Squad news


05 Apr 2014
Long list of injury problems hitting Deportivo; Fernando Vázquez will have to improvise in case that Marchena isn’t available, but at the same time he recovers Luisinho to face the resurrected team at Segunda División.

The promotion campaign of Deportivo is holding on the away performance of the team. The Galicians are one of the three teams that have added more points on the road than at home; actually Depor is the best visiting team in the league after adding 28 points in 15 away meetings.

In this sense Deportivo has added nine wins on the road, which is the second best mark of the Galicians playing in a league competition tied with the victories clinched in the Primera campaigns 1993/94, 1996/97, 2002/03 & 2005/06. The record was imposed two years ago when Oltra’s Depor added 11 victories at Segunda. And with six away games still in the schedule, <Los Blanquiazules have big chances of breaking the mark.

But this won’t be an easy match as Real Madrid Castilla is a team that has shown a solid reaction in the second round, only losing three games in the period. But the Madrilenian youngsters are dragging problems playing at the Alfredo Di Stéfano stadium (located in the Sporting city of Valdebebas), this since they are the fifth worst local team in the league (22 points in 16 matches). In 2014, Castilla have only won twice at home: 4-0 Vs. Hércules CF (February 2) and 3-1 Vs. Barcelona B (February 15).

Depor have visited Real Madrid Castilla in twelve opportunities clinching three victories. The last victory there took place during the Segunda season 1988/89 as Arsenio Iglesias’ team clinched a 2-1 victory with goals scored by Raudnei and Vicente.

For the first time on the season Deportivo are facing a liga match having four players out for injury reasons. In previous moments on the campaign there were one or two players at the same time at the injury room. Luckily for coach Fernando Vázquez the winter signings raised the number of players at the squad to 22, so for the trip to Madrid he exactly had 18 men available at the first team.

The problem is that the four men out were crucial pieces at the lineup. Diogo Salomão was the revulsive in attack that Depor needed, Toché was the most in-form player in attack, while Pablo Insua and Álex Bergantiños were crucial at defense and also were two of the three players with more minutes in the league tournament

The last problem was suffered by Carlos Marchena; the Madrilenian didn’t end Friday’s training due to a muscle problem on his right hip. He remained in the list of picked players, but Vázquez extended the number of men in the list to nineteen after adding the name of Fabril’s centre-back Stefan Deák. The 23-year-old Serbian defender already played in Copa and this could be his debut in liga.

Juan Dominguez was feeling sorry for the injury problems hitting the team, but he’s optimistic of the team’s potential, “We aren’t having luck in that sense, we have suffered several injuries that aren’t short-term cases, but we already spent similar situations and normally we have surpassed these scenarios. We need to be ready with the people that are available. We need to compete with the players that are still available, because they are very useful.”

At the same time the coach is recovering Luisinho, who’s returning after serving his four-match ban. It’s an important boost as Deportivo gain depth on the left wing, though the attention during the week has been more focused on his conflict with Juan Carlos.  About this incident the Portuguese player apologized after Thursday’s training and the case was closed by the club.

Another boost for the coach is that the hamstring problem sustained during the week by Ibrahim Sissoko didn’t prevent him to be picked for the meeting; actually he completed Friday’s session without any problem and is now expected to be a starter.

So, it’ expected that Vázquez is going to continue with the 4-2-3-1 figure, with several players without too much participation in 2014 having a new chance due to the circumstances.  German Lux covers the goal, Laureano Sanabria ‘Laure’ performs at the right-back position, Diego Seoane plays on the left.

Albert Lopo and Carlos Marchena should be the centre-backs, two highly experienced defenders to face one of the two U-23 teams in the league. However, the injury concern with Marchena could force the coach to improvise, either in playing with veteran Manuel Pablo in this position or to rely in Stefan Deák. Vázquez said before the game that he hasn’t’ decided yet the alternative.

Juan Dominguez is one of the centre midfielders. He’s joined by Cezary Wilk. It’s only his fourth appearance as a starter in 2014, but the Polish told to reporters on Thursday that he’s ready to play, “The coach is the one that makes the decisions. I’m ready to play, but we’ll see. I know that Álex has a problem with his knee, but we’ll see. I’ve been training with the team and I’m ready. I’m a professional player and am waiting for a chance. There’s no problem if I have to play for the full game.”

This time the coach is ready to exploit the wings, so Antonio Núñez, who made his last appearance as a starter in February facing Sporting Gijón, attacks from the right wing, Luisinhodoes it from the left, while Sissoko remains performing in the playmaking function.

Finally, Borja Bastón is the central attacker. The Madrilenian remains as the best scorer at the team (8 goals added to his tally), however he has been one of the victims of the winter reinforcements as within the last six games he has only played for eleven minutes (matchday 29 at SD Eibar).

Uruguayan attacker Diego Ifrán will be on the bench waiting for a chance, he commented what the players expect from Real Madrid Castilla, ”They display a direct game, different to the one practiced by Barca B. We know that we must remain strong and not give any option to these future cracks, as you normally describe them.”

Finally, Laure was recalling the importance of these last meetings in the league, ”We cannot be afraid; instead we need to have responsibility, knowing that every point is really important. The equality is pretty high in the league and the most responsible team, or the one playing better with its cards, will be the one remaining at the top”.

List of picked players (19): Lux, Fabricio (goalkeepers); Laure, Manuel Pablo, Luisinho, Seoane, Lopo, Marchena, Deák (defenders); Juan Dominguez, Wilk, Núñez, Juan Carlos, Sissoko, Rabello (midfielders); Luis Fernández, Arizmendi, Borja Bastón & Ifrán (attackers)

Never before a Segunda team has been able to clinch the permanence after losing the first seven games in the competition. Castilla not only lost the first seven games in a row, but also lost nine of the first ten meetings, five months later they are out of relegation, though only one point above the pit.

This incredible reaction has been possible after the arrival of coach José Manuel Díaz, who only lost 3 of 19 games in which he commanded the Madrilenian team on this season. And the main virtue of his team is the capacity to score goals; after all they are the best scorer in 2014 at Segunda with 24 goals in favour, above CD Tenerife (21), Sporting Gijón (19), Barcelona B (18) and RCD Mallorca (18).

The big difference with Barcelona B is that the priority at Castilla is not to have ball, but to create scoring chances through fast counterattacks, which explains their efficiency before the opposite goal. It also contributed the fact that the offensive players at the team are reacting after a grey start of season. Winger Jorge Franco ‘Burgi’ is the most important reference up front, while top-scorer Raúl de Tomás has scored five of his seven goals on the season during 2014. Brazilian Willian José scored a hat-trick three weeks ago before Recreativo de Huelva, the first at the team since 2006.

For the game against Deportivo, the coach is recovering striker Willian José and centre midfielder Sergio Aguza, duo that’s returning from a suspension. However, Willian José won’t play against the Galicians as he was included in the list of the first team for the visit to Real Sociedad.

It’s expected a 4-2-3-1 formation. Fernando Pacheco is the starting keeper; Joaquín Marín ‘Quini’ performs at the right-back position, captain Jorge Casado, who already debuted with the first team playing in Copa Del Rey, covers the left sector, while the centre backs are Uruguayan Leandro Cabrera and Diego Llorente.

Omar Mascarell and Sergio Aguza are the centre midfielders, A Coruña-born Lucas Vázquez attacks from the right wing, Burgi does it from the left, while José Rodriguez performs behind top-scorer Raúl de Tomás. Rodriguez is another of the reasons for the recent improvement, a normal centre midfielder that lately has been performing in the playmaking function.

Before the game, Diego Llorente emphasized that his team needs to be strong and avoid the errors in these crucial moments, ”All the games until the end will be finals and we must face them like that. We must face the games with hope and with a high concentration, and especially we need to avoid the errors, because in the end it is what determines if we lose or not.”

Centre midfielder Aguza was talking of Deportivo, ”Deportivo is a team that seizes their goals and that only allows a few; you never know what could happen when they face a B team, because it could be wild, a game in which both sides can lose control, but we’ll try to make our game and pick up the three points.”

Finally, Lucas Vázquez was also talking of the team from the city where he was born, ”It’s a balanced team with a strong defense and is going to be hard to score against them, besides they can kill you in a set-piece. It’s a very complicate rival that’s currently at the second position and it’s going to be a really hard game.”

List of picked players (18): Pacheco, Rubén Yáñez (goalkeepers); Casado, Quini, Llorente, Noblejas, Pulido, Cabrera (defenders); Mascarell, José Rodríguez, Aguza, Jaime, Lucas Torró, Burgui, Lucas Vázquez (midfielders); Sobrino, Raúl de Tomás & Pablo Felipe (attackers)

Castilla: (4-2-3-1) Pacheco - Quini, Llorente, Cabrera, Casado - Mascarell, Aguza - Lucas Vázquez, José Rodríguez, Burgui – De Tomás.
Deportivo: (4-2-3-1) Lux - Laure, Lopo, Marchena, Seoane – Wilk, Juan Domínguez – Núñez, Sissoko, Luisinho – Borja Bastón.
Referee: José Ramón Piñeiro Crespo
Kick-off: 18h15 CET (Alfredo Di Stéfano stadium)
Head-to-head Vs. Castilla: 9 wins for Depor, 7 draws, 9 wins for Castilla (Segunda)
Record in Madrid:> 3 wins for Depor, 4 draws, 5 wins for Castilla (Segunda)
Head-to-head Vs. B teams: 38 wins for Depor, 16 draws, 29 wins for the B teams (Segunda, Segunda B & Tercera)



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