Valencia CF start the season with an important win against UD Las Palmas (1-0) August, 18 2017 - Zaza scored in the first half of a game which was full of emotions and excitement Valencia CF kicked off the 2017/18 LaLiga season with a deserved 1-0 win against UD Las Palmas after Zaza’s first-half goal proved enough to take the three points. It was Marcelino García Toral’s first league game in charge of the side, and Neto, Nacho Vidal, Nacho Gil and Maksimovic all made their league debuts for VCF. The opening minutes of the game were a little scrappy, with both sides trying to feel their way into it and get a hold of possession. The Blanquinegros started to settle in quicker, however, with the backing of the Mestalla support pushing them forward and applauding every incursion into the opposition half. Zaza was very involved up front, trying to drag the UD Las Palmas centre-backs out of position and leave spaces for Rodrigo and the midfielders arriving from deep. In what was a bit of a chess match, both teams were looking to win the tactical battle, but increasingly it was the Blanquinegros who were taking more risks in order to create chances. Nacho Vidal and Rodrigo both had efforts saved by the goalkeeper before the goal arrived. After brilliant play from Carlos Soler, Zaza received the ball and calmly rolled it into the bottom left corner. It was an impossible finish for Chichizola to reach, and Mestalla exploded with joy. From then on, Valencia CF were in complete control of possession. Just after the half hour mark Halilovic went in on Gayà with a dangerous foul, and the referee reached straight for his red card; the opposition could have few complaints. Rodrigo and Zaza came close to adding a second, but the half ended with VCF leading 1-0. In the second half Valencia CF continued to press high, looking to win possession in dangerous areas and take advantage of their numerical advantage. Around the 60 minute mark Zaza found Cancelo with a great ball, and the Portuguese player had two efforts saved. The crowd were on their feet and it felt as if it was only a matter of time before the Blanquinegros would find the second goal and put the game to bed. On the 72nd minute Nacho Gil came on to make his debut, replacing Medrán who had worked tirelessly in midfield. Cancelo kept on attacking down the wing, creating all sorts of problems for the away side. Santi Mina saw his powerful header smack off the right post in the final minutes. As the referee blew for full-time, Mestalla stood to applaud the huge effort put in by the team, and celebrated a 1-0 win which they very much deserved. Marcelino’s side get the season off the start they wanted, with three points and a clean sheet. Match Details: 1. Valencia CF: Neto, Nacho Vidal, Garay, Vezo, Gayà, Parejo, Medrán (Nacho Gil, m. 72), Carlos Soler (Maksimovic, m. 88), Joao Cancelo, Rodrigo (Santi Mina, m. 79) and Zaza. 0. UD Las Palmas: Chichizola, Simón (Michel Macedo, m. 84), Lemos (Castellano, m. 78), Ximo Navarro, Castellano, Bigas, Tana (Araujo, m. 78), Halilovic, Vitolo, Viera and Calleri. Goals: 1-0. M. 22: Zaza. Referee: Gil Manzano booked Zaza, Parejo and Gayà for Valencia CF, and Ximo Navarro, Bigas and Simon for UD Las Palmas. He sent off Halilovic on the 33rd minute for a dangerous foul on Gayà. Observations: Matchday 1 of the 2017/18 season played on Friday, 18th of August at 10:15pm at Mestalla in front 35,971 fans. A minute’s silence was held for the victims of the terrorist attacks in Catalonia. Copyright 2013-2017 Valencia Club De Fútbol. Quoting text from this article is permitted provided that en.valenciacf.com is credited as source, with a clickable link. Photographs by Lázaro de la Peña, re-use is not permitted.