Stuani dances in the rain and Girona caresses the Champions League

Girona is lucky to have turned Montilivi into a fortress in the final stretch of the season.

Oliver Thansan
Oliver Thansan
30 March 2024 Saturday 22:22
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Stuani dances in the rain and Girona caresses the Champions League

Girona is lucky to have turned Montilivi into a fortress in the final stretch of the season. Because if the away results have not been good lately, the numbers at home bring them closer to being able to play in the Champions League next season. Even with an epic included, like on this occasion, against an always dangerous Betis who they beat with a goal from Stuani in added time. The Uruguayan made Dovbyk's double good and left David López's black afternoon in defense as an anecdote, something that Willian José took advantage of by scoring the two goals.

The first dispute was in possession with equal balances that did not translate into superiority or occasions. And that, despite the attempts of Portu i Tsygankov for the local wings and the teaching of Isco in three quarters of the field on the Betic side.

In fact, the first clear chance did not come until half an hour and it was thanks to a cross from Portu himself looking for Dovbyk's head. The Murcian was once again the solution for Míchel, this time due to Savinho's suspension due to suspension, and he understood perfectly with the Ukrainian. Dovbyk finished off against the opposition of Chadi Riad, who committed a penalty by deflecting the ball with his hand. There was a VAR review for Gil Manzano, in everyone's sights for invalidating a goal against Madrid's Bellingham and especially in Montilivi for how he harmed them weeks ago against Real Sociedad.

The pity for the locals is that the joy over Dobvyk's goal from 11 meters did not last long and just before the break, a glaring error by David López, again when the ball was released, turned into an assist for Willian José who was able to equalize with an empty goal by beating an advanced Gazzaniga.

On another rainy afternoon in Montilivi, the goal fell like a bucket of cold water although Dobvyk was responsible for raising spirits again at the beginning of the second half, culminating a great play by Girona to beat Rui Silva after a pass from Portu as well.

However, the script of the first half would be repeated moments later thanks to a counterattack by Betis, with a center towards Willian José, who was able to finish at will after David López was once again in the photo, failing to rebound.

And when everything indicated that the teams would share the points, Stuani, having just come on, acrobatically collected a clearance from Rui Silva to score the winning goal and put his team within one foot and a half of the Champions League.

Girona: Gazzaniga, Eric Garcia, David López (Stuani 83), Blind, Yan Couto, I. Martín (Juanpe 97), Aleix Gª, M. Gutiérrez, Tsygankov (Y. Herrera 82), Portu (Pablo Torre 83) and Dovbyk

Coach: Míchel Sánchez

Betis: Rui Silva, Ruibal, Pezzella, C.Riad (Papastathopoulos 46), Abner (Miranda 77), Guido Rodriguez, Isco, Fraguas, Fekir (W. Carvalho 62), Ayoze Perez (Chimy Avila 62) (Rodri 84) and Willian Joseph

Coach: Manuel Pellegrini

Referee: Gil Manzano (Extremeño team)

Cards: yellow to I.Martín, Pablo Torre and Yangel Herrera, from Girona; and Isco, C. Riad, Chimy Ávila and Fornals, from Betis

Goals: 1-0 Dovbyk (p)(36), 1-1 Willian José (45), 2-1 Dovbyk (65), 2-2 Willian José (76), 3-2 Stuani (92)

Stadium: Montilivi