Spanish La Liga: Fran Rico rescues point for Granada against Real Sociedad
Last Updated: 11/01/15 9:39pm
Fran Rico rescued a much-needed point as his Granada side claimed a 1-1 draw against Real Sociedad at Los Carmenes on Sunday night.
Carlos Vela handed the visitors the lead by converting a penalty 10 minutes before the break and Fran Rico equalised, also from the spot, deep into the second half.
The point left Granada three points from safety at the bottom of the Primera Division after fellow strugglers Elche earlier saw off Athletic Bilbao 2-1, while David Moyes' side moved up a spot into 12th - but just two points behind ninth-placed Celta Vigo.
Sociedad coach Moyes welcomed back goalkeeper Geronimo Rulli and striker Vela, who recovered from niggles they sustained in the 1-0 win over Barcelona last weekend.
On-loan Granada winger Lass Bangoura could have put the hosts ahead midway through the first half before Jean-Sylvain Babin got his head onto Rico's corner, only to be denied by Rulli.
Inigo Martinez had a great chance to put the visitors ahead just after the half-hour mark but his header was parried to safety by Granda stopper Oier Olazabal.
And just five minutes later, Sociedad took the lead after Sergio Canales was felled in the box and referee Juan Martinez Munuera pointed to the spot.
Vela made no mistake as he slotted home from 12 yards, firing low into the bottom-right corner.
The hosts began the second half strongly, with striker Youssef El Arabi passing up two fine chances to equalise within five minutes of the restart.
First the Frenchman shot over the bar from just outside the box, and he then sent a header wide from close range.
Moments later Sociedad failed to make the most of a free-kick awarded after Vela was felled. Ruben Pardo sent his curling effort from the left wing straight at Oier as the visitors attempted to double their lead.
Down at the other end with just over 20 minutes to go, Allan Nyom was unfortunate not to level matters as Rulli managed to get his fingertips to the Cameroon defender's thunderous 25-yard strike.
The hosts had had a penalty appeal turned down at the start of the second half, but were finally awarded a spot-kick 11 minutes from time after Nyom was brought down by Pardo in the box. Rico powered the ball straight down the middle and past a diving Rulli to level matters - his second goal of the season.
The dominance began to shift as the match wore on and Granada could have stolen all three points late on, but the visitors held on for a draw and kept Moyes' side searching for their first away win in La Liga this term.