Late goal by teenager lifts Valencia out of relegation zone


Javier Guerra's beautiful shot from distance in extra time gives Valencia the win

Javier Guerra curls a shot in from long range in extra time, giving Valencia the 2-1 win over Real Valladolid.

MADRID -- — It took a stoppage-time goal by teenager Javi Guerra for Valencia to seal its comeback and leave the Spanish league's relegation zone on Thursday.

The 19-year-old midfielder entered as an 89th-minute substitute and scored the winner four minutes later to give Valencia a 2-1 win over Valladolid, sending the home crowd into a frenzy at Mestalla Stadium.

The victory, Valencia's second in a row after a run of three losses and a draw, lifted the club to 16th place, two points clear of the relegation zone.

Guerra, who came through Valencia's youth squads and is touted as one of Spain's promising youngsters, got past a defender just outside the area before sending a left-footed shot into the top corner for his first goal with Valencia's main squad.

Valladolid, sitting in 14th place and coming off two straight victories, was two points ahead of Valencia with seven matches remaining.

The visitors opened the scoring with Cyle Larin in a breakaway in the sixth minute. Valencia equalized with a header by Mouctar Diakhaby in the 60th after Valladolid goalkeeper Jordi Masip let the ball get past him thinking it was going to go wide.

Valencia last played in the second division in 1986-87.


Villarreal defeated Espanyol 4-2 at home to move to fifth place and stay in contention for the final Champions League spot. The win left the club five points behind fourth-place Real Sociedad.

Etienne Capoue scored twice for Villarreal, which also got on the board with Dani Parejo and Nicolas Jackson.

Espanyol stayed in second-to-last-place, four points from safety. It hasn't won in eight straight matches, with seven losses and a home draw against Cadiz in the previous round.

Barcelona has an 11-point lead over defending champion Real Madrid at the top of the standings.


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