Evening all! Our penultimate live La Liga commentary of the evening comes from the Mestalla as Valencia
. It hasn’t quite been the start to the season that Valencia would have wanted, with a total of 17 points from their 14 matches leaving them in 11th spot. However, they are just six points off the top six.
Osasuna, meanwhile, have managed to move out of the relegation zone with six points from their last four matches. They picked up a morale-boosting 1-0 win over Real Valladolid last time out, but have struggled to score goals this season, with just five in their last five matches. That said, they have won twice on the road thus far.
In terms of the recent meetings between the two sides, it does not make good reading for Osasuna. Valencia have won each of the last five matches, scoring 13 times in the process and conceding just once. As mentioned, the corresponding match in this stadium last season ended in a 4-0 home win.
VALENCIA: Alves; Barragan, V. Ruiz, Mathieu, Guardado; Romeu, Parejo; Feghouli, Canales, Bernat; Jonas
OSASUNA: Fernandez; Bertran, Loties, Arribas, Damia; Cejudo, Lolo, Punal, Armenteros, De las Cuevas; Riera
So there we have it. Interesting team selection for Valencia with Sergio Canales, Juan Bernat and Jonas all expected to operate in attacking positions. Osasuna, meanwhile, have Oriol Riera as their lone striker in a defensive lineup. Right, the away side get the action underway at the Mestalla.
CHANCE! Opportunity inside two minutes for the home side as Arribas's poor clearance falls straight to Feghouli, but his effort is high and wide of the crossbar. You just get the feeling that Valencia need a strong start this evening. Their supporters will demand it there is no question about that.
Valencia's bright start continues as Bernat curls a deep cross towards Jonas, but Fernandez is on hand to claim at the vital moment. Osasuna attempt to break down the other end with De las Cuevas, but the Spaniard never had the legs to run away from Ruiz.
Controlled and confident opening six minutes from the home side with Canales and Jonas seeing plenty of the ball. However, Osasuna's threat on the counter is there for all to see. Barragan attempts to curve a pass towards Jonas moments later, but Damia is across to shepherd it back to his own goalkeeper. Still goalless with six minutes on the clock.
Just a reminder that Valencia enter this match off the back of a 2-1 defeat to Elche last time out and will therefore be keen to return to winning ways this evening. Wonderful atmosphere inside the stadium, although it is not a full house. An early goal would certainly settle some nerves in the Mestalla.
CHANCE! Wonderful chance for Osasuna as Guardado fells De las Cuevas outside the Valencia box and receives a yellow card for his troubles. The resulting set piece is taken by Riera, but Arribas can only plant his header wide of the post. Both sides have had golden chances in the opening 11 minutes.
The referee continues to become involved as he books Damia for a challenge on Feghouli. Initial contact was made, but the booking is for a swipe in the face. The resulting set piece is taken by Canales, but his free kick is straight into the arms of Fernandez. Plenty happening at the Mestalla, but still goalless.
Just a reminder that the likes of Pabon, Banega and Postiga are all on the bench for the home side this evening, which does seem incredible. Although all three have struggled to produce thus far this season. Slightly untidy period of the match in the last couple of moments as the challenges continue to arrive from both sides.
Another half-chance for the home side as Parejo finds Canales inside the Osasuna box, but the Spaniard just loses control at the vital moment. Osasuna break down the other end with De las Cuevas moments later, but his effort is high and wide of the crossbar. Still goalless in this La Liga contest.
RED CARD! (Punal - Osasuna)
Osasuna are reduced to 10 men here as Punal dives into a challenge with Parejo and gets nowhere near the ball. In truth, it was a really poor challenge from the Spaniard. Luckily for Parejo, he does not seem to be too hurt.
Well, it is hard enough in the Mestalla, but Osasuna will have to play the rest of this match with 10 men. That certainly changes the balance of this contest. Half-chance for Valencia moments later as Jonas meets a cross from Barragan, but his header never had enough power to trouble Fernandez.
Interestingly, Osasuna have not made a change despite going down to 10 men. They have hardly had a touch of the ball since that moment as Valencia continue to dominate possession in the middle of the park. However, chances have been few and far between in the opening 22 minutes of action. Still goalless in the Mestalla.
Safe to say that Osasuna are not best pleased with the referee at the moment. However, Punal only has himself to blame for that crazy challenge on Parejo. The Valencia midfielder has another opportunity to open the scoring moments later, but his low effort is pushed wide of the post by Fernandez. The pressure is just starting to build with 24 minutes on the clock.
Half-chance for Osasuna this time as Cejudo finds some space down the left before delivering a wicked cross towards Riera, but the forward just cannot make contact at the far post. Wonderful atmosphere inside the stadium as the home supporters continue to raise the tempo, but their side has not really forced the issue since Osasuna went down to 10 men.
CHANCE! Valencia come close to taking the lead as Romeu drives into the Osasuna box before finding Jonas, but his effort is blocked by Fernandez. In fairness to Osasuna, they have not retreated into their shell as they continue to force the issue. However, you worry about their compactness in defence.
Good pressure from Valencia in the last couple of moments as they continue to force the issue in wide areas. Guardado and Jonas have both had efforts in the last couple of moments, but neither really threatened to open the scoring. Osasuna, meanwhile, are really struggling to keep the ball as the first period gathers pace at the Mestalla.
The odd whistle can be heard around the stadium at the moment as another Valencia attack breaks down. It is important that the home side keep their supporters onside this evening. Two corners in quick succession threaten Osasuna, but Loties and Lolo take it in turns to clear the danger with 33 minutes on the clock.
CROSSBAR! Valencia's clearest chance of the match arrives after 35 minutes as Canales's effort takes a wicked deflection off Lolo, but it smashes against the crossbar, before Fernandez clears the danger. Little over 10 minutes of the first period remaining at the Mestalla.
It just isn't happening for the home side at the moment as attack after attack breaks down in the final third. That said, Osasuna have hardly threatened since they were reduced to 10 men. Ruiz takes matters into his own hands moments later as he drives forward from defence, but Jonas's cross into the box comes to nothing.
Canales is involved for Valencia once more as he slides a low pass towards Jonas, but Lolo is across to clear at the vital moment. It is almost like a training exercise for Valencia at the moment as they pass and probe outside the Osasuna box. Banega drives into the box in the next attack, but Cejudo clears.
Not too many Osasuna supporters have made the trip for this match, but those in attendance can be proud of their side thus far. In truth, all their plans had to be changed when Punal was dismissed for a poor challenge in the early stages. Since then Valencia have dominated possession, but clear chances have been at a premium.
Another half-chance for Valencia as Feghouli meets a through pass from Jonas, but his scooped effort is high and wide of the crossbar. Fernandez is called into action moments later as he clears under pressure from Jonas. Little over one minute of the first period remaining at the Mestalla.
GOAL! Valencia 1-0 Osasuna (Jonas)
Valencia take the lead in first-half stoppage time as Jonas converts a Barragan cross from close range. It is harsh on Osasuna, who have defended impressively in the first period.
HALF TIME: Valencia 1-0 Osasuna
So there we have it. The referee brings the first period to an end with Valencia leading 1-0. Osasuna started brightly, but have struggled since being reduced to 10 men when Punal fouled Parejo in the middle of the park. The goal came in first-half stoppage time when Jonas converted from close range. It is so delicately poised ahead of the second period.
STATISTICS: Valencia have utterly dominated the possession with 75%, while they have had 11 attempts to Osasuna's three. The home side have also hit the target on four occasions, but the away side are yet to test Alves in the Valencia goal. In truth, Valencia deserve to be leading at this stage of proceedings.
BENCH WATCH: The home side have a number of attacking options on their bench in the shape of Pabon, Postiga and Banega. Meanwhile, Osasuna have the likes of Roberto Torres, Manuel and Silva in reserve. It would not be a surprise to see changes at the interval.
Here we go then. Both sets of players join us on the pitch for the second period. Just a reminder that following this match we have action from San Mames as Athletic Bilbao welcome Barcelona in arguably the game of the weekend. Right, the home side get the second period underway at the Mestalla. Let's hope for goals.
No changes for either side at the interval, but I expect that will change if the score remains the same around the hour mark. An early goal for the home side would certainly settle some of the nerves inside the stadium. Osasuna, meanwhile, just need a little bit more from Riera in the final third. For me, another Valencia goal and this one is over.
Half-chance for the home side as Jonas strikes one from the edge of the box, but Fernandez is across to make a fine save. The pressure continues as Guardado drives down the left before finding Romeu, but his low pass is just cut out by Lolo.
GOAL! Valencia 2-0 Osasuna (Jonas)
Valencia score their second in the early stages of the second period as Jonas volleys Feghouli's cross into the back of the net. Stunning from the Brazilian forward.
Valencia needed a big performance from Jonas this evening and the forward has answered the call. This could get a lot worse for Osasuna before it gets better as the home side continue to force the issue. In truth, this could be anything in the second period. There is real belief in the home side as they continue to flood forward.
Valencia's purple patch continues as Feghouli drives down the right before finding Canales, but his shot is blocked by Lolo. Osasuna make their first change of the match moments later as Silva replaces Cejudo, which is not much of a surprise. It is going to take a miracle for Osasuna to turn this one around.
GOAL! Valencia 3-0 Osasuna (Jonas)
Jonas completes his treble in the Mestalla as he curls a wonderful effort into the top corner from just inside the box. It is Jonas's night in Valencia.
Jonas has not played for Brazil for some time, but more performances like this and he could force his way into the thinking for the World Cup. As a contest, this match is over. It is all about damage limitation for Osasuna. Valencia, however, will not be in a charitable mood as they attempt to continue their strong run of form.
Valencia make their first change of the match as Banega, who was surprisingly left on the bench, replaces Canales, who has had another fine evening. Little over 30 minutes of football remaining and Valencia lead 3-0. Not too much in terms of chances in the last couple of moments, however, as the home side continue to keep the ball.
CHANCE! Wonderful chance for Jonas to score his fourth as Guardado finds the Brazilian inside the box, but Fernandez is on hand to make a fine save from the forward's header. What on earth is happening in that Osasuna defence?
Valencia want a penalty as Lolo appears to handle inside the box, but the referee is not interested. I have certainly seen them given. The resulting corner causes problems inside the Osasuna area, but Fernandez manages to clear under pressure from Jonas. Little under 30 minutes of football remaining at the Mestalla.
Osasuna make their second change of the match as Roberto Torres replaces De las Cuevas for the final 25 minutes or so. This is damage limitation for the away side in the remainder of this match. Valencia are so comfortable at the moment as they continue to keep possession in the opposing half.
Another half-chance for the home side as Romeu finds Jonas just inside the box, but his effort is blocked by Lolo. Strong atmosphere inside the stadium at the moment, but you get the feeling that the home supporters want their side to score a couple more goals. Little over 20 minutes of football remaining.
Valencia make their second change of the match as hat-trick hero Jonas is replaced by Postiga. It has been the perfect evening for the Brazilian forward. Not too much to report in terms of chances in the last couple of moments as Valencia continue to keep possession in the Osasuna half.
Osasuna want a penalty as Guardado appears to handle inside his own box, but the referee is not interested. Valencia are on the counter moments later with Postiga, but the Portuguese international loses his footing on the edge of the box and the danger is cleared. Little under 20 minutes of football remaining.
Osasuna make their third and final change of the evening as Oier replaces Lolo, who cannot continue due to an injury. In truth, not too much is happening at the moment as Valencia keep hold of the ball in their own half. Osasuna will be happy with a three-goal loss at this stage. Just a reminder that following this match we have live text coverage of Athletic Bilbao against Barcelona.
Valencia make their third and final change moments later as exciting youngster Fede replaces Guardado, who has had an impressive evening in Valencia. Postiga has a half-chance moments later as he collects a pass from Banega inside the box, but the striker had just moved into an offside position.
Another half-chance for the home side as Barragan collects a wonderful pass from Romeu before chipping one towards goal, but his effort just drops the wrong side of the post. It would not have counted, however, with the linesman raising his flag. Little over 10 minutes of football remaining in the Mestalla.
Bright work from Fede as the youngster drives past two defenders before striking one towards goal, but his effort was always moving high and wide of the crossbar. Feghouli has a similar shooting chance moments later, but he also finds the stands. Still 3-0 Valencia after 82 minutes.
CHANCE! Wonderful chance for Valencia as Banega finds Bernat down the left, but his low effort just moves wide of the post. It has been a really impressive night for Valencia. However, Osasuna have been desperately poor.
Good possession from Osasuna in the last couple of moments, but still they cannot register an attempt on target. Valencia threaten on the counter moments later with Banega, but the Argentine cannot find the run of Postiga inside the box. Little under five minutes of football remaining at the Mestalla.
I shouldn't think that there will be too much added time at the end of the match. There has hardly been a stoppage of note in the second 45 minutes. Osasuna have another half-chance from a free kick outside the box, but Armenteros's delivery is cleared by Alves.
The fourth official indicates that we will play an additional four minutes, although I am not sure where those have come from. Not too much to report as Valencia continue to enjoy possession in the Osasuna half. Another goal is not out of the question if the home side move up a gear.
It's brilliant from Banega as the Argentine combines with Postiga before floating a wonderful cross into the box, but Fernandez is on hand to collect. Romeu finds some space outside the area moments later, but his effort is blocked. That should be just about that for this one.
FULL TIME: Valencia 3-0 Osasuna
So there we have it. The referee brings the match to an end with Valencia winning 3-0. Thanks for joining Sports Mole for the action and be sure to remain with us for Bilbao against Barcelona. Until then!