Squad news


19 Jan 2011
Fourth confrontation between these two coaches; Depor’s coach just gave the hint that Juca will be one of the starters, whole Almeria’s coach is aware that the narrow 1-0 won’t secure the pass to semifinals.

José Luis Oltra Castañer is a Valencian coach that had a brief career as a midfielder playing for Sabadell and UD Levante. He retired in the year 2000 and started to work as the coach of little Catarroja, he has been described as a coach that likes the offensive football. Later he worked with CD Castellón, UD Levante and Ciudad de Murcia.

For the season 2008/2009 Oltra signed for CD Tenerife and it was a big success as the Canarian club achieved the promotion to Primera División, though they returned to Segunda just twelve months later. At the end of 2009 he took command of UD Almeria after Juan Manuel Lillo was fired after the historic 0-8 loss at home against Barcelona. This is his fourth official confrontation against Miguel Angel Lotina, the first two games ended in a victory for the Basque man, and the other was the past 1-0 win for Almeria in Copa.

Depor’s coach gave a press conference on Tuesday’s morning; he was giving his personal opinion about the possibility of staying alive in Copa, “I’m still thinking that playing in Copa means a bittersweet thing, though it also brings prestige, but one thing doesn’t remove the other. Later we have a hypothetical semifinal against Barcelona, which is not impossible, but complicated. We will try to pass and it might be an opportunity to give experience to young people.”

"Clearly we had a bad result there. If they score again then things would be complicated, but if we score we'll be back into the series. So, it will be a pretty game, they are in a good moment as they demonstrated it against Real Madrid, and it isn’t a team that plays at the back zone. It is true that we haven’t been fine against them in the previous meetings, but that has nothing to do, against Mallorca they won both legs in Copa and in liga they ended allowing four or five goals." He added.

Regardless to the starting eleven that will face the game, the Meñaka-born trainer just gave a couple of hints, “Juca will be a starter, because he is a player that needs minutes; Lopo wasn’t picked because he has some physical problems and there are other central defenders that have been playing. Who won’t play the full ninety minutes is Lassad, because despite he is fine I can’t allow a relapse. In the case of Valerón, clearly he is a player that can be a starter, but some of you think that if Valerón plays then we will score four goals, and it has nothing to do with it.”

More mysterious were his comments regardless to who will play in attack, “The starter could be Dioni or Iago, who wasn’t picked to just tell me jokes on the bench, if I picked the boy it’s for something. We already pulled a lot of players from the B squad due to our necessities, but I don’t like to pick players to see them performing at Primera now and in three years they would be at Tercera or Segunda B, that’s cheating people and it isn’t my way of working, so we are picking youth players because we believe that they are prepared, and I believe that Iago could be an important player in the future.”

The journalists insisted about the possible presence of Adrian at the starting eleven, and Lotina answered that, “We aren’t throwing away the Copa, but if I put Adrian or Lassad at the starting eleven and if later they get injured, then you will call me a fool, and later you will tell me that Barcelona will score five times against us. And I am not a fool. If the doctors tell me that they can play for ninety minutes, then they could play, but if they tell me to be careful, then I will do it and will take the best decision for the group. It isn’t a whim. We have made an analysis and can’t lose both Adrian and Lassad. If they get injured then what should I do against Zaragoza? To put Dioni? I insist, this isn’t a whim and if I would have Riki available, then probably Lassad would be playing for the full game, but an  injury can last two months. People should be aware of the state of Lassad and Adrian, and later it will be time to face Barcelona. To pass to semifinals has a price.”

About new signings, Lotina said that, “It has been commented the possibility of Xisco, but it isn’t the only option that we have, though he is a good player, besides he already knows the club and we already know him, so it is a good choice.”

Before the press conference, Depor’s coach gave an interview to La Voz De Galicia; he was saying that Depor has missed a signing coming from Primera División during the past summer, “I still thinking that we made a pretty squad, what happens is that, among all the signings, nobody was coming from Primera. Rubén, who was the one with the better adaptation, is coming from Segunda B. Saúl from Segunda A. Desmarets, Morel, Urreta and Rindarøy are coming from Primera clubs, but foreigners… we haven’t signed any player from la liga, and that lack of experience has been noticed. I do believe the signings have been pretty, but we have missed that experience.”

He was also making his personal balance on the performance of the team during the first round, “We started badly and are paying the price for it, not only at the standings, but for our way of playing, this due to the anxiety. Though lately the team is improving and that’s the path to follow.”

Finally, Lotina was asked for his renewal with Depor, and he answered that before thinking of it, the team must clinch the permanence, “We must think of 44 points in order to be calmed. And until we reach the 44-point mark we won’t talk of that subject, before we must do the homework, and then we can start talking.”

Almeria’s coach gave a press conference on Tuesday; he was assuring that his players can’t be too confident as the narrow advantage isn’t securing the pass to semifinals, “We will play at the Riazor with a short score of 1-0, though we could have obtained a bigger advantage in the first match, but we can’t return to the past and now we are facing a difficult game. If we go out just thinking in defending then we will surely lost. We will try to show the defensive secureness of recent matches and also our punch in attack.”

“The squad and our fans deserve to see us qualifying to semifinals, and we must try to continue making history in Copa; we already did it as the team entered into quarterfinals, but now want to have a bigger adventure. The players are working at the top, they are showing will and sacrifice, and the fans are suffering on this season, so it should be a joy for them to reach the semifinals.”  He added.

The Valencian coach is aware that Deportivo is going to be a complicate rival, “The game at the Riazor will be hard, because Deportivo also wants to qualify, besides they have tradition in this competition and are playing at home; it is a hard working team and has good football arguments. They are strong in set-pieces, because it has people for it, but it isn’t their only weapon. They like to have the ball and have pretty solid outputs with the ball.” 

For him one of the keys to qualify is the fact that Almeria didn’t allow a goal in the first-leg match, “It will be very important and want to follow the path of recent games, because we were a uncomfortable rival and our defensive like was solid, besides we had velocity and punch in attack.”

Finally, Oltra was admitting that he is forced to make rotations in order to focus in la liga, “Clearly our couple of central defenders is going to be a new one, but we have alternatives. If Pellerano is part of the list is because he can play, Jakobsen too, he can perform at the centre, even Juanito. If this would be the last matchday in liga and if we were playing for the permanence, then we would be forcing the appearance of Marcelo Silva and even Acasiate, but it isn’t the case and we don’t want to assume more risks. Anyhow, the ones playing are the ones performing because we think they are prepared.”



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