Squad news


20 Jan 2013
Deportivo travel to Pamplona searching for their first away win and trying to clear the ghost of the last place. Marchena is a last-minute casualty, while Riki is fit to play. Osasuna is having a lot of problems with the injuries.

Deportivo and Osasuna are presenting very different statistics; still both sides are occupying the last two places at the standings. First to all, the Navarrans are the worst offense in the league with only 14 goals scored, main reason why there are currently at the bottom. Depor, meanwhile, is the team that, on this century, has scored more goals ending the first round in relegation (23).

This opposite behavior can be noticed in the defense, because Osasuna is the third best defense in the league with only 20 goals scored, curiously it’s the same mark of the current leader (FC Barcelona- first time in the history that the leader and the last place are allowing the same number of goals after the first round). Depor, meanwhile, is the worst defense in the league (40), an only one of the three teams that, on this century, allow 40 or more goals at the end of a first round.

Regarding the matches played in Pamplona, Deportivo have conquered positive results there, at least on this century. And it’s that the Galicians have added four victories and three draws within the last ten matches played at the Reyno de Navarra. Depor’s last victory there was on the season 2007/08 with a goal scored by Sergio.

Also, this is the away match number 700 for Deportivo playing at Primera División; in the previous 699 meetings the Galicians added 157 victories and 164 draws suffering 378 defeats, scoring 687 goals and allowing 1,245. Also, Deportivo are dragging a negative streak of 20 straight away matches at Primera without clinching the three points. It’s the same mark of the campaigns 1965/66 & 1966/67.

Second straight away meeting for Deportivo and the Galicians remain as the only winless team in la liga playing away from home. The situation is tight at the bottom of the standings, so every point counts and it’s very important to add on the road. Besides, this is a meeting between the last two places at the standings, so the loser will stay at the bottom. Enough reasons to win, or at least to not lose.

There are several novelties for the game, centre-back Carlos Marchena didn’t surpass a muscle injury and was sidelined from the game, but Riki was cleared to play and will be a starter. Also, new signings Sílvio Azevedo and Paulo Assunção debuted on the past weekend and now will do it as starters.

Coach Domingos Paciência will keep playing with a 4-3-3 scheme, Dani Aranzubia remains at the goal, Manuel Pablo performs at the right-back position, Sílvio covers the left spot, while Aythami Artiles claims the starting role at the centre of the defense playing alongside Ze Castro.

The trivote at midfield is composed by André Santos, Paulo Assunção and Álex Bergantiños. The right wing is for Bruno Gama, the left flank is covered by Pizzi and Riki stays at the centre of the attack.

Together with Marchena, there are other four players at the injury room: Abel Aguilar, Laure, Saul Fernandez and Ayoze. The latter has surpassed an adductor problem, but didn’t receive the medical okay and remain on the sidelines. Once again centre midfielder Juan Dominguez remains out for tactical reasons, the other players out are right-back Diego Seoane and striker Rodolfo Bodipo.

The weather conditions might be a factor in the game, it has been raining in Pamplona and the low temperatures might lead to snow-accumulation, but Javier Camuñas, a former player of Osasuna, said that the weather conditions aren’t an excuse in order to clinch a positive result, ”We must be ready for everything, there are no excuses. Here we also have rain and a cold temperature. I don’t think it will be snowing as it seems and, in the situation we are currently living, the last thing we are looking are the weather conditions.”

Bruno Gama was anxious as he wants the first away victory of the season, ”What we want is to add the largest number of points. We will do anything in order to win. We need the victory. We have the whole second round in front of us and we don’t want to face a lot of pressure for the coming games.”

Similar are the thoughts of Pizzi, ”We are the last two places in la liga, so the side losing the game will be facing a tough situation. We must win there no matter how. What we need to do is to gout there and win the match.”

List of picked players (18): Aranzubia, Lux (goalkeepers); Manuel Pablo, Sílvio, Aythami, Ze Castro, Insua (defenders); Álex Bergantiños, André Santos, Jesús Vázquez, Assunção, Bruno Gama, Pizzi, Salomão, Camuñas, Valerón (midfielders); Riki & Nélson Oliveira (strikers)

CA Osasuna is the current last place at the standings, which means that they’re coming from the farthest position in the last lap of the permanence race. Still, this situation isn’t new for the Navarrans. And it’s that Osasuna has been at Primera within the last thirteen years, which means that they only need one more season in order tie the historic mark of the club, and in this period they ended the first round in relegation during three different opportunities, and the Navarrans always clinched the permanence.

It even lived a worse situation compared to the present scenario during the season 2008/09, at that time the team coached by Camacho ended the first round with only 13 points, but a brilliant second part on the campaign meant to add 30 points and to clinch the permanence thanks to a heroic 2-1 win against Real Madrid. Now they are ready to do the same.

But first coach José Luis Mendilibar must solve some issues, starting with the problems to score the goals. Osasuna is the worst offense in la liga with only 14 goals scored. The top-scorer at the team is striker Quique Sola with only four goals added to his tally, which means the Pichichi with the lesser number of goals among the twenty clubs at Primera.

Another problem is the long list of casualties hitting the team. Centre midfielder Roland Lamah left the club as he was loaned to Premier Club Swansea City AFC. Then there are five players out of the meeting with Depor. Centre midfielder Anthony Annan is playing the African Cup with Ghana, ex-Celta defender Oier Sanjurjo is suspended, while other three men are out injured: keeper Asier Riesgo (toe fracture), winger Sisi (knee ligaments) and centre midfielder David Timor (muscle strain).

The injury of Riesgo moved the club to resign 41-year-old goalie Ricardo López, who already played in the last game against Real Madrid. Besides, they signed former Sporting Miguel De Las Cuevas, who’s debuting in this game.

It’s expected a 4-2-3-1 formation for the clash, with Ricardo at the goal, ex-Tenerife Marc Bertrán covering the right side of the defense, former Betis Damià Abella plays at the left, while the centre backs are ex-Rayo man Alejandro Arribas and ex-Celta Rubén González.

Oier has been playing as centre midfielder in recent games, now veteran Patxi Puñas should be joining Manuel Ortiz, ‘Lolo’ at midfield. Álvaro Cejudo should be attacking from the right wing, ex-Rayo man Emiliano Armenteros performs at the left, De Las Cuevas makes his debut in the playmaking function and Quique Sola is the central attacker.

Defender Rubén didn’t want to describe the game as a final, ”It’s very important, personally I wouldn’t call it a final, because we still have 18 games. I would rather call it a semifinal, almost a final. It isn’t the final point, but it could be a turning point in order to clinch a positive streak facing Depor and Celta, in the middle we visit the Camp Nou, but that’s a different story.”

Meanwhile, striker Kike Sola believes that the home condition is a crucial factor in this match, ”It’s positive, because you always breaths a great environment. We must be prepared for Sunday, because it is a vital match. We need to be strong at home, and with the support of our public it seems that we are playing with one more man. We are focused in the game. The Game against Real Madrid on the past week could be pretty good if we win on Sunday.”

List of picked players (18): Andrés Fernández, Ricardo (goalkeepers); Marc Bertrán, Rubén, Miguel Flaño, Lolo, Arribas, Nano, Damiá (defenders); De las Cuevas, Masoud, Armenteros, Puñal, Cejudo, Raoul Loe (midfielders); Kike Sola, Llorente and Nino (strikers).

Osasuna: (4-2-3-1) Ricardo – Bertrán, Rubén, Arribas, Damià – Lolo, Puñal – Cejudo, De Las Cuevas, Armenteros - Sola
Deportivo: (4-3-3) Aranzubia – Manuel Pablo, Aythami, Ze Castro, Sílvio – Assunção, André Santos, Álex Bergantiños –Bruno Gama, Riki, Pizzi.
Referee: Miguel Ángel Pérez Lasa.
Kick-off: 12h00 CET (Reyno de Navarra)
Head-to-head Vs. Osasuna: 29 wins for Depor, 12 draws, 18 wins for Osasuna (Primera & Segunda)
Record in Pamplona: 8 wins for Depor, 6 draws, 15 defeats for Osasuna (Primera & Segunda)



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