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REVIEW: REAL SOCIEDAD 3 – DEPORTIVO 0 (LIGA)

26 Oct 2010
New big hit for a Deportivo that’s a shadow of the team that impressed the whole European football a decade ago. Lotina’s team did nothing in attack in the first part, and just when it was starting to react in the second it ended allowing two new goals.

BEFORE THE GAME
No surprises at Deportivo as Lotina was presenting the expected starting formation; with Aranzubia at the goal; Laure on the right-back position, Seoane on the left, while Ze Castro was joining Colotto at the centre of the defense. Rochela was debuting on the season performing alongside Ruben Pérez at midfield; Juan Rodriguez was on the right wing, Desmarets on the left, Lassad was the playmaker and Adrian the central attacker.

At Real Sociedad, Uruguayan coach Martin Lasarte was presenting the predicted starting eleven, with Joseba Llorente leading the attacks, while David Zurutuza was the playmaker in the formation and the threats on the wings were Antoine Griezmann and Xavi Prieto.

FIRST HALF
A harmless Deportivo did nothing in attack against a Real Sociedad team that only needed one simple play to take the lead. The problem for the Galicians was related to the fact that they were stubborn in practicing a direct style that never gave problems to the locals, and that instead it confused its own attackers. To make things worse for the fifth time within the last six liga matches Depor allowed a goal before the 35-minute-mark.

Nothing happened within the first ten minutes, both teams were really cautious and it seemed that nobody wanted to take the initiative, like both teams were afraid to lose. The first approximation of Depor came at minute 7, it was a free-lick of Desmarets at the right side after a foul committed over Laure; the French winger sent the ball to the far post, but local keeper Bravo was there to stop the cross.

Real Sociedad arrived to Depor’s area until minute 13; it was a cross of Xavi Prieto that Llorente couldn’t head on target. Rochela was making a good game blocking the attempts from the locals at midfield, the problem was that Depor wasn’t completing three straight passes and instead it was sending long throws that weren’t finding a receiver.

The first shot on target in the game came at minute 16, Zurutuza attempted from the edge of the area, but it was too easy for Aranzubia. However, the direction of the match changed in the next play as Real Sociedad scored the first goal.

Once again it was a distraction of Depor’s defensive line. Alberto de la Bella had the ball on the right wing, Depor’s defenders were expecting a pass to Griezmann and everybody forgot to mark the player with the ball, and the side defender continued with the play and then he released a cross that Joseba Llorente headed into the bottom right corner of Aranzubia. It’s the fifth time in the last six matches in which Depor leaks a goal within the first 35 minutes.

The goal strengthened the spirit of the Basques as they assumed the total control of the game, while the Galicians were lost and unable to surpass midfield territory. For that reason the locals were feeling pretty comfortable on the pitch and although they weren’t having scoring opportunities, it was pretty clear that they were closer to score a second goal than Depor to conquer the equalizer.

And it’s that the direct game of Depor was drowning the attackers; Lassad was disappeared, while neither Desmarets nor Juan Rodriguez were having the needed depth on the wings, and therefore Adrian wasn’t receiving the ball.

The first big chance in the game for Depor came at minute 34; Lassad made a great play and assisted Desmarets inside the area, but the Frenchman sent the ball over the crossbar when he was facing Bravo. The first half ended with a corner-kick for the locals that Llorente was close to meet inside the box, but in the end the striker missed the ball.

SECOND HALF
Depor played better in the second part, but still the Galicians allowed two more goals as the defense was terrible. The entry of Riki seemed to be a boost as Depor had a couple of clear attempts, but the lack of aim and the effectiveness of Real Sociedad killed a game that was starting to be exciting.

Since the start Riki entered to replace Desmarets; with the move Adrian passed to play on the left wing, so Riki was now the central attacker and Lassad  kept playing as the playmaker in the formation. The locals made the first shot on target on the second part as De la Bella attempted from mid-distance, but Aranzubia made the save.

The truth is that Riki lasted to enter into the game as Depor continued asleep, at minute 53 Lassad provoked a corner-kick that ended with a bicycle-kick attempt from the same Tunisian striker, but he missed the target. Riki appeared for the first time at minute 58 to end releasing a strong shot from the edge of the area that passed close to the right post of Bravo.

With the pass of the minutes Depor was becoming into a team split in two pieces, because the attackers were trying to push forward, while the defenders were a little delayed trying to contain the counterattacks from the locals. Perhaps that’s the reason why Lotina decided to make his second substitution. And it’s that Juan Dominguez replaced Rochela, the central defender made a decent match performing as a defensive midfielder, but now Depor’s coach decided to put a player with offensive ideas at midfield territory, someone that can put together the squad bringing the needed balance, but it wasn’t a successful move.

However, the second half was more entertaining, because Depor was pushing for the goal, something that opened the road to the counterattack from Real Sociedad, in one of those opportunities  Griezmann made a drilling cross that Joseba Llorente couldn’t transform into the second goal. Then Lotina made the final change as Valerón replaced Lassad, another modification that never worked out.

Then Depor had its best opportunity in the game as Adrian sent a cross from the left that Riki transformed into a downward header going into the net, but Claudio Bravo made a great save (67’), and just two minutes later it was Dani Aranzubia the one that made the save after a cross of Carlos Martínez that Grierzmann was close to capitalize. The French winger a real threat on the right wing and he wasn’t going to miss his next chance.

Depor was growing in the game, but then again a distraction at defense cost a new goal. Xabi Prieto sent a cross from the left, Llorente jumped for the ball, but instead Antoine Griezmann was the one that came at the far post to beat Laure in the jump and scored with a simple header. Nobody saw him coming. 

Despite the game seemed decided, both teams were still attacking; at the 73rd minute Griezmann attempted from mid-distance, but the ball missed the target, in the next play it was Adrian who was close to score with an attempt from the penalty spot, but Bravo made another great save. This last save ended with the spirit of Lotina’s Depor as the players threw the towel.

Meanwhile Real Sociedad spent the rest of the match moving the ball over the grass, without any hurries. The locals had a great chance to score a third goal as Jeffrey Sarpong who replaced Griezmann eight minutes before the end, headed out a cross of Xavi Prieto. And then Sarpong appeared again to make a big play that ended with a cross that Depor’s defense couldn’t clear, and then 23-year-old Imanol Agirretxe, a kid from Real Sociedad B that replaced Llorente minutes before, just had to push the ball in from close range. 3-0 and more sorrow for Deportivo. To make things worse Ruben Pérez ended the game with a knee injury.

AFTER THE GAME
Painful defeat for a winless Deportivo that wasted the first part submerged in the ‘direct game’ of Lotina; there was some reaction in the second, but the terrible night of the whole defensive sector defined the match. The team continues to show an apathetic impression and, at this point, it is not possible to see the light at the end of the tunnel.

The result is leaving the team in a delicate situation three points below the safety, and now with the uncomfortable mission of facing the first-leg in Copa Del Rey against Osasuna (Thursday, 21h00), and three days later a new final against RCD Espanyol at the Riazor (Sunday, 17h00 CET).

MATCH STATISTICS
Real Sociedad: (4-2-3-1) Bravo - Carlos Martínez, Ansotegi, Mikel González, De la Bella - Rivas, Aranburu – Griezmann (Sarpong 81’), Zurutuza (Markel 69’), Xabi Prieto - Joseba Llorente (Agirretxe 85’).
Deportivo: (4-2-3-1) Aranzubia - Laure, Colotto, Zé Castro, Seoane - Rubén Pérez, Rochela (Juan Dominguez 57’) – Juan Rodríguez, Lassad (Valerón 65’), Desmarets (Riki 46’) - Adrián
Goals: 1-0 (16’) Joseba Llorente, 2-0: (70’) Griezmann, 3-0 (86’) Agirretxe.
Referee: José Luis Paradas Romero. He showed yellow card to Desmarets (21’), Aranburu (50’), Ruben Pérez (65’) and Griezmann (70’).
Venue: Anoeta (18,000)
Other statistics: Ball possession (51% - 49%); Total shots (10 - 7); Shots on target (7 - 2); Saves by the keepers (2 - 4); Corner-kicks  (4 - 3); Offsides (0 - 0); Fouls committed (17 - 15); Accuracy in the passes (85.65% - 85.81%)

* RESULTS & STANDINGS

ARCHIVE NEWS OCT/10

ZAPPING

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