Squad news


11 Nov 2010
Lotina’s Depor still evolving as it achieved its third win in a row; this time to beat Osasuna and pass the round in Copa. However, it wasn’t a good game of Deportivo and only the magic of Valerón and the lack of aim from Osasuna prevented a different score.

Several surprises at the starting lineup presented by Miguel Angel Lotina; firstly Laure wasn’t picked in the final list despite been fit to play, and in the end it was Diego Seoane who played on the right-back position. Colotto wasn’t part of the starting squad, and Aythami Artiles was the one taking his place. The Canarian was one of the four ‘survivors’ from the starting squad against Levante (the other two were Riki, Seoane and Juan Rodriguez). Neither Desmarets nor Lassad were starters, instead Valerón and Riki appeared at the starting eleven.

Still, the Basque coach presented a 5-2-2-1 formation; with Manu at the goal, Seoane performing on the right-back position, Claudio Morel on the left, while the three central defenders were Aythami, Ze Castro and Rochela. The two pivotes were Juca and Juan Dominguez. The two playmakers performing towards the wings were Valerón and Juan Rodriguez and the central attacker was Riki.

At the other side of the pitch, coach José Antonio Camacho was presenting the expected starting eleven, with ex-Celta defender Sergio Fernandez returning after been out for a couple of months, and with two main references in attack: Juan Francisco Torres ‘Juanfran’ and Serbian attacker Dejan Lekic

A distracted Depor had several problems to contain the game of Osasuna; the players on the pitch, mainly the defenders, were feeling out of place with the ‘new’ system and the errors almost cost some goals. Besides, the Galicians barely reached the goal of Riesgo. The Navarrans were the better side on the half, but they were missing more punch, because the great game of Juanfran was counteracted by the lack of aim by Calleja and, especially, by Serbian Dejan Lekic

Osasuna was the more offensive team since the kick-off; the visitors seemed willing to score as soon as possible and were pushing in attack, while Depor was locked at the back and waiting for a chance in a counterattack. However, there were no scoring opportunities within the first ten minutes. Valerón was pretty active but it wasn’t finding the needed connection with Riki.

The first approximation on the game was a mid-distance shot of Nelson that missed the target (11’). Four minutes later the visitors missed a big chance after Lekic took advantage of a distraction from the central defenders, but the crossed shot from the Serbian missed the target. Then Calleja attempted with a drilling shot sent from the left corner of the box, this time Manu sent the ball to corner-kick (16’).

Depor was suffering a lot and it seemed that the players on the pitch were confused, Morel was lost on the left, and neither Valerón nor Juan Dominguez were opening the game by the wings, which forced the team to focus its attack by the centre. Only Seoane was passing to the attack from time to time, but the team preferred other solutions. At least the locals seemed to be growing in the game with the pass of the minutes as they started to reach the goal of Osasuna. The first scoring chance for Depor came at minute 17, it was after a counterattack started by Ze Castro and Juan Rodriguez, in the end Riki attempted from mid-distance, but the striker missed the target.

The first shot on target for Depor was made by Seoane, the side defender was assisted by Juca but it was an easy shot for visiting keeper Asier Riesgo. At minute 23 Riki appeared again to complete a shot from inside the box, but Riesgo made the save. Then Lotina had to make his first substitution as Juca had to be replaced due to a new thigh problem, his place was taken by Ruben Pérez;.to mention that the entry of the Madrilenian midfielder brought a new air to Depor as he was constantly fighting for the ball, and switching between defense and attack.

At minute 30, Riki and Juan Rodriguez made a nice play after the Andalusian stole the ball at midfield, but both players didn’t understand  each other and the ball ended in the arms of Riesgo. But within the final ten minutes Depor started to suffer again, mainly due to Lotina’s men own errors, at minute 34, Morel lost the ball at the edge of the area and Aythami Artiles saved Depor from the goal line as Juanfran was close to score. At minute 42, Lekic attempted with an acrobatic shot from inside the box, but his effort went over the crossbar. And the half ended with a cross of Calleja that defender Sergio sent wide.

It was a weird second part, because the game was really boring at the start and changed as soon as Depor scored the first goal, while Osasuna was playing better after been left with one less man on the pitch. In the end the half turned to be exciting as the Galicians could have increased the lead or, at the same time, the Navarrans could have qualified as they only needed one more goal to achieve the pass.

However, the first ten minutes were a real boredom, both sides were missing the opposite goal and the few fans at the Riazor started to smell a new 0-0, and it’s that nothing important was occurring on the pitch, but without any warning things became really favourable for the Galicians. Firstly Depor found a goal after a new strategic play, Valerón took a corner-kick on the right, the ball was cleared by Osasuna and then Paraguayan Morel recovered to assist Ze Castro, who sent a cross from the right and into the far post, just into the path of <>Riki, who scored through a header.

Immediately, ex-Celta defender Sergio Fernandez was sent out with two yellow cards after he handled the ball at midfield (Just four minutes before he was booked for a foul over Riki). Then Osasuna was in trouble as it needed two goals and was playing with one less man on the pitch. It was then that Depor started to live its best moment in the game, mainly with a Valerón that started to feel more comfortable as he was switching between the left and right. Juan Dominguez was also playing better, especially after Ruben Pérez started to cover his back. Then Ze Castro was close to increase the lead with a mid-distance shot that was saved by Riesgo (58’).

But Osasuna, somehow, managed to react as Lekic finally capitalized one of his several opportunities to score the goal for the Navarrans. Juanfran took advantage of an error of Ze Castro and Ruben Pérez and then assisted Vadocz, who missed to send a proper shot, but the Serbian was there to push the ball in.

But there was to time for regrets as Depor responded with a great play of Valerón, the Canarian made a long run in a counterattack, he combined with Juan Dominguez and then El Flaco passed the ball to Lassad Nouioui, who defined the action with a great shot to the top-corner of Riesgo. It is the first official goal for the Tunisian on the season, actually it is his first goal since November 1st of the past year (against Sporting Gijón in liga).

The game became crazy after the second goal, with Depor trying to score the third and Osasuna forced to equalize in order to stay alive in the competition. Lassad and Ruben Pérez had the next opportunities, but they missed the target. Meanwhile, Osasuna insisted and surrounded the area of Depor, which awoke the nerves at the Riazor, but the defensive line didn’t allow more things. To mention that Ze Castro had to be replaced by Colotto after the Portuguese defender sustained a new muscular problem.

Positive feelings after the third straight win in official competitions; Lotina presented several novelties and his players seemed confused in the beginning with the new system implemented since the first-leg played in Pamplona, luckily Osasuna missed its chances during the first part and Depor didn’t forgive in the second. The best reading of the game was the performance of Valerón, to see that Riki still on fire and to witness the first goal of Lassad in almost a year. The bad news were the injuries of Ze Castro and Juca plus the big errors committed in defense.

So far, twelve teams are already qualified to the last-16 round, ten are from Primera: RCD Espanyol, Real Madrid, Sevilla FC, Villarreal CF, Atletico Madrid, Levante UD, Deportivo, UD Almeria, FC Barcelona and Athletic Bilbao, the only survivors from Segunda are Córdoba CF and Real Betis, while the other four series will be defined on Thursday. The draw for next round will be made in a date to be announced.

Deportivo: (5-2-2-1) Manu - Seoane, Rochela, Aythami, Zé Castro (Colotto 74’), Morel – Juca (Rubén Pérez 28’), Juan Domínguez –Juan Rodríguez, Valerón – Riki (Lassad 53’)
Osasuna: (4-2-3-1) Riesgo - Nelson, Sergio Fernández, Josetxo, Monreal – Lolo, Nekounam – Juanfran (Soriano 66’), Vadocz, Calleja (Quique Sola 66’) – Lekic (Masoud 81’).
Goals: 1-0 (53’) Riki, 1-1: (61’) Lekic, 2-1: (63’) Lassad.
Referee: David Fernández Borbalán. He showed yellow card to Calleja (37’) and Juan Dominguez (54’). Sergio Fernandez was sent off with two yellow cards (56’)
Venue: Riazor (8,000)



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