Competition news


02 Mar 2014
Depor’s coach insisted that Deportivo need to become a strong team playing at the Riazor, while he refused to give any hint of the starting eleven. Hércules’ coach said that he wants a victory despite the injuries affecting his team.

Enrique ´Quique´ Hernández Martí is a Valencian coach with a unique story, because instead of been a football player at his early years, he became a coach at his 20’s; that’s why he’s one of the coaches with more experience at Segunda División. He has coached 21 different clubs, including Greek Aris F.C. and Levadiakos F.C., plus the regional squad of his native Valencian Community. This is his second stage at Hércules CF.

Within the last two decades he has only been out of action during the years 1998 and 1999. The biggest achievement of Quique Hernandez was the promotion of CD Numancia to Primera in 2004, but his only experience at the elite of Spanish football was with Hércules CF during the season 1996-1997. He was the coach of SD Huesca during the visit to the Riazor at the penultimate matchday of the Segunda campaign 2011-2012, game that meant the last promotion to Primera for the Galicians.

After leaving SD Huesca at the end of that campaign he was hired at Hércules CF; at the time Juan Carlos Mandía was fired at matchday 10.  It was a convulsive season as the Valencian team escaped relegation until the last stretch of the season. He still managed to stay in command of the team; this despite the current season has been full of ups of downs for the Valencian outfit.

Hernández is one of the few coaches at Segunda that already faced Fernando Vázquez in the past.
This is the sixth meeting between both coaches; Depor’s coach won two of the matches, while Hércules’ manager only won one. During the season 1996/97 Hernández’s Hércules CF defeated Vázquez’s SD Compostela (1-0) and later clinched a 2-2 draw. Then, on the Segunda campaign 2004/05 Vázquez’s RC Celta got a 1-1 draw playing at Balaídos against Hernández’s Recreativo de Huelva and later achieved a 2-1 win on the road. And on the first round of the current season Depor defeated Hércules 0-2 at the Rico Pérez stadium.

Depor’s coach addressed the media on Saturday’s noon; he talked to reporters for fifteen minutes. He didn’t give any clue about the lineup, not even about who will be the starting keeper. He started resting importance to the fact that Lux was tested as the starting goalie on Saturday’s training, “When was that? Where? Pure coincidence. I’ve three keepers, besides Manu [Sotelo] is moving that.” Later he said, “I haven’t talked with the keepers. I neither have to do it. It’s a decision of the coach. I would need to know Lux´s level of confidence at this point, and then to make the decision. It’s almost decided what I will do.”

On Saturday, the Galician tactician tested a system with only two centre-backs, but he neither wanted to give any hint of the possible lineup, “Yes. It could be like that, but at the other side we also had Marchena, Álex, Seoane and Luisinho. During the trainings I compose the lines as I could, so everyone can train. I also trained before a line with five defenders, also trained with the midfielders; later we had a training match. “

About the last-minute casualty of Laure, El Profesor said that the Madrilenian defender could be out for two weeks, “He doesn’t even know what happened. At the end of the training he felt something and there’s the chance something could be broken, which means he could be out for more than two weeks, but in the case of Laure you can be sure it will be only for two weeks. I’ve people that can perform on that position. We have four side defenders.”

He was again pushed to reveal the plans for the game, but Vázquez continued evading the questions, “I’ve two centre-backs, also a left-back like Luisinho. Also two right-backs and Manuel Pablo can perfectly perform at the left. There’s always the chance to see Luisinho playing at midfield. Today he trained as a left-back. I can perfectly play with Seoane at the right and Manuel Pablo on the left and then Luisinho at midfield. The clear thing is that I will be in trouble if the three of them are on the pitch and if later we have any inconvenient. I don’t know what you want me to say? [He laughed] I release the lineup one hour before the game. Sometimes the players also end up surprised. Even I’m surprised [He laughed]”

The Castrofeito-born coach explained the reason why Luis Fernández was left out of the list for the second straight opportunity, “Let’s say it’s a tactical decision, well… He must continue improving. I always want the best for my team and sometimes the decisions could be hard, but are necessary. It’s hard for him. There isn’t a player that likes to be out of the lists. They need maturity to assimilate it. It’s a learning process.”

Talking of Hércules CF, the comment was, “They won on complicated pitches, but what happens is that they are irregular. You always like watching them play. They have players that I like and that practice an offensive game. Yes, they are behind at the standings, but nothing is ruled out in this league.”

One of the fears ahead of the game is the weather conditions [it’s expected rain for Sunday]. The coach even said that it could affect the lineup for the match, “It’s something that can affect the game. I expect the pitch will be fine, but let’s say it won’t be in perfect conditions, then I will surely change the way to play and the players that will be on the pitch. We will it see tomorrow. Fortunately we never played in bad conditions. The weather conditions have always respected us.”

One of the main things empathized by Depor’s manager is the importance to improve the results at the Riazor,
“I always said that we need to be more reliable at home, if we would have done it before then we will be closer to the goal. We need to be more solid at home. Until now we don’t know the right path to clinch the results at home. On the road we are more reliable. We need to fin the formula to create more opportunities at home and win the games in an easier way.”

“In the first round, this part of the tournament was perfect to us, and evidently it’s important for us to win at home, we need to earn that confidence, the security of winning a game at the Riazor. At this point we don’t have that internal security.” He added.

He explained why Ibrahim Sissoko was picked for the game and also confessed that the African player isn’t ready to perform for the full game, “He’s evolving, but needs more pace to be ready to perform for the full ninety minutes. He’s ready to have minutes and that’s why he’s on the list. He’s giving his best in order to help us.” He also commented on the status of Rabello, “It’s a matter of knowing his team mates. He needs to release the anxiety of the first games. I still rely on him.”

Finally, Fernando Vázquez was asked if the enthusiasm for the academy players was over, this after Fabril’s coach, José Luis Devesa, commented during the week that playmaker Romay can perfectly have a spot at the first team, “You will know me by my decisions. I believe in what I say, because it is what I think. Clearly the tempos of the academy won’t be dictated by me. I don’t see wrong that the coach of Fabril saying that Romay can perfectly have a spot at the first team. It’s his opinion.”

Hércules’ coach addressed the media on Friday’s morning, just before the long bus trip to A Coruña. His team has been hit by the casualties of Adrián Sardinero and Eldin Hadžić, but he was confident of what the other players can do, “It’s normal to have problems of injuries and suspensions, that’s why the squads are composed of more than eleven players. So, there are chances for other players. This is a football squad. Off course the professionals want to play because it’s their job, and when they don’t play and the partner has the chance to do it, then he should seize it. The competence exists for this reason.”

Alberto Escassi is also a casualty for the game, but the veteran coach explained that he already has the starting choices for midfield territory, “It isn’t a serious case. Escassi perform at the centre of midfield, but it isn’t an imminent choice. If we play with two pivotes then I prefer Yuste and Sissoko, later we can use players like Hervás and Font, but for now I’m confident with the performance of the two pivotes.”

Hernández confirmed that the central attacker will be Gorka Azkorra, and also left the impression that Quique de Lucas is going to be a starter, “De Lucas? It’s probable that he will play as he can bring a lot of things.”  Later he defended Portillo after he was whistled in recent weeks, “The strikers, when they don’t score goals, live a tough time, they don’t feel comfortable and rebel. It isn’t the best moment for Portillo in an emotional sense, but he needs our support and we need him for the last stretch in liga. We need to recover his best version.”

The Valencian coach also said that his team will search for the victory as he explained the virtues of Deportivo, “You cannot sign the draw before playing any game. You always have options, even before a team like Deportivo. They’re up there for something, not only for luck. There’s the rumor that Deportivo is a defensive team and that they don’t play well, but the true is that they know how to manage the games. They just have enough staff to score goals in every game. It’s a very regular team, solid defensively and for this reason they yield their few goals in favour.”

Finally, Quique Hernández talked of the homage that will be paid to Arsenio Iglesias at half-time of the match at the Riazor, “He’s the reference for any coach at Hércules. He has offered great results at all the teams he has coached, especially for us. He was the coach during the most brilliant phase in the history of Hércules. I believe he’s should be the guide for all of us.”



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