SD Huesca and R. Zaragoza share out the spoils in a pulsating derby

Seoane put the hosts ahead, but Real Zaragoza hit back before the interval in a hard-fought showpiece in front of a sell-out El Alcoraz crowd (1-1)

Sociedad Deportiva Huesca were held to a 1-1 LaLiga SmartBank draw as Real Zaragoza came from behind at El Alcoraz in matchday 36. The home crowd, totally devoted to Xisco’s side, saw a couple of goals in the first half from Seoane and Azón, in an Aragon derby where the standards were high but which definitely made the grade (1-1). A point apiece means one more point for the Altoaragoneses, who continue picking up valuable points at this final stage of LaLiga season, where they haven’t been defeated in the last five games.

It was clearly a different match, and you could tell from the atmosphere of fervent, boisterous intensity around the stadium. Inside there was a football party in front of a sell-out El Alcoraz crowd in its biggest accommodation of tickets ever thanks to 8,143 fans. The encounter saw a lively start by both sides, but without any decent attempts, except for a finish from Francés saved by Andrés. In the 31st, Seoane slotted home a dangerous set-piece near the by-line. The midfielder struck, the clearance fell to himself and he made the most of his chance to fire a rocket next to the far post. Only 7 minutes after that, the visitors responded from a set-piece. Eugeni took it quickly and it was Azón who took advantage from it to make it 1-1. Until the interval, the most dangerous opportunity fell to the hosts. Seoane cleverly found Esriche with a lofted through pass, and the latter hit the side-netting.

Xisco opted for a double half-time substitution: Timor and Marc Mateu were replaced by Lago Junior and Mikel Rico, and the latter made an immediate impact. The clash was clear in an energetic second half at El Alcoraz, and the Oscenses grew into the game. Escriche won a challenge, drove the ball and struck it, sending it wide across goal. Lago Junior was involved in Huesca’s attacking play from the moment he entered the pitch. The Azulgranas had an appeal for a penalty for handball turned down by VAR. Xisco made another double change, bringing on Darío and Valentín for Joaquín and Escriche. In the closing stages, when Ferreiro replaced Ratiu, both sides slowed the pace of the game down. However, Xisco’s men enjoyed a brief flurry of big chances in second-half stoppage time that could have changed the scoring, but Ignasi Miquel’s header hit the bar and the sides were tied 1-1.