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Aguirre proud of battling point

Espanyol coach Javier Aguirre praised his players’ determination after they managed to record a 2-2 draw away to champions Real Madrid.

Struggling Espanyol are without a victory in their last six league matches, but have at least drawn three games in succession to show signs of some much-needed improvement.

They led early in the match at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on Sunday, but trailed 2-1 before Juan Albin’s 88th-minute strike earned the visitors a share of the spoils.

“I do not know what to make of the result because we took the lead but for almost the whole game we had to take risks,” Aguirre said.

“Justice in football is difficult to assess and in that sense I am happy for the boys because the players ran and worked hard. They fought, they had chances, and scored two goals so I am pleased their efforts were rewarded.”

Espanyol remain second bottom on the league table, but are just one point away from a safety in the congested Liga standings.

With draws against Granada, Sevilla and now Real under their belt, Aguirre is confident his team are finally moving in the right direction.

“The truth is that this is a step in the right direction,” he said.

“Obviously we weren’t able to win, but we aren’t bottom of the league.

“The evaluation of our season comes in May when we will review and the board and fans will say if I met the targets.

“That’s the only time we will make any assessment. All we’ve done in the last fortnight is to agree on how to bring balance to the game, like how to attack and defend, in the three games we have scored four goals, which is much better.

“The self-esteem of the players with these last three results has been strengthened and the team is improving in this regard.

“That reassures me, because it tells me that I’m working through the points and this is just beginning, now comes the hard part of improving our position. We are playing better but we can still do more.”

Mon 17 December, 2012
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