Squad news


31 Oct 2010
Depor will try to clinch its first win of the season and for it Lotina is rescuing the system with five defenders, all of this in the day in which he has more casualties for injury reasons. Meanwhile Espanyol targets Europe and arrives with Verdú and Duscher.

Deportivo and Zaragoza were the only two Primera clubs without victories during this season, but during the week Los Maños clinched a 1-0 win over Real Betis for Copa Del Rey, while the Galicians could only obtain a 1-1 draw in Pamplona. Now Depor and Segunda clubs Recreativo de Huelva and CD Tenerife remain as the only three winless teams at the top two divisions of Spain.

Meanwhile, RCD Espanyol is living a sweet moment as the Catalans occupy the fifth position in the table, all thanks to their perfect record of four wins in four matches played at home, the problem is that their performance is irregular when they play outside of the Cornellá-El Prat, and it’s that Los Periquitos have lost three of their four away matches: 0-4 at Villarreal (matchday 02), 0-3 at Real Madrid (matchday 04) and 0-1 at Real Sociedad (matchday 06).

At least the Galicians have an impressive record playing at home against Espanyol, with nine wins within the last twelve visits of the Catalans; however Depor’s players still remembering the painful 2-3 defeat of last season; a match that was considered as the worst game of Lotina’s team during the first round of the season 2009/2010.

Coach Miguel Angel Lotina is ready to repeat the same scheme that left positive sensations during the Copa clash with Osasuna, actually he is ready to repeat the same starting lineup, with the only novelty of Adrian replacing Riki at the centre of the attack.

It is the system of five defenders, with three men at the centre and two at the sides acting at times like real wingers; then the draw presents two playmakers that join the sides in order to support the side defenders each time they move in offense. It is a system that saved Depor from relegation three years ago and that even allowed the team to qualify for the Intertoto Cup; now Lotina hopes that history will be repeated.

Manuel Pablo was explaining the current situation in the implementation of this system, “Defensively, the rivals find more difficulties to find spaces and create scoring opportunities. It is hard for them if we do it right. We were not defending well with the line of four men, because we were allowing a lot of goals. But the systems are only successful if the players do a good job. We didn’t have much time to rehearse, it's true, but some have already played with that system. The game on Copa has helped us to remember some concepts; we still commit mistakes in some movements.”

Another of the main things ahead of the clash is the large list of casualties; it was expected to witness the return of Andrés Guardado (hamstring) and Juca (muscular), but in the end both players were left out of the list despite both already started to train with the squad. Besides, Laure (ankle) and Desmarets (thigh) are missing the game after sustaining their injuries before the Copa game with Osasuna. And the last man joining the long list of casualties was Ze Castro, who sustained a thigh injury on Saturday’s training session.

In the end the quintet is joining Michel, Antonio Tomas and Urreta at the injury room. This means that Lotina has eight casualties due to injury reasons, the highest number for a liga game on this season, besides Claudio Morel wasn’t picked as the Paraguayan missed one week of trainings due to his visa problems, therefore Lotina had to pick Fabril’s defenders David Rochela and Diego Seoane in order to complete his list of eighteen players.

Aranzubia will be the starting goalkeeper; Manuel Pablo will be the right-back defender and Knut Rindarøy will make his third appearance as starter on the season performing on the left sector, while the three central defenders will be Diego Colotto, Albert Lopo and Canarian Aythami Artiles.

At midfield, Ruben Pérez and Juan Rodriguez will cover the pivote functions, while Pablo Alvarez and Saul Fernandez will still acting as the two playmakers performing towards the wings. Finally, as it was explained before, the only change compared to the squad in Copa is the appearance of Adrian in attack, movement that will leave Riki on the bench, though Lotina didn’t want to confirm this modification during his press conference.

List of picked players (18): Aranzubia, Manu (goalkeepers); Manuel Pablo, Aythami, Rochela, Colotto, Lopo, Seoane, Rindarøy (defenders); Rubén Pérez, Juan Dominguez, Juan Rodríguez, Valerón, Saúl, Pablo Álvarez (midfielders); Adrián, Lassad and Riki (strikers).

The Catalans are currently occupying the fifth position in the table, and the debate on the street is if the team coached by Mauricio Pochettino is really a candidate to end among the top six places in la liga or if the present results are only a mirage. And it’s that Espanyol is the only club between the top eight places at Primera with a negative goal difference. Actually, of their five victories on the liga season only once they were able to win by a difference of two or more goals: 3-1 Vs. Getafe (matchday 01).

The rest were narrows wins, while two of their three defeats have been humiliating setbacks: 0-4 at Villarreal and 0-3 at Real Madrid. For that reason the media doubts of their European possibilities and prefers to wait more time in order to judge the real potential of Los Periquitos

Ahead of the clash at the Riazor, Pochettino is having two important casualties: striker Pablo Daniel Osvaldo, who is serving his last match of suspension, and midfielder Javi Márquez, who wasn’t able to surpass a toe injury suffered during the week. But the Argentine coach is recovering Cameroonian keeper Carlos Kameni, who missed the last three games due to a thigh injury.

And that’s the big doubt for the game, because his replacement, Argentine Cristian Álvarez, has made a great job and Pochettino has even admitted that he hasn’t decided yet who will the starter against Depor. More problematic is to find a replacement for < b>Javi Márquez, the Catalan pivote has made a solid job on the season and the coach still thinking of who should replace him, the options are to delay the position of Joan Verdú -he played as a pivote with Lotina- to allow the entry of Andalusian José Raúl Baena or to use Manu Molina, a 18-year-old midfielder from Espanyol B.

What’s clear is the defensive line that will be presented on the 4-2-3-1 formation;  Francisco Javier Chica will perform on the right-back position, David García de la Cruz will do the same on the left and the couple at the centre will be composed by Víctor Ruiz and Argentine Juan Daniel Forlín.

Ex-Depor Aldo Pedro Duscher will be one of the pivotes and in the end the media in Catalonia expects that José Raúl Baena will be the chosen one to replace < b>Javi Márquez, which will allow to the other former Depor’s player, Joan Verdú, to keep performing as the playmaker in the formation.

Luis García will attack from the right wing, while José María Callejón will do it from the left flank; finally Sergio García will be the central attacker, the ex-Betis man still scoreless on the season. To mention that Pochettino has picked three Espanyol B players for the game: defender Jordi Amat Maas, midfielder Manuel Molina Valero and striker Álvaro Vázquez García, this last one is on fire as he is the current top-scorer at Espanyol B with three goals at Segunda B and as he also scored twice in Copa Del Rey against Real Valladolid (2-0 win).

Aldo Duscher was talking of the current situation at Espanyol, "The results have been great for us. We are a young team eager to do great things, but this has just begun, a lot still ahead and we do have room for improvement. Away from home is where we have an unfinished business and we need to get used to win. Some players are fine, eager and very excited, but we can’t just stay there; we need to continue adding more points.”
The other former player of Depor, Joan Verdú, wants to win the game against the Galicians, “We will go out for the win in the attempt to continue with our good streak: I always wish the best for Depor, off course, but it should be starting on next Sunday. They aren’t living a good moment, but I’m convinced that they will surpass this moment. They have a great team. I am wishing to do a great job, as last year, because I scored a goal there.”

Finally, striker Luis Garcia was saying that Espanyol should get used to win the matches, “It’s important to achieve a new win and get used to do it. We should focus on following this line, having the same confidence and waiting for the results, which in the end is the important thing. We need to be ambitious and aspire to win everything. In all the pitches we should try to demonstrate our philosophy.”

List of picked players (19): Kameni, Cristian Álvarez (goalkeepers); Chica, David García, Dídac, Víctor Ruiz, Forlín, Amat (defenders); Baena, Callejón, Verdú, Javi López, Duscher, Dátolo, Molina (midfielders); Luis García, Sergio García, Iván Alonso and Álvaro (strikers).

Deportivo: (5-2-2-1) Aranzubia - Manuel Pablo, Lopo, Aythami, Colotto, Rindarøy – Juan Rodríguez, Rubén Pérez – Pablo Álvarez, Saúl – Adrián.
Espanyol: (4-2-3-1) Kameni or Cristian Álvarez - Chica, Víctor Ruiz, Forlín, David García - Duscher, Baena - Luis García, Verdú, Callejón - Sergio García.
Referee: Alberto Undiano Mallenco
Kick-off: 17h00 CET (Riazor)
Head-to-head Vs Espanyol: 30 wins for Depor, 16 draws, 30 wins for Espanyol (Primera & Segunda)
Record at the Riazor: 23 wins for Depor, 10 draws, 5 wins for Espanyol (Primera & Segunda)



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