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Immediate reaction: Real Madrid Castilla 1-2 Rayo Majadahonda

Back-to-back defeats in similar circumstances

CF Fuenlabrada v Real Madrid Castilla - Primera RFEF Photo by Angel Martinez/Getty Images

Real Madrid Castilla had to bounce back this weekend, having thrown away a two-goal lead against San Fernando to lose 3-2 and drop out of the top two in Primera RFEF Group 1 last time out. Mid-table Rayo Majadahonda were the side to stand in their way, and there was a depressing sense of déjà vu as they fell to another late defeat, having led for 83 minutes of this match.

It took two late goals, with Rafa Marín chesting the ball into his own goal in injury time to condemn the team to defeat, after a match in which Castilla will feel that they should have taken all three points.

If coach Raúl was looking for a reaction from his players, he certainly got one at the very start of the game. There were only 4 minutes and 24 seconds on the clock when Noel López fired the ball past Rayo Majadahonda goalkeeper Lucho. He moved to the near post and slid to get on the end of Peter González’s cross into the box from the left flank.

The ball had barely entered Castilla’s half by the time Noel had opened the scoring, and that domination continued. Sergio Arribas looked lethal cutting in from the right flank, while Peter contributed similarly down the left.

With Noel as the focal point down the middle, Rayo Majadahonda struggled to cope initially and dropped an extra man into midfield to shrink some of the half spaces that Arribas and Peter were moving into.

Castilla had chances to extend their lead, but they did not make the most of them, with one chance from Arribas at the far post being tipped over the bar. Substitute Nico Paz also tested Majadahonda with a powerful volley shortly after coming on.

At the other end, Rayo Majadahonda felt hard done by when referee Carlos Calderiña Pavón ruled out a goal for the visitors after Mario de Luis lost control of the ball and Nando arrived first to tap it into an empty net. De Luis was lucky again when he took down Jeisson in a one-on-one on the edge of the box later in the second half.

Coming off the back of the humiliation suffered against San Fernando last weekend, maintaining that defensive strength through to the very end was a challenge for this young team.

On the touchline, Raúl was more interested in organising the back line and ensuring that his players did not get carried away pushing forwards. The coach had clearly learned from the mistakes made a week ago, and dropped the team into a back five for the final 10 minutes of the game.

That meant that we saw less of Rafa Obrador and Vinícius Tobías’ runs down the flanks in the final stage, instead sitting deep alongside the back three of Edgar, Rafa Marín and Álvaro Carrillo.

Even with that, it wasn’t enough. David Rodríguez was the man to equalise for Rayo Majadahonda right at the death, on 87 minutes, as a loose ball in the box fell his way and he sent the ball curling in at the far post.

Castilla pushed to the end, looking to make the most of six minutes of added time, but it wasn’t to be. Spaces began to open up on the counter and Rayo Majadahonda looked just as likely to score as Castilla, with a flurry of yellow cards for Castilla players as counter after counter was hacked down in desperation.

One of those led to a free-kick from a deep central position which was floated in, only for Rafa Marín to be the unfortunate man to chest the ball into his own goal under pressure in the scrap of players in the box on 95 minutes.

The defeat means that Castilla remain in third place in Primera RFEF Grupo 1, but have now suffered consecutive defeats for the first time this season.

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