Getafe hold Espanyol to scoreless draw in La Liga

Espanyol’s hopes of surging into Europa League contention suffered a setback on Saturday evening as they were held to a 0-0 draw at Getafe.

The Periquitos had the chance to move to the brink of the European qualification places with victory and if other results went their way, but finished the day still in mid-table and just six points above their hosts.

Javier Aguirre’s side headed to the Coliseum Alfonso Perez having won two of their previous three Primera Division matches, but could not find a way through the Getafe defense.

Espanyol’s Francisco Casilla was the busier of the two goalkeepers in the early stages, tipping an Angel Lafita curler around the post and getting his body in the way of Ciprian Marica’s close-range volley.

Rechel Sidnei fired wide in the 22nd minute in the visitors’ best opening of the first half, with Sergio Garcia then drilling a left-footed blast straight at Getafe goalkeeper Miguel Moya.

Chances continued to be few and far between in the second half, Jhon Cordoba lashing a long-range attempt wide for Espanyol just after the restart.

Angel Lafita could have broken the deadlock for Getafe seven minutes later but failed to get a proper connection on his header from Juan Rodriguez’s cross.

Getafe had to make a change between the posts just before the hour, Jordi Codina introduced in place of the injured Moya.

Pedro Leon tried his luck on a couple of occasions in the final 12 minutes, the first punched away by Casilla and the second off-target.

The visitors had one final glimmer of making the breakthrough deep in stoppage time, but Luis Pizzi’s drilled shot from 12 yards was comfortably caught by Codina.