Squad news

PREVIEW: SD EIBAR – DEPORTIVO (LIGA)

15 Dec 2013
Last away game in 2013; Depor try to keep the leadership at Segunda allowing the return of the figure of two veteran centre-backs at the lineup. The rival is the best newcomer and one of the pleasant surprises on the season.

STATISTICS: THE BEST NEWCOMER
SD Eibar are making an impressive campaign in their return to Segunda; the Basques are currently sixth at the standings after adding 25 points in 17 matchdays.  It’s the best mark among the four clubs that clinched the promotion from Segunda B on last season.  In recent years it has been common to witness a recently promoted club making a solid start in this league.

Last season it was SD Ponferradina, side that had the same number of points after the first 17 matchdays, though they were 8th at the standings. On the season 2011/12 it was CD Guadalajara, team that had 28 points after the same number of games and was lying at the 8th position. And for the campaign 2010/11 the surprise was Barcelona B; the Catalan youngsters had 27 points at this height of the competition and were 6th on the table.

Eibar have been decent playing at Ipurúa on this season; they have clinched four wins in eight games played there, though they already lost twice: 0-3 Vs. FC Girona (matchday 02) and 0-1 Vs. RCD Mallorca (matchday 16). But more impressive is the away record of Depor: 6 wins in 8 matches. It’s the best mark in the league since the tournament is composed by 22 teams (1997/98).

Actually, the record of away victories in a Segunda league of 22 teams is 12: Real Valladolid (2006/07) and Atlético Madrid (2001/02). And Depor, without reaching the midpoint of the season, already clinched the half of that mark. This is the fifth visit of Deportivo to the Ipurúa stadium. The only victory there for the Galicians was clinched on the Segunda tournament 1989/90: 0-1 with a goal scored by Sabin Bilbao.

DEPORTIVO: VETERANS AT THE CENTRE
For the first time on the league season Fernando Vázquez is opting in playing with two veteran centre-backs at the same time. Until now the phenomenal campaign of Pablo Insua had caused a break in the hierarchy of Depor’s defense, used in recent years to rely in veteran players for that positions (Ze Castro, Colotto, Lopo, Coloccini).

Actually, on this season there was a time when the coach relied in two players from the academy for this positions, this caused by the injuries and the true is that the outcome was positive as Álex Bergantiños made a great job playing there, even Uxío Marcos made an acceptable job when he had to play in the home meeting against Real Murcia (matchday 04).

Now the suspension of Insua is moving the coach to return to the “old formula” of playing with two veterans at the centre of the defense. 32-year-old Kaká and 34-year-old Carlos Marchena are going to start in this game, which is a complicate task as Depor visit the sixth place at the standings.

 It’s just the third time in which both men are starters at the same time. It happened on this season during the Copa meeting against Real Jaen (Oct 16), though in that opportunity Marchena was a centre midfielder and Kaká played at the centre of defense composed by five men (5-2-2-1 formation). So, in the end the only opportunity in which both men were starters acting as centre backs (4-2-3-1) was in last season’s defeat at the Riazor facing Real Madrid (1-2; Feb 23)

For the game Fernando Vázquez is planning to return to the 4-1-4-1 figure. German Lux is the starting keeper, Laure performs at the right side of the defense, Manuel Pablo plays on the left and the central defenders are the mentioned couple  Kaká-Marchena.

Álex Bergantiños is the centre midfielder, Juan Carlos performs towards the right wing, Portuguese Luisinho does it at the left, while the centre midfielders are Juan Dominguez and Argentine Juan Culio.

The doubt is who is going to be the starting striker; Luis Fernández has been a starter within the last six matches, but Borja Bastón is coming after scoring a goal against Alavés, which was his first game as a starter in almost two months. Vázquez said on Friday that he hadn’t decided yet who was going to play there.

Antonio Núñez is one of the big novelties for the game; he returns after one month injured. Uxío Marcos is the other novelty as he’s replacing suspended Pablo Insua. Centre midfielder Paulo Teles is the other Fabril’s player picked for the game. But Javier Arizmendi was left out of the meeting despite he was already training with the rest of the squad. The other players at the injury room are Cezary Wilk and Álvaro Lemos.

Borja Bastón said before the game that he feels an improvement in the offensive game of Deportivo, ”We have taken an evolutionary leap in the game and it has been noticed. We are creating more scoring opportunities; we are feeling looser in attack and this is a benefit for the strikers. Now our intention is to add the next six points. As bigger the mattress of points for the end of the season, the better.”

Juan Dominguez was talking of the differences between the last two systems implemented by the coach, ”When we play 4-4-2 there are more people at midfield, but still there’s enough space; we aren’t gathered at the centre and it allows us to move with freedom. It brings more game having two strikers. The 4-1-4-1 has other advantages. In the end all the systems have advantages and problems, but I’m feeling comfortable with both.”

Finally, the Galician midfielder was talking of the rival, ”Eibar are a strong team, especially when they are playing at home. It’s going to be tough to add points. It would be extremely important to add the three points. Only a few teams will be able to win there and, if we are one of them, then we should feel proud.”

List of picked players (18): Lux, Fabricio (goalkeepers); Manuel Pablo, Laure, Seoane, Luisinho, Uxío, Kaká, Marchena (defenders); Álex Bergantiños, Juan Domínguez, Juan Carlos, Teles, Antonio Núñez, Culio (midfielders); Luis Fernández, Rudy & Borja Bastón (attackers).

EIBAR: ANOTHER DEFENSIVE WALL
SD Eibar and Deportivo had a very similar pattern on this league season; both are team characterized by their solid defense and their weakness is to only score a few goals. In the case of the Basque team they are the fourth best defense in the league with only 17 goals allowed in 17 matches, only behind Depor (9), AD Alcorcón (11) and CD Numancia (16).

Their strong defense is the main reason to explain their current position at the standings, because between matchdays 8 & 15 they only allowed five goals, enough to clinch 17 of the 25 points they have added until this moment of the tournament.

Ex-Depor keeper <Diego Rivas, now the substitute at SD Eibar, was commenting the issue, ”Gaizka Garitano is a coach that emphasizes the defensive intensity. We barely have players to define the games. We win because we are a block; we play together and work fine under pressure. We all ran a lot, there are many aids and always help the partner. Our strength is the block. Player by player, surely we lose because Deportivo have great footballers, but football is a collective sport and we try to obtain something positive with our work and always try to seize our strengths.”

Despite been a recently promoted club, Los Armeros are considered as a “classic” in the league with 25 seasons at Segunda. Their €3 million budget limit them to rely in youngsters from the academy and mainly in young players coming loaned from other clubs, especially Real Sociedad, currently they have three players loaned only from that club.

It isn’t something new as in the recent past this club was used on order to bring experience to current international players at Spain like Xabi Alonso (2000/01) and David Silva (2004/05). Totally there are seven players performing on loan at SD Eibar.

The problem for the game against Depor is that three of their defenders are suspended for the meeting, and all of them are normal starters for coach Gaizka Garitano. Left-back Yuri Berchiche was sent off in the past game against SD Ponferradina at minute 77, while other two men picked the fifth yellow card on the season: right-back Manuel Castellano ‘Lillo’ and centre-back Raúl Albentosa. The trio is among the four top defenders with more minutes on the season.

So, the main novelties for the game against Depor are located at the sides, Eneko Bóveda will make his fifth appearance on the season playing at the right side of the defense, while Gorka Kijera is completing his fourth game performing at the left. The central positions are for captain José María Añibarro and ex-Celta B man Raúl Navas. Xabi Irureta is the goalkeeper.

The lineup is a 4-2-3-1 figure, with José Luis Morales as the central attacker, Brazilian Gilvan Gomes attacks from the left flank, while ex-Real Sociedad Diego Rivas and Dani García are the centre midfielders.

On loan player from RC Celta José Ignacio ´Jota’ Peleteiro is the right winger and Mikel Arruabarrena is the playmaker; the latter is the second best scorer at the team with only three goals in favour. The top-scorer is Urko Vera (4), who is the usual substitute despite only played the half of the minutes compared to Arruabarrena

Galician Jota was commenting the fact of been facing Depor, ”Sunday’s game is special to me as a rival from my land is coming, with people that I know. I played with many of them at the youth teams and Manu Sotelo [Depor’s keepers trainer] was my coach at Celta B. Depor is from my land and I don’t understand why the rivalry between Galicians is converted into hate. For me to see them coming here is an extra motivation and it’s always helpful.”

List of picked players: It will be released until Sunday.

PROBABLE LINEUPS
Eibar: (4-2-3-1) Irureta - Bóveda, Añibarro, Raúl Navas, Kijera – Dani García, Diego Rivas – Jota, Arruabarena, Gilvan – Morales.
Deportivo: (4-1-4-1) Lux – Laure, Kaká, Marchena, Manuel Pablo – Álex Bergantiños – Juan Carlos, Juan Domínguez, Culio, Luisinho - Luis or Borja Bastón.
Referee: José María Sánchez Martínez (Murcian delegation)
Kick-off: 12h00 CET (Ipurúa)
Head-to-head Vs. Eibar: 3 wins for Depor, 2 draws, 3 wins for Eibar (Segunda)
Record in Ipurúa: 1 win for Depor, 2 draws, 1 win for Eibar (Segunda)

ARCHIVE NEWS DEC/13

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