Pablo Sarabia had a shot from a wide angle saved by the legs of Goitia and Santa Cruz's shot on the turn was parried by Moya.

    Betis had one final chance in the 90th minute when Benat Extebarria's strike from range drew a brilliant save from Moya as the strike was bound for the top corner, a stop which secured a vital three points for the home side.

    Tony Mabert - on Twitter @tony_mabert / Eurosport

    Team Line-up:

    Getafe: Moya; Valera, Cata Diaz, Lopo, Mané; Ruben Perez, Lacen; Pedro Leen, Barrada, Diego Castro, Guiza
    Real Betis: Goitia; Chica, Mario, Dorado, Nacho; Salva Sevilla, Iriney, Matilla, Jefferson Montero; Santa Cruz, Jonathan Pereira.


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