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Espanyol Clinch La Liga Return with Playoff Win

Espanyol Clinch La Liga Return with Playoff Winillustration

Espanyol secured promotion to La Liga for the -25 season with a decisive 2-0 over in the second leg of the promotion play-off final on Sunday. The match, held at the Stage Front Stadium, saw Javi Puado score both goals just before halftime, leading his childhood club to a 2-1 aggregate win.

Espanyol, finishing fourth in the regular season, quickly bounced back to La Liga following their relegation the previous season. This achievement marks the second time the Barcelona-based club has achieved promotion immediately after relegation, last achieving this feat in 2020. Prior to 2020, their previous relegation occurred in 1994.

Puado's first goal came in the 44th minute when he evaded his marker and slotted in a right-footed shot from a corner, leveling the aggregate score. Just three minutes later, the 26-year-old forward capitalized on Pere Milla's assist to extend Espanyol's lead with a composed finish inside the box.

Real Oviedo, who had won the first leg 1-0 at home through Alemao's 73rd-minute strike, failed to capitalize on their advantage in the return leg, thereby extending their absence from La Liga since the 2000-01 season.

Espanyol's return to the top-flight signifies a significant achievement for the club, reaffirming their competitive strength following a challenging season.

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