Squad news


20 Feb 2010
A Depor that’s willing to still fighting for Europe hosts a desperate Xérez that wants to hold on to Primera División. Lotina plans some changes in attack, while the Andalusians want to prove that they aren’t dead yet.

CD Xérez has only won two games on the present liga season: 2-1 Vs Villarreal (matchday 07) and 2-1 Vs RCD Mallorca (matchday 20). After 22 matchdays the Andalusians have only added 11 points, which is the worst mark at this moment of the campaign since the season 1997/98. At the time Sporting Gijón only had 3 points after the first 22 matches at Primera División.

Xérez is also presenting other negative marks, starting with the fact that they have only scored 12 goals, which is the lowest mark in la liga. Besides, together with Tenerife, they are the only side that hasn’t won yet any match playing away from home. But neither Depor can presume of good numbers at this point of the campaign, because the Galicians are living their worst moment with only one point added within the last three matches.

This is the first time in which both teams collide at the Riazor playing for Primera División, but in the past both sides already played six times in La Coruña for Segunda División. Depor won four of those meetings, while the other two were goalless games. Actually, Xérez has only scored once playing at the Riazor: 1-2 on the season 1989/90.

Depor is living a dark moment, with only one point added within the last three liga matches, dragging a drought of 185 minutes without scoring a goal, and actually only completing two shots on target in the last two liga encounters (both at RCD Espanyol); now coach Miguel Angel Lotina is planning to make some changes in the attacking line in order to add more power and score the goals that will lead to the victory.

The idea of the coach is to put an ‘offensive’ scheme with his best attackers on the pitch, starting with Andrés Guardado at the left wing, the ex-Atlas isn’t a starter since the liga game with Osasuna (January 10) but already played for a few minutes against Espanyol. Pablo Alvarez is also returning from suspension to claim the spot at the right wing, these two comebacks were already confirmed by the coach, while the doubt is who will be the playmaker and the central attacker.

Adrián and Rodolfo Bodipo are the main choices for the striker’s role, but Riki has a chance too, the Madrilenian isn’t a starter since he got injured in the Copa clash at Valencia FC (January 6). However, Riki is doubtful after the ex-Getafe didn’t complete Friday’s training due to gastroenteritis, but doctors expect he will be fine for the game. Just in case Lotina picked David Añon from Deportivo B, this since Mista wasn’t picked although he is already recovered from his groin injury. The other question is who will be the playmaker in the formation, Lotina praised the job done by Juan Dominguez against Espanyol and the Galician might take the spot, but veteran Juan Carlos Valerón also has a chance.

Lotina also has a doubt at the goalkeeping position, and it’s that Daniel Aranzubia isn’t totally recovered from his shoulder problem though he entered into the list for the game. As a precaution measure the Basque manager called Fabril’s Marcos Valín as a third keeper, but Manu, who should be the one taking the spot in case of emergency, said to reporters that there’s no problem with Aranzubia, ”I am calmed, he has enough time to get recovered and in the end he will play, everything is under control.”

The defensive line seems to be the same one that played at the Cornellá-El Prat stadium, with Manuel Pablo performing at the right-back position, Laure on the left, while the centre backs will be Albert Lopo and Diego Colotto. Brazilian Juca will be at midfield and his partner will be Juan Rodriguez, who is replacing Antonio Tomás. The Cantabrian is suspended and will miss his first game after seventeen straight appearances at the starting eleven.

In the end Depor’s manager has picked twenty players for the game, which includes four members of Fabril: Marcos Valín, Juan Dominguez, David Añon and Raúl Garcia, this last one is a left-back defender taking the place of Diego Seoane, who was with Spain’s U-21 squad at the start of the week. The discards for technical reasons are Mista and Adrián López ‘Piscu’, while the players still at the injury room are Angulo, Lassad, Sergio and Filipe Luis.

Captain Manuel Pablo talked before the game; he said that Depor must win the match, ”At home you are always forced to win against any rival. Now we have a tough game because Xérez plays good football, they even propose an offensive game, and we must go out in order to avoid a surprise and claim the three points. You can notice that Xérez is a new comer, they are paying an expensive price for their errors and that’s why they are living this situation.”

Meanwhile, youngster Juan Dominguez was saying that Depor must demonstrate things in this game, "We want to demonstrate that we aren't there for an accident. We want to win the game as any other one. We need to win in order to raise our confidence and our position at the standings."

Fabril’s Raúl Garcia was expressing his feelings after been picked for the game, “I am a little nervous, but this is my second call to the first team and am very content, it is another memory for the record. I still don’t know if it’s real, because it’s the dream of all the players. To play at home is always pretty, I am from A Coruña and always watched Depor at the Riazor. Besides, my family will be watching. If I’m able to play, I will try to do a nice job.”

Finally, Juca wants to change the impression left by the team in recent games, ”We come from a series of bad results and now we have the opportunity to reverse it in front of our fans. There is pressure, but mainly coming from ourselves, we must recognize that we are not living a good moment, also that we must return to play well and win. It will be a difficult game; they are in a very critical situation but want to win. We don’t have a team of stars but of workers, when we're OK, we are all together, and the same happens when we are wrong. Tomorrow we will put everything to improve, "

List of picked players (20): Aranzubia, Manu, Marcos Valín (goalkeepers); Manuel Pablo, Colotto, Lopo, Laure, Zé Castro, Raúl (defenders); Juca, Juan Rodríguez, Pablo Álvarez, Juan Domínguez, Andrés Guardado, Iván Pérez, Valerón, Añón (midfielders); Riki, Adrián and Bodipo (strikers).

Big part of the journalism already sees Xérez CD returning to Segunda after just one season at Primera División, the Andalusians are currently ten points behind the safety, but are showing some signs of reaction, especially since the arrival of Argentine coach Néstor Raúl Gorosito. And it’s that since his arrival four matchdays ago, the Andalusian team has added four points (36% of their total on the season) and, specially, has scored six goals, which is the half of the total number on the whole liga campaign.

Beyond that, the performance has been more regular and the rivals have faced bigger difficulties against them.  Osasuna suffered a lot to pick up the points at the Chapín stadium (1-2 matchday 19), later Xérez clinched its second win liga defeating RCD Mallorca (2-1, matchday 20), then the Andalusians were close to achieve their first win away from home, but couldn’t hold the 2-1 over Athletic Bilbao and ended losing by 2-3 (matchday 21), and in the last matchday they lost 0-3 against Real Madrid, but giving a positive impression and holding the initial 0-0 until half-time.

Their chances of salvation are minimal, but still exist, reason why Gorosito is trying to transmit a message of positivism to the players. For the match at the Riazor the Argentine coach is losing defensive midfielder Alex Bergantiños (20 games on the season, 1,595 minutes) and central defender Aythami Artiles (18 games, 1,575 minutes), duo that belongs to Deportivo and that’s inegible to play.

Meanwhile, captain Jesús Mendoza and new signing Nicolás Vigneri weren’t picked for technical reasons. The idea of the coach is to keep that same formation that gave a positive impression against Real Madrid, but Gorosito will make two changes in defence. The first one is the entry of Francisco Jesús Pérez ‘Francis’ taking the place of Juan Luis Redondo at the right-back position. Francis was out during the last weeks due to a muscular problem.

The other change is occurring at the centre of the defence, the casualty of Aythami will be covered with ex-Sevilla David Prieto, who is going directly into the starting eleven after been out for a month due to an ankle sprain.  His partner will be Argentine Leandro Andrés Gioda, while José Manuel Casado will be covering the left side. The defensive line is completed with Brazilian Renan Brito playing at the goal.

At midfield, the duo Vicente Moreno- Sidi Keita will cover the pivote functions; ex-Alcoyano Carlos Calvo Sobrado will be attacking by the right flank, while former Depor’s player Jerónimo Figueroa ‘Momo’ will do the same on the left, loaned player from Barcelona Víctor Sánchez Mata will be the playmaker and the lonely attacker will be Mario Bermejo Castanedo, the ex-Almeria is the Pichichi at the team with four goals scored in liga.

Francis talked to reporters before the game, he was emphasising the fact that his team has been playing good football in recent matches, “We haven’t played badly, we are just paying the price for our lack of experience since this is our first year at Primera, and also to remember that a lot of players are performing for the first time on the division. We should have more points at this moment of the season. Now we must continue until the end. It is complicated, but until there are points in dispute, we will keep fighting.” 
The ex-Écija player was also hoping to add the points at the Riazor, “It won’t be easy, but we have to go there for the three points. Deportivo is a very serious and well organized team. They have very good players, despite not living a good moment, but every team has their bad moments in the league. It is a team that, despite this, can defeat you anytime. We have to focus on ourselves, to press very well and play as the coach wants.”

Finally, ex-Depor Emilio Viqueira, who will be on the bench, was commenting the situation of his current club, “The situation is complicated, but the good thing is that we know how to face every matchday as it was it a final. Within the last three games we have played at a better level. We were close to win in Bilbao, then we won against Mallorca and put things difficult to (Real) Madrid. We should have more points.”

List of picked players (18): Renan, Chema (goalkeepers); Moreno, Leandro, Francis, David Prieto, Casado, Redondo (defenders); Abel, Keita, Viqueira, Momo, Carlos Calvo, Víctor Sánchez (midfielders); Bermejo, Alustiza, Michel and Antoñito (strikers).

Deporitvo: Aranzubia – Manuel Pablo, Colotto, Lopo, Laure – Juca, Juan Rodríguez – Pablo Alvarez, Valerón or Juan Domínguez, Guardado – Riki or Adrián.
Xérez: Renan - Francis, Leandro, Prieto, Casado - Moreno, Keita - Carlos Calvo, Victor Sánchez, Momo - Bermejo.
Referee: Miguel Angel Pérez Lasa (7 games on the season, 3 wins for the local team).
Kick-off: 18h00 CET (Riazor)
Head-to-head Vs. Xérez: 6 wins for Depor, 3 draws, 3 wins for Xérez (Primera & Segunda)
Record at the Riazor: 4 wins for Depor, 2 draws, 0 wins for Xérez (Segunda)



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