Following a glorious sunny day in Cádiz, fans flooded to the Nuevo Mirandilla for what promised to be an incredible match. It was a fiery start to say the least, tensions threatened to bubble over from the get-go. Referee Soto Grado awarded a Sevilla free kick in the attacking half, however off the ball arguments resulted in a Cádiz player down holding his face and Ramos booked, much to the disgust of the local support, who felt that Ramos merited a red. A member of the Cádiz dugout was also cautioned for his protests.
However the local fans’ frustration was soon forgotten when Lukebakio lost the ball on the right side and Roger’s pass split the defence leaving Chris Ramos with just the keeper to beat. Ramos, keeping his composure, slotted past Nyland. 1-0 Cádiz inside 8 minutes.
Sevilla could have found themselves further behind after 20 minutes. In an open contest, a dangerous cross found its way to the back post, but Juanlu’s expert defending denied Machis’s sweetly timed volley.
The away side’s first clear-cut chance came a couple of minutes later. A whipped ball from the right found Ramos in acres of space, but his first-time header was straight at Cádiz keeper Ledesma.
Chances kept coming for both sides, but Sevilla were once again architects of their own downfall. Losing the ball from a goal kick gifted possession to Roger, whose pin-point pass provided another assist for the home side, this time to Darwin Machis. Not to be denied this time, his left-footed shot whistled past Nyland into the bottom corner. 2-0 within half an hour.
Sevilla, looking for a way back into the game, had the ball in the back of the net when Ramos volleyed in from a corner. However, it was chalked off for an offside against Ocampos, adjudged to have impeded the goalkeeper’s line of sight, much to the bemusement of the travelling fans.
The 37th minute saw the deficit halved. After great work from Soumaré to win the ball back, a flowing move ended with Ocampos flicking a header into the bottom left corner from Juanlu’s cross. A simply superb finish. Game on.
Sevilla could have gone into half time level. Mariano had a free header within the six-yard box, but, when it looked easier to score, he somehow miscued his effort back towards where the cross came from. 2-1 at the break.
We saw more of the same speed and intensity at the start of the second half with both keepers called into action early on. First, Lukebakio had an effort well saved after being released by an excellent Ocampos cross-field pass. Then, Nyland produced a stunning triple save to deny Cádiz a two-goal cushion.
Rakitić's equaliser was his 50th goal in Sevilla colours
On the hour mark, Sevilla brought themselves level. A bouncing ball found its way to Rakitić on the edge of the box and the Croat’s volley sailed over Cádiz keeper Ledesma and into the top-left corner. Rakitić’s equaliser was his 50th goal in Sevilla colours.
As the clock ticked on, both sides had chances to edge in front. Mariano and Gudelj both had long range efforts that needed to be saved and an Ocampos header from Rakitić’s corner was well dealt with by the keeper. Cádiz almost found an opening soon after, but Nyland’s smart work allowed him to steal the ball from the attacker’s feet before he was able to get a shot away.
Edging towards the 90-minute mark, chances started to fizzle out, the game becoming a little disjointed with the introduction of substitutions. But you only need one chance in football. Sadly that chance could not be converted. A ricochet saw the ball arrive at Óliver Torres’s feet during injury time with the defence seemingly stopped. But his effort lacked conviction and the Cádiz keeper dealt with the danger.
It was an exhilarating game from start to finish. A feisty match spurred on by the crowd’s energy. 2-2 the final score – a point on the road rescued for Diego Alonso’s men.