Competition news

PREVIEW: OSASUNA - DEPORTIVO (LA LIGA)

25 Feb 2006
Osasuna receives Deportivo tonight in the relative safety of the fourth spot, the last one that sends a team to the Champions League. But for Deportivo this might be the last train for the prestigious competition. A loss would leave them 12 points away with 12 matchdays left, an impossible distance.

COLO IS OUT, MUNITIS DOUBTFUL
Munitis trained separate from the group on Thursday after the light injury he picked up against Zaragoza and his physical situation before the match against Osasuna is not yet known. If he will totally recover, he might enter although Caparros is known to avoid playing recently injured players.

Colo on the other hand is certainly out, the Argentinean midfielder has been suspended for two matches after the red card he received against Zaragoza. Juanma will again partner Andrade under these circumstances, in a defensive line also composed of Manuel Pablo and Capdevila.

TRISTAN WILL START ON THE BENCH
The Sevillan striker seems to have lost the trust of Caparros and will again start the match on the bench. His place will be covered by Arizmendi. The young striker hasn't impressed in the last matches, but Caparros wants to give him more continuity nevertheless. Ruben is the likely partner of Arizmendi in the offensive line of Deportivo, although Munitis could also play on this position if he is fit.

Meanwhile the wings will be covered by Romero and Victor. Gallardo is still not the preferred option, although he had an impressive second half against Zaragoza. Still, the new winger will await his chance on the bench. The central midfield is completed by Sergio and Duscher, one of them having also to help in the attacking phase.

SUSPENSION TROUBLE FOR OSASUNA
Marcelo Sosa and Javier Fla?±o are certain to miss the match against Deportivo, through a recurrent injury and suspension respectively. But coach Javier Aguirre has more troubles on his mind, namely he could lose no less than seven players to accumulation of yellow cards. This list includes essential players like both his defensive midfielders.

The one good news in Osasuna's camp is that Camerun striker Pierre Achille Web?? has finally recovered after an injury he picked up during the African Cup of Nations.

THE STATISTICS FAVOR DEPORTIVO
Osasuna have been known as a tough team to beat at home, but their latest record seems to infirm this. They haven't won at their stadium since the 22nd of December, when they beat Atletico Madrid. In the last three home matches, they have only recorded two draws and a loss, a crisis similar to the one Deportivo is going through.

Deportivo on the other hand have only lost of the last six away matches, winning the other five. Depor has also scored more goals in away matches and can therefore be considered much more dangerous in away games. Still, the latest matches of the Galicians have been less than encouraging, especially concerning the scoring ability of Caparros' men.

PROBABLE LINEUPS:
Osasuna:  Ricardo; Izquierdo, Cuellar, Josetxo, Clavero; Pu?±al, Ra??l Garc?­a, David Lopez, Delporte; Milosevic and Romeo.
Deportivo:   Molina; Manuel Pablo, Andrade, Juanma, Capdevila; Sergio, Duscher, Victor, Romero; Arizmendi and Rub?©n.
Referee: Ram?­rez Dom?­nguez.
Venue: Reyno de Navarra.


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