Málaga are enduring a woeful campaign in Primera División this season and look certain to be relegated in May for the first time since 2005-06. Since gaining promotion back to the top flight two seasons later Málaga have been a fixture in Primera and finished fourth in 2011-12, reaching the quarter-finals of the Champions League the following year and only missing out on the semi-finals in a dramatic stoppage time reverse against Borussia Dortmund.
But 2017-18 has been a season to forget for the Anchovies, who won just three games all season and have one of the lowest points totals at this stage of the season in Liga history. In 1994-95 Logroñés had just 10 points after 27 games but that was the final season in Spain when a win reaped two points. In 1997-98 Sporting set the record for the worst season in top flight history when they finished with 13 points, the same total Málaga have now. At this stage, Sporting had picked up only seven. In 2016-17 Osasuna had picked up only 11 points after 27 games and ended the season with 22, enough to avoid being placed last as Granada managed only 20.
Málaga’s return this season is considerably worse than in 2005-06, when Manolo Hierro’s side sank into Segunda: after 27 games in that campaign Málaga had 22 points.
Since sacking Míchel in January and installing José Manuel González, Málaga have picked up only two points, spread over the new coach’s first two games, and are now on a run of six consecutive defeats. Neither does the side’s run-in inspire much optimism, with Real Madrid, Barcelona, Villarreal, Celta, Real Sociedad and Betis all to come, starting with the visit of the champions elect on Saturday.
Benevento the only team worse off than Málaga in Europe
Across Europe, Málaga’s record doesn’t make their season appear any better. Only Benevento, who were in Serie C as recently as 2015-16, have picked up fewer points with 10 after 26 games. The rest of the bottom-placed sides in the “big five” European leagues are West Bromwich Albion (20 points), Cologne (17) and Metz (20).