The end of the 2019/20 season for Elche CF could not be more bizarre! Elche CF, with the exception of a couple of weeks, have been in the play off positions since the Covid break. They were in 6th position before the penultimate game of the season, when they played away against 7th placed Fuenlabrada. Fuenlabrada won the match 3-1, so the teams 'dosey doed' position. A tantalizing final fixture was forecasted.
The 42nd game of the season took place on Monday 20th. Elche CF in 7th, played middle of the table Oviedo. Fuenlabrada, in 6th place, faced relegation placed Deportivo. This meant that an Elche win and a Fuenlabrada draw or loss would see Elche back in the play offs. Any other result would see Fuenladraba in the play offs.
Elche CF out played their opponents with 57% possession, 14 goal shots 8 of which were on target and 2 of which were converted by Jonathas de Jesus on 24 minutes and Pere Milla on 81 minutes. The 2-1 score line was the result Elche CF needed!
But things are never that simple in Spain!
The Fuenlabrada Deportivo game was postponed! Shortly before the match, having already travelled from Madrid to Galicia, 6 of the Fuenlabrada players tested positive for Covid. By Saturday a total of 28 players and staff at the club had tested positive. 1 player had been admitted to hospital and is said to be in a stable condition with 'non-serious symptoms'. Our thoughts are with all those effected and we hope for a speedy return to full health for them. It is believed that the players may have come into contact with the virus at a Night Venue which they visited to celebrate their win over Elche CF.
Javier Tebas, head of La Liga, announced that the fixture would be rescheduled for the end of July. The results for all other matches are known, and it is impossible for Deportivo to raise themselves out of relegation. In an interesting link, Javier Tebas was also head of La Liga in 2014/15, when Elche became the first ever club to be relegated from the top flight due to financial irregularities. In a further unusual twist of fate, Javier Tebas Llanas, son of Javier Tebas La Liga President, is the Legal Advisor for Funelabrada.
This of course has created controversy. It has been reported that, according to the rules, Fuenlabrada should not be allowed to play and should be awarded 0 points as they were unable to field a team. Both of the Tebas's are citing force majeur as the reason, which means that the inability to field the team was out of club control, and therefore the match should be played.
Finally it was decided that the match should go ahead, and it was played on Friday the 7th of August. By some mirical Deportivo won 2-1, which meant that Elche CF is in the Promotion Play Offs!
When spectators are allowed into stadiums, we will once again be organising coach tours and tickets to all of the Elche CF home matches. Click on the home page of www.eurotourguide.com to sign up to the newsletter for all the latest information about our Coach Tours.