Squad news


26 Apr 2014
Deportivo’s coach was warning that the promotion isn’t achieved yet and that his team cannot relax at the Riazor; Ponferradina’s trainer was assuring that he doesn’t want to join Depor’s party.

Claudio Barragán Escobar is a well-known figure for Deportivo; he played during four years at the Galician club and was one of the strikers during the Super Depor era (between 1991 & 1995). His career at Depor was crowned with the Copa Del Rey in 1995 and ended making 114 appearances at Primera scoring 35 goals.

He was transferred to UD Salamanca in 1995 and also played for Elche CF. Precisely at this club he began his career as a coach. He was the assistant of Galician manager David Vidal and was named as the head coach ahead of matchday 07 during the season 2008/09. He had an acceptable first year clinching the permanence, but was fired one year later.

And the Valencian man found the success as a coach at SD Ponferradina, club where he has spent the last four years –curiously the job was offered to Fernando Vázquez first- He landed at the middle of the season 2010/11 when the team was fighting to survive at Segunda, he didn’t clinch the permanence, but one year later was allowing a quick return to Liga Adelante, Then, for the season 2012/13, he made a phenomenal job ending seventh at the standings and just missing the promotion seats by the tie-breaker with UD Las Palmas. For this season his goal is once again the permanence and this is his second official confrontation against Fernando Vázquez after losing the game of the first round (0-1).

Depor’s coach offered his press conference on Friday’s noon.  He talked with reporters for 16 minutes. He began explaining why he picked 20 players for the match, “At the list only Núñez is out. There are 20 players, because Diego Ifrán is dragging some issues and I like that, at these moment, we can all be together. The true is that it isn’t comfortable for a coach to rule out some men. It’s worse for the players. For me is a joy, but also a responsibility.”

The Galician tactician refused to admit that Depor are close to promotion only for winning and shinning within the last two games, “I believe that the team was always fine. This is a regular team that has been doing things right. We aren’t at the top as a consequence of winning the last two games. We are at the top because we have been winning for a while.”

Once again he was insisting that nothing is done yet and that Depor cannot relax after been so close to clinch the promotion, “The team has an important advantage, but we cannot play with that. I have told it to the players many times: Sometimes to have an advantage means to be conservative.  Because you could end playing in order to keep the advantage. It tends to happen to a golf player when he’s 8 strokes ahead and since that point, if he plays to keep the advantage, then it’s probably that the others will catch him. “

“We have an advantage that brings tranquility, but it can end affecting us. Let’s imagine the worse, what happen if we lose or tie tomorrow? And if later Eibar and Tenerife win, then the difference is smaller. We have to win the games, there are fewer games now, but we need to win them. Nothing is done yet. We aren’t superior to the rest and must keep going. These are pretty moments and we need to enjoy them, having the hope the team is near to the promotion, but we cannot be thinking of when or how it will come. It will arrive.” He added regarding the issue.

The Castrofeito-born coach was explaining the status of Diego Ifrán and Antonio Núñez, “He [Ifrán] remains doubtful. He was fine today and the other day too, though he didn’t end the session due to a muscle problem, therefore we think that maybe he’s ready to play, but probably not for the full 90 minutes. Núñez is out because today, at the cafeteria, he suffered a lumbar process, I don’t know if it was the cold weather or what, and evidently 24 hours aren’t enough to be recovered.”

He was admitting a suggestion of a reporter regarding that Depor are living the best moment on the season, “The winter signing are progressing and getting used to the team, at the same time the collective form is improving. We are playing with five players that weren’t here on December and yes, probably this is the sweetest moment of the season. “

On Friday the club released a study that indicates that Depor are among the Segunda teams that run more during the games; about the subject the coach said that, “For me it’s important, though the team that runs more isn’t necessary the one that wins the game. It means we are among the best regarding the physical condition. It’s important to run, because you do things at defense when you don’t have the ball, and later do things in attack when you have it. It’s positive. It isn’t cowardly to run [he laughed]”

During the week it was also known that the club is having problems to promise the players a bonus in case of clinching the promotion; about the issue El Profesor stated that, “I don’t think there will be a problem. The professionals want to earn more money and they have the right to ask for a bonus. Why not? But the club also has the right to say yes or no. Evidently they earn a reward and there won’t be a conflict. The club told us they will see if it’s possible. Things are like this. All the teams have this, but evidently the situation of the club is difficult.”

On Friday, Sissoko said that he will like to continue at the club on next season, and Vázquez was content with the idea, “Well, I would be delighted. I believe the lad has more things of what he’s offering. At least we have an advantage as the player wants to stay, though it also depends of Wolfsburg. The will of a player is determinant, because any player ends staying where he wants to be.”

About SD Ponferradina, Depor’s manager said that he’s waiting for an offensive team, “It’s a daring team, a team that tries to play in the same way no matter they play at home or away. They won’t come here in order to be locked at the back. That’s the Ponferradina that I expect to meet. I don’t trust anything. Neither I’m afraid. We must go out and score the goals. We will be tense and nervous as it happens in any game. Surely we will suffer.”

Vázquez was also asked if he’s aware if Rabello and Sissoko could be picked for the World Cup, which would reduce their presence at the team for the final matchdays, “I haven’t thought about that. For me it would be a big surprise. It will be a big joy, but will also be a surprise. In case it happens then there’s nothing we can do.”

Once again, the coach didn’t want to give any hint of the lineup. This after been asked if he will repeat the starting eleven and the system, “I don’t say that it won’t happen, but neither that yes.  I can say that’ probable, but neither is impossible to see me making changes. I must think about it and evidently all the possibilities are there. All the players are performing in their normal positions, with the exception of Diego Seoane, but the rest are performing according to their characteristics.”

Ponferradina’s coach addressed the media on Friday’s morning. He was talking of the importance of the meeting, “These are three vital points and we must fight with everything. Depor are probably living their best moment, but we cannot give up to anything.” Still, he was admitting that he lived his best years in A Coruña, “Well, it’s like that. I believe those were the best four years in my career as a professional. I achieved everything there and all the moments were sweet.”

He was feeling sorry for the situation lived by the ex-Depor winger Saúl, who announced his retirement on this week, “It touches you deeply for the things he has went through. The lad gave everything and unfortunately it ended happening this. Sometimes we don’t notice it, but each person counts. I hope that he will be recovered; he won’t be able to play again, but hope he will be able to live his life.”

Barragán is hoping that the environment at the Riazor can motivate his players, “How many people would be at the Riazor? 25,000? 30,000? If that isn’t motivating enough then we will have to go and play somewhere else, a place with less people and pressure. I just hope to give our best and I don’t rule out the option of picking points in this game. I heard that we are the perfect rival to hold the party, but well… there are 90 minutes to play and I don’t want to join Depor’s party.”

Before the press conference, the coach offered a couple of interviews to the LFP website and newspaper La Opinión A Coruña. He was talking of the feelings for visiting the Riazor, “Obviously, Deportivo and the fans will always be in my heart. I was already there as a player and as the coach of Elche and they were cheering my name, so it’s significant. I should have done something right when I was there. The fans are very loyal and the player that gives everything for the team always has the recognition and that's what happened to me.”

The ex-Depor attacker also confessed that he lived a hard time with the relegation of the Galician club, “It was bad, especially thinking of Depor’s fans. Their reaction when the team went down was fundamental. Deportivo is where it is right now in a major part thanks to the fans.”

Once again he was admitting the problems when SD Ponferradina play on the road, “Without doubt we are having a hard time playing away from home, and the numbers say everything. We haven’t added the points that we deserve, but well… we know that on Saturday we are facing a rival living its best moment and it’s going to be a complicate match.”

He was also anticipating that he expects to meet the 4-1-4-1 figure of the past two games, “They have been playing like this for the past two games and things went pretty good for them, it’s difficult to see a coach changing. Now they have more mobility and maybe their possessions are longer. They have improved a lot. If we aren’t an uncomfortable and daring team, then we will have few chances.”

Finally, Claudio was assuring that the three points are more important for Ponferradina, “The fans of Depor have good memory, but right now I’m defending other colours, I’m a professional and my wish is to add the three points, because we need it more than them, they surely will get promoted. It’s a solid team and things should be really nasty to not see them clinching the goal.”



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