A few years ago, barely anyone could even contemplate a La Liga fixture between Espanyol and Eibar. Espanyol have been a team sitting comfortably in the top flight, whilst until recently Eibar, were scrapping around the lower divisions.
It has been an incredible journey for the club who play their home games at the ‘Iperua’ stadium, infront of just over 5000 fans. A team once squashed out of the picture by locals; Bilbao and Real Sociedad, they now sit above their city dwellers in a comfortable eighth position in the league standings.
If their was ever a game to show just how far the team has come, it was indeed the 1-2 away victory at the expense of Espanyol.
Like they have been all season they were quick out of the blocks. A flowing patient move on the left eventually found Manu del Moral who slotted away from inside the box. It got better too. Neat passing was matched with physicality, as a brave from the right-back Boveda, found striker Federico Piovaccari, who bundled in from close range. Espanyol equalised late on through Felipe Caicedo, although it was not enough as Eibar held on and were rewarded with the points, which in turn saw them move three points above their opposition.
If anything it goes to show what a positive team spirit can do for any side. Eibar have a fearless attitude in every game. Such low expectations mean every game is a chance to express themselves on the big stage, a factor that has contributed to their terrific form this season.
Some may argue that their success proves that outside the top four teams their is little quality in the division. It is true that teams at the standard of Espanyol are struggling for creativity when it comes to scoring more goals and improving, however, no one can doubt that for an innocent club like Eibar, storming into the top half of the table is quite an acheivement.
The next stop on their famous La Liga road trip comes at home to Getafe, a fixture you wouldn’t bet against them winning, should they maintain their will and determination, which as yet, has carried them so far.