Sports Mole brings you live commentary of tonight's La Liga encounter between Valencia and Athletic Bilbao at the Mestalla.
By Matt Law, European Football Editor Filed: Saturday, October 20, 2012 at 18:54 UK
Last Updated: Sunday, October 21, 2012 at 00:51 UK
Good evening and welcome to Sports Mole's live commentary of tonight's La Liga encounter between Valencia and Athletic Bilbao at the Mestalla.
Both sides have made disappointing starts to the league campaign and will be keen to get points on the board in their first match after the international break.
Valencia currently occupy 14th spot in the table with just eight points from their first seven matches, while Bilbao sit two places lower with the same total after seven games.
The home side have managed just two wins from their last five matches in all competitions, but Bilbao have just the one victory to their name in the same period.
The corresponding fixture ended 1-1 in October last season, but Valencia will enter the match full of confidence after securing a 3-0 win at Bilbao towards the end of the season.
Please note that kickoff is at 7pm.
8.50pmSo there we have it. A late Valdez header secures all the points for Valencia in a dramatic 3-2 win over 10-man Athletic Bilbao! Phew, be sure to stay with us for Deportivo vs. Barcelona in the next few moments. Until then!
86 minIt's chance after chance for the home side as Banega fires over the bar before Valdez heads over. Meanwhile, final change for Bilbao as Mikel San Jose replaces Inigo Perez.
84 minBilbao just cannot get out of their own half as Valencia continue to pass and probe, but the final ball is just not there. The supporters are letting their frustrations known.
82 minChance! Another fine chance for Valencia as Barragan fires a low cross into the box, but Valdez just cannot make contact.
80 minBanega has brought a nice balance to Valencia since his introduction, but Bilbao continue to stand strong in defence. It's all one-way traffic at the moment.
78 minMeanwhile, third and final change for Valencia as Ever Banega replaces Mathieu. Can he inspire his team to a point? Little over 10 remaining.
76 minChance! Another chance for the home side as Guardado strikes an effort from outside the box, but Iraizoz is there once more.
74 minValencia also make a change as Andres Guardado replaces Bernat - the latter was not happy with that decision. You just get the feeling that another goal is coming here.
73 minMeanwhile, another change for Bilbao as Aduriz is replaced by Jon Aurtenetxe. It is all happening at the moment as Soldado is bundled over in the penalty area.
71 minChance! This time it's Soldado who strikes from outside the box, but he fires wide of the target. What an opportunity.
71 minChance! Valdez comes close for Valencia once more as he meets a Gago corner, but his header is saved by Iraizoz. End-to-end football at the moment.
69 minSo, can Valencia make the most of their man advantage? It was a really stupid thing to do from Herrera. He may have cost his side the victory here.
67 minRed card! Ander Herrera is dismissed for Bilbao following an altercation with Rami. It appears to be for a late kick on Tino Costa.
66 minSo nearly a leveller for Valencia as Bernat dances into the Bilbao box, but Iraizoz just makes the save. It was bright play from the Valencia winger.
65 minMuniain does not continue and he is replaced by Ibai Gomez. Still no sign of Fernando Llorente.
63 minHalf-chance for Valencia as Gago finds Valdez in the penalty area, but his header is just over the crossbar. Meanwhile, Muniain appears to have a problem for Bilbao.
61 minAgain Bilbao threaten with a free kick from Muniain and a corner from Perez, but Soldado twice clears the danger. Meanwhile, first change of the match as Nelsen Valdez replaces Jonas.
58 minMeanwhile, a host of late challenges have broken up the play. It has become that type of match, which will frustrate the home side at 2-1 down.
56 minThe match has just become ever so sloppy in the past few moments with both sides exchanging possession in the middle of midfield. Just about 35 minutes of the match remaining.
54 minChance! So nearly a leveller for Valencia as Jonas whips a low cross into the penalty area, but Soldado just cannot make contact.
52 minAgain it's bright work from the away side as Muniain dances past the challenge of Ruiz, but his cross is plucked out the air by Guaita.
50 minValencia do not look comfortable defending corners in this match. Which is strange due to the amount of height in their side. Bilbao have clearly identified this area.
48 minBilbao have certainly started the half the better. The midfield three of Herrera, Susaeta and Perez look so lively. This is the Bilbao that we saw last season.
46 minValencia kick us off in the second period. The home side need their supporters to drive them through this match. I hope that they stay with them.
7.59pmHere we go then. The players are just joining us on the pitch ahead of the second 45 minutes. Let's hope for more goals.
7.56pmSo, what will the second period bring? You just get the feeling that the next goal could decide this one. If Valencia get it, I would fancy them to go on and win. But you just never know.
7.53pmAduriz came back to haunt his former club once more, however, as he struck his second of the match from close range after 30 minutes. Valencia have had chances to add to their tally, but Iraizoz has been in inspired form.
7.50pmIt was the away side that opened the scoring after 19 minutes when Aduriz bent an effort into the corner, but Valencia were level with a Soldado penalty seven minutes later.
7.47pmSo there we have it! A wonderful half draws to a close with Athletic Bilbao winning 2-1 at the interval. Did the half have to end?
45 minBig penalty claim for Valencia as Mathieu goes down in the box under the challenge of Iraola, but the referee waves play on. That looked like a penalty to me. Meanwhile, we will play one minute of added time.
42 minIt might have been three for Bilbao as they counter with pace and power, but Perez's effort is poor and straight at the goalkeeper. Meanwhile, Aduriz curls an effort wide of the target.
40 minValencia are enjoying possession as we approach the final five minutes of the half. Juan Bernat whips a dangerous ball into the box, but it is just too long for Soldado.
38 minValencia threaten as Soldado whips a dangerous cross into the box, but the impressive Iraizoz punches the ball clear of the danger zone.
36 minValencia just do not look comfortable in defence at the moment as Bilbao force corner after corner. However, poor delivery costs them the chance to extend their lead.
34 minBilbao flood forward once more as Susaeta picks up possession on the left, but his cross is just too long for Muniain. It really is so so open.
32 minWhat an opening 30 minutes we have had this evening! That's number eight of the season for Aduriz. I suspect it will not be the last of the goals tonight.
31 minOh my word! Bilbao lead once more as Aduriz converts from close range. It was poor defending from the home side.
17 minChance! Best chance of the match for the home side as Rami jumps highest in the box, but Iraizoz pushes his header clear.
16 minValencia have just started to take control of this match with possession in advanced areas. Soldado again comes close as he drives into the box, but the ball just runs out of play.
14 minHalf-chance for Valencia as Jonathan Viera finds space outside the box, but his attempted chip is gathered by Iraizoz. Meanwhile, the keeper is tested with a longe-range effort from Jonas.
12 minBilbao continue to play the better football as the half develops, with Ander Herrera and Inigo Perez enjoying plenty of the ball. However, Soldado's chance for Valencia remains the game's best opportunity.
10 minValencia have managed to stable their debt in the past few seasons, but the sales of key players have made it hard for them to compete. You just get the feeling that they have to secure European football this season.
8 minBilbao continue to look the most likely, however, as Susaeta whips a dangerous cross into the box, but Ruiz stoops to head clear.
6 minChance! Best opportunity of the match falls to Valencia as Soldado advances into the box, but his effort smashes off the post.
5 minReally nervy start from Valencia goalkeeper Vicente Guaita as he slips before firing possession straight out of play. Bilbao come close with the corner as Muniain meets a cross in the box, but his header is just wide.
3 minAll action start to the match as Valencia crowd Bilbao in midfield, but the Europa League finalists demonstrate a nice ability on the ball.
1 minHere we go then. Bilbao get us underway and immediately launch an attack down the right, but the danger is cleared.
6.59pmHandshakes? Check. Flags exchanged? Check. Let's get this show underway on a warm evening in Valencia.
6.57pmSo there we have it. Both sides name strong lineups for the vital clash between two teams in the bottom half of the table. My prediction for the match is a 1-1 draw. Let's see if I am correct.
6.55pmTeam News: Fernando Gago and Roberto Soldado start for Valencia. However, Bilbao name experienced striker Fernando Llorente on the bench once more.
6.55pmHello all! Two of the biggest names in Spanish football clash at the Mestalla this evening in what might expectedly been billed as a six-pointer in the race for Champions League football. However, it has not been the start that either side would have hoped for.