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Villarreal B pushing for playoffs, and a match-fixing scandal in our Segunda B group

Key matches coming up, starting this weekend.

Maria Jose Segovia

Villarreal’s second team continued its push to get into the promotion playoffs with 2-0 win over Ebro. This, combined with Badalona’s loss away to Gava, means the B-boys are now two points behind Badalona (currently in fourth) and four points behind Valencia Mestalla in third. The top four teams make the playoffs.

Villarreal have six matches left: unfortunately only two are at home, against Hercules and Atletico Baleares, both just behind us in the table. The away matches are against Levante and Mallorca B, and against Atletico Saguntino (this coming weekend) and Alcoyano.

Badalona have home matches against Barcelona B, Llagostera and Eldense, but that last match may not happen. Eldense lost 12-0 to Barca B and the match is widely suspected of having been fixed. Not by Barcelona or anyone related to them, I hasten to add, but the Eldense board suspects an Italian investment fund who had put money into the club.

Eldense were going to be relegated anyhow, but now their board is talking about either resigning from the Segunda B now, or using youth-teamers to play out the string.

Match-fixing has been reported in Spain for a number of years at the top levels from time to time, but nothing has been done about it. It’s believed to have infiltrated lower leagues, where there is very little scrutiny of matches, for the most part.

Most such suspicions have either centered around gambling interests in Singapore or such places trying to influence the outcome of a match, or get a desired scoreline; if a group of investors put up some money in a struggling team in order to somehow use that position to influence matches, that would be very bad news.