|Valencia (3)||Alaves (0)|
|Daniel Wass 2′|
Carlos Soler 45′
Goncalo Guedes 60′
Cristiano Ronaldo may have made global headlines with his sensational return to Manchester United, but in Valencia it was another Portuguese No.7 who stole the spotlight on Friday night. Goncalo Guedes was the man of the hour for Los Che, with a hand in all 3 goals that wiped out Alaves.
This was Los Che’s best performance under Jose Bordalas so far. They were stupendous right from the very start, pummelling their opponents into submission. Alaves simply never stood a chance.
As American rapper Pitbull once sang, ‘Give me everything tonight’. Bordalas must have listened to the song on repeat throughout the entire week. “Give absolutely everything,” he had said in his pre-match conference, “Don’t stop running,” he warned. His own pitbulls were clearly listening.
Upon the referee’s whistle on Friday night, all 11 players entered berserker mode, pressing Alaves so hard that you could almost see the life being squeezed out of them. By the 2nd minute, the home side had already gone in for the kill.
A raking cross-field ball from Carlos Soler found Denis Cheryshev, who combined beautifully on the left flank with Guedes before unleashing a cross into the box. Daniel Wass, making a 60-metre sprint from his own half, finished the move with a clever flick into goal. 1 shot, 1 kill.
Alaves were a wounded animal, and Valencia the rabid canines that kept circling. They could have been 3-0 up by the 10th minute after Guedes hit the post and Omar Alderete’s header missed by just a fraction. It was only a matter of time before the Bats would strike again.
This time, it was through Soler (who else?) who celebrated his call up to the national squad with an outrageous scorpion kick. Jose Gaya’s lofted ball into the box had found Guedes, who in turn fed it to the Valencia No. 10. It’s now 3 goals in 3 games for the red hot midfielder, and Valencia fans were wishing the first half never ended.
But the second half would only bring more of the same as the home side continued to pour forward at every opportunity. They repeatedly bamboozled Alaves with their multiple angles of attacks, switching the ball to either flank at will. Guedes, a nuisance all night, was clearly looking for a goal of his own, and the livewire winger would be duly rewarded in the 60th minute.
This time, it was Alderete who was the chief architect, spraying the ball from deep to Maxi Gomez. The Uruguayan’s velvet first touch set him up perfectly to feed the Portuguese, who extinguished any faint hopes of an Alaves fightback. Who needs CR7 when you have GG7?
At the other end, Valencia also entertained when Alderete induced rapturous cheers with a last-ditch challenge against Mamadou Sylla. New signing Marcos Andre had a lively 20-minute cameo, and even youngster Jesus Vasquez came on to make his league debut. It was the perfect night for the Bats.
We now go into the international break unbeaten, with 7 points out of 9 so far. The momentum is building.