Competition news


07 Mar 2011
A former coach of Real Sociedad facing a former player of Deportivo; Lotina was asking his strikers to score the goals at the Riazor, while Lasarte sees the match as a special confrontation against his former club.

Uruguayan Martín Bernardo Lasarte Arróspide, nicknamed ‘Machete’, is a former player of Deportivo that started his career as a coach during the year 1996. He joined the Galician club on the year 1989 and was part of the historic team that achieved the last promotion to Primera División, he left the club in 1992, at the time he was the captain of the squad.

He started his career as a coach after returning to Uruguay, despite not achieving any title his results were always positive and later worked for a couple of years in the United Arab Emirates, he returned to Uruguay and also spent one season coaching in Colombia. In 2009 he made the big jump to Spain and signed as the sporting director of Real Sociedad, at the time the Basque team was submerged in a huge crisis and was playing at Segunda División, then it was decided that Lasarte was the right person to lead the comeback campaign to Primera, this no matter he had no experience as a coach in Europe. In the end it was a good choice as the Uruguayan man achieved the mission during the past season. And currently is completing a solid campaign at the elite.

This is the second meeting of Lasarte against Miguel Angel Lotina playing for Primera División, but these two men already faced each other during a friendly game, it was in July of 2005 as the Espanyol of Lotina drew 1-1 with Uruguayan club Nacional, side that was coached by Lasarte; the match took place in Nanjing (China); since that day both men established a friendship and call each other from time to time. It has been said that Lasarte is like Lotina, i.e. the type of coach that knows how to maintain the peace inside the changing room. Also to mention that Depor’s second, José Luis Ribera, is a former player of Real Sociedad.

Depor’s coach gave a press conference on Sunday; he started confirming that Aythami is the chosen one to replace Lopo at the starting team, also that Juan Rodriguez will take part of the starting team, though he didn’t want to say in which position. He was insisting in keeping the intensity of the latest games, “We must always play with the same intensity, that’s the key. If we go out as we have been doing it, then we will have football and will make a good game, but can’t forget of other important things, like been plugged since the beginning.”

“In recent home matches the public has been supporting us, but now Real Sociedad is coming and we  need to provoke things by ourselves. We came after the euphoria against Real Madrid and the public will probably come in order to see what happens. I want to say to the fans that we are nothing without them, and this team, due to its own characteristics, needs the support of the fans. It is an important moment on the season and we must win the home games at any cost.” He said regarding the influence of the fans to achieve the latest results.

Then, the Basque coach was asking for an additional effort from his strikers, “We have scored goals, but if you start comparing teams, then you will realize that we aren’t among the best ones on this department. Osasuna had taller player on the other day. In today’s football the coaches work with everything, both at defense and attack, so it’s logical to have more pressure.”

“We are living a better moment compared to the first part of the season, and in order to give a new step forward, I am asking my strikers to carry forward with the weight of the goals at the Riazor. At home the strikers should be the ones scoring the goals, it always been like that. Away from home any midfielder can score no matter it’s a free-kick, a corner, a counterattack…but at home the strikers are the ones that should mark the difference.” He added.

Finally, Lotina was analyzing the rival, “Real Sociedad is playing well, surely it’s one of the revelations on the season. They are coming back from Segunda; like many great clubs that had a tremendous history and that spent troubled years at Primera and suffering the relegation, later they spent three years at Segunda… but now everything is euphoria, same thing lived by Sporting. Now it is very important to be at Primera, you valorize everything; the players are confident and are completing a very interesting season.”

Real Sociedad’s coach gave a press conference on Saturday; he was talking of his expectations from the match and also said that he wants the three points, “We never go out trying to take care of ourselves or thinking of a draw; on Monday we will try to take something. It is going to be a close game, without spaces. We must be careful, because they are dangerous through the stationary plays.”

“We have had a change compared to the previous season, because before we knew that our strength was at defense and sometimes it was enough to help us to win a match. Now, playing at the elite, sometimes a strong defense isn’t enough to win a game, it is different. We need to be more solid.” He added.

Before the press conference, the Uruguayan coach talked to La Voz de Galicia and explaining the meaning of returning to the Riazor, “During the previous weeks you feel the day approaching, but you're focused on your team. And now the game it’s already there and to some extent you feel butterflies in the stomach. I am going back to a field and a city where I spent unforgettable moments. I would be lying if I said that is just one more game. I am a professional and now I defend Real Sociedad until death and I want to win in A Coruña, but my heart tells me that to play at the Riazor doesn’t mean another game.”

He also confessed that he has bad memories of his exit from Deportivo, “With the pass of time, it is already being forgotten. But at the time I left the club in pain, because I thought I could still give something more. Maybe not to play 50 games a year, but for adding minutes and been part of the group, because we shouldn’t forget that this team suffered a lot and I think that's I could have contributed with some things. But now I don’t hold a grudge against anyone and I love this club.”

Finally, Lasarte talked of the welcome that he expects to meet, “Ugh. I shudder. I don’t know what will happen. I guess the reception will be what I have sown. I hope they won’t whistle me or anything like that, but if they welcome me like in that way, then I assume it is because I didn’t match the expectations. And if they welcome me with love, it will be because they have understood that at all times I have given everything for this club. Again, now I defend the same colors, but with a different shield and I owe to this team, but always keep an affection and respect for the fans.”



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