Squad news


17 Oct 2010
Important game for two teams that want to avoid the relegation zone; Depor is arriving to the match encouraged by the support of the fans, but at the same time suffering several casualties, while Osasuna is missing Pandiani.

Deportivo is living its worst start in decades; the Galicians represent the last place in liga and what was their landmark in past seasons is now gone: the solidity at defence. And it’s that the six goals leaked against Real Madrid are leaving Depor as the second worst defensive line in last liga, with eleven goals allowed, just above Malaga (12). But there’s a common thing between the two sides colliding at the Riazor: their lack of goals.

Depor is currently the worst scorer in la liga with only three goals, while Osasuna is third in the list with only four. The Galicians are also the worst scoring team in 2010 with only 19 goals in 29 liga encounters, but the Navarrans aren’t too far from the mark as they have only scored 27 goals in the same period. Enough reason to explain why these two sides are currently fighting for the permanence. And it’s that Osasuna is just two points above Depor, which means that a win for Lotina’s side will put them over their rivals.

Historically, the Riazor has been a tough visit for Osasuna, as the Navarrans have just added five draws and three wins after twenty-eight visits, but it should be emphasized that the three wins of Osasuna in La Coruña have occurred within the last six seasons: 3-1 (2004/05); 1-0 (2005/06) and 2-1 (2007/08). To mention that Osasuna arrives to the Riazor dragging a negative mark of eleven straight liga defeats playing away from Pamplona; their last away win occurred on January 31st as they defeated Villarreal at El Madrigal (2-0).

It was a positive and at the same time negative week for Deportivo, positive because the players felt the support and the love from the fans although the team is the last place at Primera División, something that seems to be encouraging them to change the course in this poor start in la liga. Even the players had a meeting behind closed doors in order to search for a reaction.

But it was also a negative week, because Lotina lost another three players ahead of the clash with Osasuna: Guardado (hamstring strain), Juca (muscular) and Urreta (passport problems). The trio is joining other three players that currently are at the injury room: Riki, Valerón and Michel. At least the coach is recovering Daniel Aranzubia (shoulder), Juan Dominguez and Pablo Alvarez (both thigh), trio that was picked for the game.

Continuing with the police of “Union & Commitment” copied from the Riazor Blues, Lotina has decided to pick twenty players for the game and concentrate all them in the hotel since Saturday’s night; the only ones left aside were the injured men and Aythami Artiles. At the same time the Basque manager is trying to keep the tension as he didn’t give too many clues of the lineup.

He just confirmed that Aranzubia, Adrian and Colotto will be starters; several changes are expected –actually Lotina announced it during the press conference- but the major part of them are more related to the problems with the injuries rather than been a ‘revolution’ after the poor results in past games.

The main novelty is to see Daniel Aranzubia at the goal, the Basque is returning after missing the first six games due to a shoulder problem. At defence Manuel Pablo will probably be the right-back defender, and the doubts are: who will join Colotto at the centre and who will play on the left. Lopo, untouchable until now, is on doubt after his terrible game at the Bernabéu, which could open a gap for Ze Castro. Meanwhile Claudio Morel and Diego Seoane are disputing the spot at the left, the Paraguayan made a long trip to Oceania with his national team, but he is fresh enough to play the game.

At midfield, Ruben Pérez has a secure place in the lineup, and his partner at the centre of the pitch will be Juan Rodriguez or Antonio Tomas. Lassad Nouioui arrived until Thursday from international duty, but it’s expected that he will be the playmaker in the formation. Some journalists are expecting to see Juan Dominguez on this function, but it isn’t probable as the Galician player is just coming out of his injury.

With Guardado and Urreta out of the match, the responsibility to create game on the wings will be for Yves Desmarets and Saul Fernandez. Finally Adrian will be the central striker; the Asturian still scoreless on this season, but is coming after scoring twice with the U-21 squad of Spain, which could motivate him for this clash.

Saúl was analyzing the rival before the match, “It is a rival that will be fighting at our side and we know the importance of the three points. We are motivated, willing to change the face of the team and forget the past matches. The visit of the fans during the week it’s helping us a lot, it will push us to give the life on the pitch and to think that we need to add the three points for them.”

Meanwhile, Desmarets was remembering that, with the game against Osasuna, Depor starts a series of matches against teams that are also targeting the permanence (Real Sociedad, Espanyol, Levante, Mallorca, Malaga, Racing and Hércules), ”Now it’s time to play our liga; we will face a series of matches in which we need to win at home and specially to not give life to direct rivals. The last place isn’t the proper position for this team; we must be in a higher place, but for it we need to start winning now.”

Finally, Claudio Morel was talking of the player’s motivation ahead of the clash, "There's a commitment, and obviously we are the ones going out to the pitch, so the players are the ones that must revert this situation. With a victory we will leave the last places, but we must achieve it."

List of picked players (20): Aranzubia, Manu (goalkeepers); Laure, Manuel Pablo, Lopo, Colotto, Ze Castro, Morel, Rindarøy, Seoane (defenders); Antonio Tomás, Juan Rodriguez, Juan Dominguez, Rubén Pérez, Pablo Álvarez, Desmarets, Saul (midfielders); Adrian, Lassad and Dioni (strikers).

It hasn’t been an easy start of season for Osasuna; for the first time in several years president Patxi Izco has been questioned by the public opinion, while there were big doubts on the team as its performance on the pre-season wasn’t convincing at all, especially since Los Rojillos didn’t score too many goals, something that has continued during the liga season.

The fans have been nervous and have focused their frustration on the two Iranian at the club: Masoud Shojaei and Javad Nekounam. The main reason is that both arrived late to the pre-season stage, something that was considered as irresponsible by the fans. Since then they have been accused of not giving everything they have on the pitch. It was even said that Masoud was going to be discarded before the liga kickoff, this since Osasuna had 26 players at its squad, but in the end the discarded man was defender Roversio, who ended at Real Betis.

However and despite the criticism, both Iranians were picked for the game at the Riazor and was even commented that both could be starters, though in the end it seems that only one of them will play. Coach José Antonio Camacho is also part of the polemic as he has been accused of not taking enough disciplinary measures against these players.

But the former coach of Spain is more busy dealing with other problems, starting with the fact that he’s losing captain Francisco Puñal, the defender picked his fifth yellow card of the season against Levante, while ex-Celta defender Sergio Fernández is also out due to a knee problem. And the biggest casualty for the Navarrans is ex-Depor Walter Pandiani (hamstring), the Uruguayan striker is the best scorer at the team with two goals in liga, a casualty that’s really painful taking in mind the big problems of Osasuna at the moment of scoring the goals. At least central defender Manuel Jesús Ortiz ‘Lolo’ is returning from suspension.

During the week it was commented that Camacho was thinking in using a triple pivote figure at the Riazor, with Lolo, Nekounam and Soriano, but in the last training he tested a more “offensive” approach: the classical 4-2-3-1. With Nekounam and Fernando Soriano as the two men at midfield.  

The key for Osasuna is to present a strong defensive sector, for it Ricardo will be the starting keeper as he has surpassed a thigh problem had on Friday; ex-Barcelona Damiá Abella will cover the right-back position, and Ignacio Monreal will perform on the left. The central positions will be for Miguel Flaño and Josetxo.

In attack, Juan Francisco Torres ´Juanfran’ will attack from the right flank, ex-Recreativo Javier Camuñas will perform on the left wing, Hungarian Krisztian Vadocz will be the playmaker in the formation and the big doubt is who will be the starting striker claiming the place of Pandiani, the two main candidates are Serbian Dejan Lekic and ex-Numancia man Carlos Aranda.

Defender Josetxo was talking of the game, “After all the weeks they have spent at the last place the logical thing is to see them marking the game as a very important match. And four us it’s the same and we must be fearless and always with the mentality of searching the three points. The environment could be in their favour and surely they will be strong. We just need to have the same intensity, not only defending, because if they start enjoying of opportunities, then they will grow in the game.”

Meanwhile, goalkeeper Ricardo was talking of the negative mark of Osasuna playing away from home, “We can’t be thinking of that; we just need to be focused and go out for everything in a good pitch like the Riazor. Even (Real) Madrid and Barcelona have problems to carry on with their away games; you just need to see the rivals when they play at our stadium. Taking apart the big teams, if we analyse the other teams at Primera, you will realize that all the numbers are similar; we aren’t the freak of the competition.”

List of picked players (18): Riesgo, Ricardo (goalkeepers); Damiá, Josetxo, Lolo, Miguel Flaño, Monreal, Nelson (defenders); Camuñas, Juanfran, Masoud, Nekounam, Rúper, Soriano, Vadócz (midfielders); Aranda, Lekic and Quique Sola (strikers).

Deportivo: (4-2-3-1) Aranzubia – Manuel Pablo, Colotto, Ze Castro or Lopo – Morel or Seoane – Rubén Pérez, Antonio Tomás – Saúl, Lassad, Desmarets - Adrián
Osasuna: (4-2-3-1) Ricardo - Damiá, Miguel Flaño, Josetxo, Monreal – Nekounam, Soriano - Juanfran, Vadocz, Camuñas - Lekic or Aranda
Referee: Miguel Ángel Pérez Lasa
Kick-off: 17h00 CET (Riazor)
Head-to-head Vs Osasuna: 28 wins for Depor, 10 draws, 18 wins for Osasuna (Primera & Segunda)
Record at the Riazor: 20 wins for Depor, 5 draws, 3 wins for Osasuna (Primera & Segunda)



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